Mariatalks.com - Abortion Ment.

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Mariatalks.com - Abortion Ment.

Does this state funded website go too far in making an abortion sound like no big deal?

A state-funded sex education Web site that tells teens an abortion is “much easier than it sounds” has drawn fire from outraged pro-lifers who say mariatalks.com is glossing over ugly truths, steering teens toward the controversial procedure and counseling them how to keep mom and dad in the dark.

“The commonwealth is using taxpayer money to tell kids how to get a secret abortion, and that’s wrong,” said Linda Thayer, a former Boston schoolteacher who is vice president for educational affairs of Massachusetts Citizens for Life, which this week took aim at the site.

“This is a misuse of state funds, especially for parents who are taxpayers,” said Thayer, who also blasted the Web site for “deception by omission” for describing abortion simply as “when the contents of the womb (uterus) are removed.”

Mariatalks.com, featuring fictional hip teen “Maria,” who addresses teens in a breezy tone, has been produced since 2008 by the AIDS Action Committee with $100,000 annual grants from the state Department of Public Health. The money also covers a sex-crisis hotline and other outreach efforts.

AIDS Action Committee chief Rebecca Haag, in a statement defending the Web site, said, “We feel strongly that the issues that are addressed through the Maria Talks Web site are essential in safeguarding the general, sexual health of youth by informing them of their risk for unintended pregnancies, HIV and other sexually transmitted infections.”

Maria tells teen readers abortion is a “hot topic” but that the procedure is “more common than you might think” and “safe and effective, though some people may experience temporary discomfort.” The site’s discussion of risk is limited to advising that it is better to get an abortion sooner rather than later.

Planned Parenthood declined to comment on the language used by mariatalks.com. However, the abortion provider’s own Internet abortion advice includes a lengthy list of potential health risks — such as “infection,” “blood-clotting,” “injury to the cervix or other organs,” and “an incomplete abortion.”

In another segment, Maria says to Massachusetts teens, “The reality of getting an abortion is much easier than it sounds here.” In contrast, a more cautionary Maria counsels on another page that adoption “can be pretty tough for some people, especially emotionally.”

Of conflicted feelings over abortion, Maria counsels that one of her fictional friends found it a “difficult decision” but decided the procedure was the “best choice . . . for herself, her boyfriend, her family and her future.”

Of bypassing parental approval, Maria says, “It may be really hard for you to imagine talking to either your parents or a judge about getting an abortion, but there are people who can help you through it.”

By comparison, Planned Parenthood explicitly states, “Teens are encouraged to involve parents in their decision.”

Under state law, children under 18 seeking an abortion must have permission from a parent or a guardian. Maria notes that state law allows minors to skirt that approval through a confidential judicial hearing, saying, “I know it sounds crazy . . . this really can be done and young women do this all the time here in Massachusetts.”

The site then directs teens to Planned Parenthood, saying that agency will either help them talk to parents or provide a lawyer to guide them through the judicial process.

NARAL Pro-Choice America Executive Director Andrea Miller called Maria Talks “terrific.”

“It’s really a complete and medically accurate set of information,” Miller said. “I’m impressed that the state has provided this information in a youth-friendly, nonjudgmental manner.”

State health officials had no immediate comment on the controversy over the site yesterday.

Meanwhile, Charles Skidmore, principal of Arlington High School, where a Maria Talks poster hangs in the nurse’s office, said, “I’m assuming because it’s from the Department of Public Health, it’s balanced information. There’s so much information available now, at least this has someone standing behind it that is a state-sponsored organization.”

http://bostonherald.com/news/regional/view/2011_0420site_no_stigma_in_abortion_critics_blast_state-funded_sex-ed_web_site/srvc=home&position=0

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Did you look at the website, Gloria? I don't think the tone of that article is right at all. The abortion information is accurate and well explained, just like the adoption and parenting information. Also, the abortion page is a TINY part of this site, which is filled with sexual assault information. This website looks great to me.

ETA: As an aside, the person who said this site teaches you how to get a secret abortion is an idiot. This website does no such thing anywhere I could find, unless you consider informing people of the law teaching them how to get secret abortions.

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"CalBearInBoston" wrote:

Did you look at the website, Gloria? I don't think the tone of that article is right at all. The abortion information is accurate and well explained, just like the adoption and parenting information. Also, the abortion page is a TINY part of this site, which is filled with sexual assault information. This website looks great to me.

