MotherTalkers

Where real moms tell it like it is.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

I Voted Today

Today I went to my polling place to vote on a handful of ballot measures. One, Prop 73, would require that doctors notify parents 48 hours in advance of performing an abortion on a minor.

I voted no. Why? Because even though I am a mother now, I’m committed to remembering my teenaged self. I was one of those gals who would have never told my parents about an accidental pregnancy.

I can’t let my desires as a parent obscure my best reference point for reality.

A snapshot of myself at 17: My relationship with my strict, religious parents had deteriorated to the point where I had decided to leave home. I’d gone to live with a couple of girlfriends. Thankfully, the town had a free health clinic where we could get check-ups, birth control pills, and all the condoms one could possibly need, so unwanted pregnancies were rare in my crowd.

There are good reasons why some girls don’t want to talk to their parents. I’d bet money that many of the religious folks advocating for this bill are the same people whose children don’t confide in them.

For daughters who fear parental abuse or retribution, the bill offers an out: these girls can apply for a judicial waiver. Oy! Just what they need! Another authority figure to pass judgment on their predicament.

What do these girls need most? I wish someone would ask them.

-Amy

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