This year marks the 40th anniversary of the legalization of abortion in the United States, thanks to Roe v. Wade. In honor of this landmark decision, two abortion clinic workers took to Reddit with an IAmA ("I am a") AMA ("ask me anything"), inviting people to ask them any questions they had about their experiences. The women describe their background as working at "two different Midwestern, independent (non-Planned Parenthood) feminist clinics, both in strongly antichoice states." They gave some insightful answers about what it's like working in a clinic and what abortion is like in modern America. See some of their most intriguing responses below:
Why do most people you encounter decide to get abortions?
A lot of reasons, really — I don't think there's a typical story. Many of them are already mothers, struggling to care for their existing children. Others are very young and not at all ready to begin a family. Some have been raped; some are in abusive relationships. Really, it's all sorts of things.
What's the most common misconception about abortions?
That clinics are dirty and that we hate babies. Neither is true.
Is there any situation in which you would counsel a woman to not get an abortion?
Sure. If she doesn't want to have an abortion, if someone is pressuring her and she really wants to continue the pregnancy, anything like that. My job really is just to be someone to listen to her and support her decisions.
What do [antiabortion protesters] yell?