ETA: As an aside, the person who said this site teaches you how to get a secret abortion is an idiot. This website does no such thing anywhere I could find, unless you consider informing people of the law teaching them how to get secret abortions.

Yes actually, I did. Everything the article said I saw represented in that way on the site. It absolutely makes abortion and not getting parental consent sound like it is some trivial thing. What part did they misrepresent?

Can I get an abortion in Massachusetts if I’m under 18?
Ok, I totally know that this information can sound pretty intimidating and overwhelming, but I promise you the reality of getting an abortion is much easier than it sounds here. It may be really hard for you to imagine talking to either your parents or a judge about getting an abortion, but there are people who can help you through it.

If a woman is under age 18, has never been married and decides she wants to have an abortion, Massachusetts law requires both her consent, and either (1) the consent of one parent or legal guardian, or (2) authorization by a judge.

Again, I know it sounds crazy, but just keep reading . . . this really can be done and young women do this all the time here in Massachusetts.

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"GloriaInTX" wrote:

Yes actually, I did. Everything I the article said I saw represented in that way on the site. It absolutely makes abortion and not getting parental consent sound like it is some trivial thing. What part did they misrepresent?

Well, I think this website represents the reality of abortion quite fairly. I think the author of the article is totally off base talking about secret abortions or glossing over truth. It talks about abortion factually, just like it does parenting and adoption. It doesn't dismiss adoption and the article happened to leave this part out:

From what I’ve heard, going through this process can be pretty tough for some people, especially emotionally. Agencies will provide resources and support for people who are having a rough time and will help them get through it. There is also support for anyone close to you who may also be affected by the decision.

Abortion is common, they give the stats. It is easy to get an abortion in Massachusetts, there are lots of providers. Early abortions do have less risk than later term abortions. Those things are just factually true. Do you object to them offering resources for people to help girls speak to their parents about having an abortion? Do you object to the site telling girls how to receive legal help if they need it? The abortion page also says this:

It is your right to decide what to do without feeling judged, pressured or criticized. This is an important decision that you have to make based on your own situation. What may make sense for someone else may not make sense for you. Call the Sexual Health Helpline at (877) MA-SEX-ED (877) 627-3933 for help. We can provide you with information and support to help you make the decision that’s right for you with absolutely NO PRESSURE either way.

The only "problem" I see with the site is that it provides factual information without stigma. Good for the state of Massachusetts. That is how it should be.

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I'm totally with you on this one, Gloria. They do make it sound like it's not a big deal at all since teens there do it all the time. The way I read it sounds like they make the issue very trivial since it's just the removal of "contents" and really can be a secret if that's what they want. I sure would like the stats they came up with to say that 25% of women have had an abortion by the time they reached 40. Is that for their state only since everyone's doing it all the time?

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"Beertje" wrote:

I'm totally with you on this one, Gloria. They do make it sound like it's not a big deal at all since teens there do it all the time. The way I read it sounds like they make the issue very trivial since it's just the removal of "contents" and really can be a secret if that's what they want. I sure would like the stats they came up with to say that 25% of women have had an abortion by the time they reached 40. Is that for their state only since everyone's doing it all the time?

Do you think they're making this stuff up? This is well documented. Women do get abortions all the time and they tend to be very safe (early abortions are statistically much safer than childbirth).

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So why then do they put this section for adoption, but not abortion? Adoption is tough for some people emotionally but abortion isn't? There is not ONE THING on the abortion page about it being emotional or tramatic, just how it is easy and everybody does it. The only slightly negative thing it says on the whole page is that it is a difficult decision, but for her friend it was the best thing.

From what I’ve heard, going through this process can be pretty tough for some people, especially emotionally. Agencies will provide resources and support for people who are having a rough time and will help them get through it. There is also support for anyone close to you who may also be affected by the decision.

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"GloriaInTX" wrote:

So why then do they put this section for adoption, but not abortion? Adoption is tough for some people emotionally but abortion isn't? There is not ONE THING on the abortion page about it being emotional or tramatic, just how it is easy and everybody does it. The only slightly negative thing it says on the whole page is that it is a difficult decision, but for her friend it was the best thing.

By the time a teen get to this website, how many websites do you think she's been to that say how horrific and painful abortion is? Probably dozens. Is your argument that there isn't enough messaging out there about abortions being emotional or traumatic? Come on.

