It’s time to talk about Planned Parenthood. The other day, the House of Representatives voted to block Planned Parenthood from receiving any federal money. It’s a mind-boggling political move because current law already prevents Planned Parenthood from using any federal money to pay for abortions. So withholding federal money means withholding money to pay for everything else: STD testing, cancer screenings, birth control, etc.
It’s apparent to me that this is happening because Planned Parenthood has become a dirty word, synonymous with abortions. I feel like personal stories can change this. So I feel like people who know that it is not need to speak up and show people that they rely on Planned Parenthood for basic health care. This isn’t fair. It’s horribly unfair that people feel forced to reveal the intimate bodily details to preserve their access to health care. But personal stories change minds. Cecily’s personal story changed my mind about the D&X abortion procedure. She also shared her thoughts about this new bill, as did Simone. Their stories affected me and showed me that mine also might make a difference.
I’m not going to share the details of my story here. I haven’t yet decided how personal or public this blog will be yet and, as any story that ends with a trip to a free clinic, the details are personal. But the ending is what matters, and I can share that: Good Mormon girls need Planned Parenthood, too. They need it when they don’t have money, insurance, information, time, or somebody to talk to. Or any combination of those things. I needed it. My trip to Planned Parenthood had nothing to do with pregnancy or birth control, but it had everything to do with my health and, relatedly, my psychological well-being. Ask somebody why a twenty-year-old girl would need to go to Planned Parenthood and they will think of one thing. Ask again, and this time ask any woman who’s ever been concerned about her reproductive health and she can imagine the myriad reasons a twenty-year-old girl would need to go to Planned Parenthood. If you are a woman who’s ever been to the doctor or worried about her health, you should let your representatives in the House and Senate know what you think about those vote. The day will come when the Senate will not be controlled by the Democrats and legislation like this will pass, unless people get informed now.
Also, because nobody likes a soapbox unless they are also on the soapbox, I’ll share an amusing anecdote: When I posted the above link on my facebook, I wrote “Do You Stand With Plant Parenthood?” Um, what? I’m grateful that my friends, who are good liberals, “liked” the post without commenting on my display of extreme fuzzyheadedness and also that my brother, who is a good conservative, restricted his commentary to mocking my grammar [can you even call that a grammar mistake? it seems like something much worse] and not my politics.