Can it be too easy to access a termination?

(147 Posts)
LarryLobster Wed 20-Jul-16 08:05:59

I've always thought that terminations should be available on demand (within time limits) but recent events have caused me to question this and I wonder what others think.

I live in the most equal country around at the moment. Terminations are available on demand, no questions asked. I thought this was a good thing. But a few weeks ago my daughter went to the GP feeling unwell and was blindsided on finding out she was pregnant. She said she didn't want it and within 2 hours had been given the abortion pill. Now I question the ease of it.

My daughter is a bit vulnerable, she is autistic, and this pill was administered on her say so, so quickly that I don't think she even had time to process the fact she was pregnant. She'd tried to get hold of me, her dad and her boyfriend but couldn't. So she'd had nobody to talk to. Don't get me wrong, I absolutely support her decision either way but my concern is about whether she would have made the same decision if she'd had more time to process it.

I remember the initial panic and terror I felt when I found out I was pregnant and that was a planned pregnancy. So what I'm asking is, is it in a woman's best interests to make such a momentous decision so quickly or should a woman's right to terminate be restricted slightly for her own benefit?

Sorry that's so garbled, I'm just trying to make sense of my thoughts.

BertrandRussell Wed 20-Jul-16 08:07:18

WhY country do you live in?

LarryLobster Wed 20-Jul-16 08:08:22

Sweden

2nds Wed 20-Jul-16 08:13:41

Larry lobster

I used to be so Pro life it was unreal, but my own experience of being pregnant with a very sick baby made me question my beliefs over time. 3 years ago I'd have disagreed completely with abortion as a whole, but now I think maybe there should be a certain amount of time for the woman to think things over, depending on the circumstances?

It's a tough one really.

Felascloak Wed 20-Jul-16 08:16:55

Hmmm. I don't think it can be too easy to access a termination but then it does sound like in your daughters case she wasn't really giving informed consent at that stage (which I think is slightly different to ease of access).
Is your daughter ok about it now? Or does she feel it might not be what she really wanted?

BertrandRussell Wed 20-Jul-16 08:17:05

Why would you need the medical profession to tell you that you needed to "think things over"?

PotteringAlong Wed 20-Jul-16 08:19:19

It's not that easy in the uk

MephistoMarley Wed 20-Jul-16 08:20:26

Creating an artificial delay to treatment in case women regret it is paternalistic bullshit but all patients need to give informed consent. It's the doctor's responsibility to assess capacity to consent as they provide care.

Backingvocals Wed 20-Jul-16 08:24:47

I don't think it's that it was "too easy". It's that she was rushed through it. I agree that the medical profession shouldn't be required to wait between hearing the request and granting it to give "time to think". I was very clear what I wanted to happen and I would have found this frustrating and infantilising. But the medical profession should follow the lead of the woman presenting and it sounds like your daughter needed time to process this. Had she really made a decision?

DoinItFine Wed 20-Jul-16 08:25:35

I think taking a pill to induce a very early miscarriage is no big deal.

Why the need to think it over like some massive decision?

It was an unplanned pregnancy that she didn't want. Now it's not happening.

I find the insistence on turning even the mist straightforward termination into some massive drama a bit macabre.

Like when people want to make a massive deal about "chemical" pregnancies.

I don't know. It's all a bit "you can't take a pill that will stop you being pregnant unkess you go home and paint the baby's nursery and pick out a name."

Surely the early stage of the pregnancy, the ease with which it can be ended, and the lsck of emotional connection to it is the point?

LarryLobster Wed 20-Jul-16 08:28:15

She's still very tearful and trying to come to terms with it Felascloak.

Bertrand I'm asking if it's right that women are asked to make life changing decisions in an extremely vulnerable moment and whether safeguards should be in place to protect them.

BertrandRussell Wed 20-Jul-16 08:28:56

WhT about the morning after pill?

Should women be made to go away and have a think about that?

DoinItFine Wed 20-Jul-16 08:30:47

Taking a pill to end a pregnancy you just found out about and didn't want isn't a "life changing decision".

Carrying on with the pregnancy would have been.

museumum Wed 20-Jul-16 08:31:52

I don't think there's such a thing as "too easy" but there may be too quick. If she was calling round for somebody to talk to in the doctors office I would expect the doc to say come back tomorrow when you've spoken to someone. Or here's the prescription, speak to whoever you want to before you have it filled.