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"CalBearInBoston" wrote:

By the time a teen get to this website, how many websites do you think she's been to that say how horrific and painful abortion is? Probably dozens. Is your argument that there isn't enough messaging out there about abortions being emotional or traumatic? Come on.

I really don't know, what difference does that make? We are talking about THIS State Sponsored website not a hundred others. So your argument is that since this website is not complete and makes things sound too easy she should go somewhere else for more information?

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"CalBearInBoston" wrote:

Do you think they're making this stuff up? This is well documented. Women do get abortions all the time and they tend to be very safe (early abortions are statistically much safer than childbirth).

Make what up? I question the stats. I have no clue if what they're saying is specific to their state or even a specific hospital or even if it includes spontaneous abortions (miscarriages), but interpretation of statistics may be altered to side with their POV. You know that.

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"GloriaInTX" wrote:

I really don't know, what difference does that make? We are talking about THIS State Sponsored website not a hundred others. So your argument is that since this website is not complete and makes things sound too easy she should go somewhere else for more information?

This website doesn't talk about all the ways that you can die in childbirth and become injured during pregnancy but you don't seem to have a problem with that. Information does not happen in a vacuum. When creating public health information, a basic starting point is figuring out what else is out there. They didn't need to have a 20 page long section about every tiny aspect of abortion because there are already thousands of websites out there that do that for you. Additionally, do you imagine a woman would read this website and then show up to a hospital or a clinic to get an abortion and not receive any more information along the way? That's not possible. I also missed where this website claimed to be the definitive source on abortion. It looks to me like a site that has an overview on a number of sexual health topics and then has links to more thorough information at the end of every section. Should they not have a section on sexual violence since they don't list every applicable penal code?

I don't think this website makes abortion sound too easy. I think it makes it sound exactly the way it actually is. We're just unaccustomed to that so it's apparently shocking.

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"Beertje" wrote:

Make what up? I question the stats. I have no clue if what they're saying is specific to their state or even a specific hospital, but interpretation of statistics may be altered to side with their POV. You know that.

The statistics they present are in line with everything I've read that is nationally representative. The last paper I looked at said 1/3 of women in the US would have an abortion by the time they were 45. It just seems weird that you would dismiss their statistics immediately without even looking at them.

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I agree with every single thing that Kate has said. Or will say. Ha.

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"CalBearInBoston" wrote:

This website doesn't talk about all the ways that you can die in childbirth and become injured during pregnancy but you don't seem to have a problem with that. Information does not happen in a vacuum. When creating public health information, a basic starting point is figuring out what else is out there. They didn't need to have a 20 page long section about every tiny aspect of abortion because there are already thousands of websites out there that do that for you. Additionally, do you imagine a woman would read this website and then show up to a hospital or a clinic to get an abortion and not receive any more information along the way? That's not possible. I also missed where this website claimed to be the definitive source on abortion. It looks to me like a site that has an overview on a number of sexual health topics and then has links to more thorough information at the end of every section. Should they not have a section on sexual violence since they don't list every applicable penal code?

I don't think this website makes abortion sound too easy. I think it makes it sound exactly the way it actually is. We're just unaccustomed to that so it's apparently shocking.

Do you not think the same holds true for those facing adoption? What makes adoption more traumatic than abortion? Why aren't they talking about support for them and families who are affected by this decision for those choosing abortions? I really don't see it the way you're seeing it. It does sound like it's just a simple procedure that everyone is doing, never mind the psychological aspect of that decision. It sounds incredibly cold and callous throughout their interpretation of the abortion process for teens that they even couldn't word the embryo/fetus anything other than "content." Is that their interpretation of establishing a connection with the teen that they surmise the "content" as a simple object that can just disappear if you take these steps. To me, it's completely minimalizing the entire process.

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"CalBearInBoston" wrote:

The statistics they present are in line with everything I've read that is nationally representative. The last paper I looked at said 1/3 of women in the US would have an abortion by the time they were 45. It just seems weird that you would dismiss their statistics immediately without even looking at them.

Dismiss? I don't. I want to know the stats as everywhere I've read, the 25% of all pregnancies terminated early includes spontaneous abortions. What's weird about questioning that?

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"Beertje" wrote:

Dismiss? I don't. I want to know the stats as everywhere I've read, the 25% of all pregnancies terminated includes spontaneous abortions. What's weird about questioning that?

Do you mean miscarriages? You are way, way off. 25% of conceptions are thought to end in miscarriage (theorizing as some women never know they are pregnant by the time they miscarry and assume they are just having a normal period)

. about 30% (or more) of women will get an abortion in their lifetime. Totally different experiences, totally separate stats.

Summary: It is estimated here that, as of 2008, about 28% of U.S. women ages 15-64 have had abortions. This figure has risen from 2.8% in 1973 to 11% in 1980, 19% in 1987, 24% in 1994, and 27% in 2001. In 2008, of women ages 40-55, about 40% have had abortions in their lifetimes.

from here. http://www.johnstonsarchive.net/policy/abortion/uslifetimeab.html

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"Beertje" wrote:

Dismiss? I don't. I want to know the stats as everywhere I've read, the 25% of all pregnancies terminated early includes spontaneous abortions. What's weird about questioning that?

The way you wrote about it was flip, so I assumed you were being dismissive. The 25% stat they're talking about is cumulative over a woman's life, not a snapshop in time. If you want to see statistics Guttmacher is really the only group that does it.

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"Beertje" wrote:

Do you not think the same holds true for those facing adoption? What makes adoption more traumatic than abortion? Why aren't they talking about support for them and families who are affected by this decision for those choosing abortions? I really don't see it the way you're seeing it. It does sound like it's just a simple procedure that everyone is doing, never mind the psychological aspect of that decision. It sounds incredibly cold and callous throughout their interpretation of the abortion process for teens that they even couldn't word the embryo/fetus anything other than "content." Is that their interpretation of establishing a connection with the teen that they surmise the "content" as a simple object that can just disappear if you take these steps. To me, it's completely minimalizing the entire process.

No, I think there is very little out there about how hard adoption is. Google adoption and abortion and see what information you come up with. I guarantee that the vast majority of adoption will be positive and the vast majority of abortion will be negative.

It's cold and callous to talk about abortion as removing the contents of the uterus? That's what it is. In the "biz" it's called the Products of Conception. Do you think this website would better serve women if it talked about the horrors of abortion? The dirty little secret that people never want to talk about is that the vast majority of women who have safe, legal, uncoerced abortions are glad they did so. They aren't traumatized and their lives go on. This website doesn't even say that! It just lays out the facts of abortion. When did it become wrong to give teenagers accurate information instead of judgment?

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"Potter75" wrote:

I agree with every single thing that Kate has said. Or will say. Ha.

But I'm counting on you so that I'm not alone! Smile

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"CalBearInBoston" wrote:

The dirty little secret that people never want to talk about is that the vast majority of women who have safe, legal, uncoerced abortions are glad they did so. They aren't traumatized and their lives go on. This website doesn't even say that! It just lays out the facts of abortion. When did it become wrong to give teenagers accurate information instead of judgment?

Ditto this. I recall when I was pregnant with Weston, sitting in the waiting room at my OB's office, and there were two pregnant teenagers discussing their pregnancies. One of them said she'd wanted to have an abortion but her mom told her it would be painful. :rolleyes: Yeah, like labor is going to be a walk in the park, and post-partum afterpains are a joy. Oh and let's not mention that recovering from a c-section or episiotomy can be a wee bit painful, too.

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I'm not a fan of how easy they stress it is to get a "secret abortion". I think they should emphasize the importance of talking to a parent (or at least another trusted adult) before getting an abortion. Morals aside, it is a huge decision and parental support would probably really help in the long run.

BUT, I think it is a really good website. It has lots of solid information and is very factual and non-judgmental. It seems like a resource teens would use and a safe place to ask questions.

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I'm skeptical of the 25% stat. I see womens medical histories all the time and that isn't reflected.

I suspect they took the # of abortions, divided by # of women and came up with that stat, as opposed to just the # of women who have had an abortion (regardless of the number of abortions).

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"kris_w" wrote:

I'm not a fan of how easy they stress it is to get a "secret abortion". I think they should emphasize the importance of talking to a parent (or at least another trusted adult) before getting an abortion. Morals aside, it is a huge decision and parental support would probably really help in the long run.

Not all of us has a parent who would be supportive, accepting, or helpful. Sad There are lots of girls who tell their parents everything, but those of us who can't or won't should never be forced to confront or get permission from their parents. If they were good parents, we'd probably have already told them, kwim? That's why the judge option needs to be available wherever parental consent is mandated.