DoinItFine Wed 20-Jul-16 08:32:10

I want safeguards in place to protect women from other people getting to decide how long they aee allowed to take making decisions about their own bodies.

PolterGoose Wed 20-Jul-16 08:38:53

Throughout my life, since becoming fertile, I have always known whether I wanted to be pregnant or not. Most years I knew I didn't want to be pregnant so took precautions, meaning that making a decision to end a pregnancy would be a quick easy one if needed. When I wanted to be pregnant, it was a conscious decision. Unless you are planning to get pregnant surely the decision to end the pregnancy can be this easy and doesn't need time to think/reflect/consult.

AveEldon Wed 20-Jul-16 08:46:03

I don't think it can ever be too easy

If you think your daughter's SN makes her unable to give informed consent for medical matters then you may need to do something about that with the GP
And possibly reconsider her contraception

ChocChocPorridge Wed 20-Jul-16 08:46:17

I think the problem with putting any barriers in the way is that those barriers are going to be used against us. Just look at the two doctor issue in the UK and the difficulties a recent poster had getting an abortion.

I've had the morning after pill, and I just had to go to the chemist and ask for it, answer some questions to make sure it was appropriate and wouldn't be dangerous for me, and I can take it. I think, that whilst more unpleasant still in its physical effects (I will avoid needing the MAP in future - it wasn't fun), and thus needing a doctor rather than a pharmicist to proscribe it , a medical abortion is so early that it should be that easy to access.

In your daughters case, I hope she comes to realise that she hadn't intended to be pregnant, she's not pregnant now, and dealing with it quickly is the least traumatic result - that there are more opportunities to be pregnant when she's had a chance to plan.

LassWiTheDelicateAir Wed 20-Jul-16 09:04:27

WhT about the morning after pill?

Should women be made to go away and have a think about that?

Not the same. The woman has thought about it and at that stage isn't pregnant.

whattheseithakasmean Wed 20-Jul-16 09:09:25

If your daughter was using contraception, she didn't want to be pregnant - so why should she suddenly have to think about whether she wants to be pregnant. Quick and easy early terminations sounds like the gold standard to me. I hope you aren't projecting onto your daughter, trying to make her feel bad about something she really does not to feel bad about. It is not a life changing decision, it is a simple medical procedure.

DoinItFine Wed 20-Jul-16 09:15:41

I think the insistence on a massive divide between being pregnant and not bring pregnant is part of a patriarchal view of women.

Is your woman pregnant?

Either she is or she is not.

Are you pregnant?

Well that is not really a yes/no question.

You might think/know you are but have no way to tell for sure.

You might not realise you are and be quite close to giving birth.

You might have just found out and be appalled.

You might be swigging gaviscon out of the bottle and constantly tortured with kicks to your bladder.

You might be feeling great with a small bump and the first quickening.

You might be in a wheelchair at only 20 weeks.

Or in hospital.

Pregnancy is not a binary, it is a process.

It is a thing our bodies do over many months.

There is no real diffetence between taking a pill after sex to make sure you don't have a baby months later.

The fact that pissing on a stick will gove a different number of lines doesn't magically change those experiences.

Unless your focus is not on the woman exoeriencing them.

But on her categorisation as a more valuable type of woman. A pregnant one.

sashh Wed 20-Jul-16 09:40:32

Creating an artificial delay to treatment in case women regret it is paternalistic bullshit

^ This.

I assume she wasn't pinned down and forced to take the pills? Presumably she could have asked for time.

If her SN do not stop her going to the Dr alone then it shouldn't stop her making a medical decision.

Branleuse Wed 20-Jul-16 09:45:32

i think that sounds perfectly fine. She didnt know about or plan the pregnancy, she didnt really want it. Dont make her feel like shes made a bigger decision than she has

ReallyTired Wed 20-Jul-16 09:53:53

I think the OP had a point. I feel that LarryLobster's daughter should have been offered councelling and a chance to think over her options. Such a rapid access to abortion boarders on cohesion. Two days to think over her options, talk to her parents/ social worker/ boy friend would be fine. It would also give time to organise emotional support if she chose to have an abortion.

PolterGoose Wed 20-Jul-16 09:57:08

I think it's a mistake to assume that terminating a pregnancy is an emotional decision, requiring emotional support. If you don't want to be pregnant it's a fairly logical decision.

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