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"Spacers" wrote:

Not all of us has a parent who would be supportive, accepting, or helpful. Sad There are lots of girls who tell their parents everything, but those of us who can't or won't should never be forced to confront or get permission from their parents. If they were good parents, we'd probably have already told them, kwim? That's why the judge option needs to be available wherever parental consent is mandated.

No, I get that. Honor killings for much less are in the news around here too often.

I just think if it were my own daughter... The website seems to jump to doing it secretly too quick, imo. I don't like abortions, but I love my daughter. And I would want her to come to me about any hard thing. I think a teen might too so scared about being pregnant at all to really know how a parent would react.

I really do think the website is good, but I wish on this point they would emphasize talking to an adult (ideally a parent) rather than just try to deal with it alone.

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"kris_w" wrote:

I'm skeptical of the 25% stat. I see womens medical histories all the time and that isn't reflected.

I suspect they took the # of abortions, divided by # of women and came up with that stat, as opposed to just the # of women who have had an abortion (regardless of the number of abortions).

No, it's modeled and takes into account multiple abortions per woman.

ETA: I'm pretty sure it's been done using CDC surveillance data and reports of whether or not each abortion was that woman's first, 2nd, or 3rd+. It's not hard to extrapolate based on that. If anything, abortions are underreported, not over, so I would expect the 25% number to be low. I'm not sure where you're seeing women's medical histories, but lots of women don't report a previous abortion on their medical history unless they think it's relevant.

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"kris_w" wrote:

No, I get that. Honor killings for much less are in the news around here too often.

I just think if it were my own daughter... The website seems to jump to doing it secretly too quick, imo. I don't like abortions, but I love my daughter. And I would want her to come to me about any hard thing. I think a teen might too so scared about being pregnant at all to really know how a parent would react.

I really do think the website is good, but I wish on this point they would emphasize talking to an adult (ideally a parent) rather than just try to deal with it alone.

I don't think it does talk about just dealing with it alone. I actually don't get the secret abortion argument at all. It has lots of information about who you can talk to and other parts of the site suggest talking with your parents as well. Lots of parents aren't willing or able to have this conversation with their kids, though. Those are the kids who need help from a website the most.

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"CalBearInBoston" wrote:

No, it's modeled and takes into account multiple abortions per woman.

ETA: I'm pretty sure it's been done using CDC surveillance data and reports of whether or not each abortion was that woman's first, 2nd, or 3rd+. It's not hard to extrapolate based on that. If anything, abortions are underreported, not over, so I would expect the 25% number to be low. I'm not sure where you're seeing women's medical histories, but lots of women don't report a previous abortion on their medical history unless they think it's relevant.

Pretty relevant in obstetrics.

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"kris_w" wrote:

Pretty relevant in obstetrics.

I didn't know you worked in obstetrics. I can still imagine lots of women not putting them on their medical histories. If you're a 35 year old mother of two and worried about being judged, it's entirely possible you wouldn't put an uneventful abortion down from when when you were 15.

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"CalBearInBoston" wrote:

I didn't know you worked in obstetrics. I can still imagine lots of women not putting them on their medical histories. If you're a 35 year old mother of two and worried about being judged, it's entirely possible you wouldn't put an uneventful abortion down from when when you were 15.

No worries Smile I'm a mat nurse.

I can see people not telling, but I *hope* they would tell their OB/GP/mw and that is where we get our prenatal histories from.

I was looking up Canadian stats and they are a little lower than in the US. 20% from what I could see. I'm sure it is very regional though and our hospital serves a region with high teen pregnancy rates, but an ethnic population that is quite anti-abortion. Maybe in a larger city it would look different. I would say maybe 10% based on what I see in practice.

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"CalBearInBoston" wrote:

But I'm counting on you so that I'm not alone! Smile

You're not alone, Kate. Smile

I think that site is spot on and geared perfectly for the audience whom they created the site for and who will probably visit the site the most. Abortion is still a chioce (thank G-d) and is still legal so why shoudl they talk about it like it's something evil and wrong? They do say how it's a hard decisions, just liek they did on the adoption page. But it seems the purpose of the website is to give factual information, without bias, in a way for teens who are confused or just looking for information in a non-judgmental way. I for one think they did that perfectly.

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Do people really have abortions?

Yes, it’s more common than you might think. About four out of every 10 women in the United States have had at least one abortion by the time they turn 40 years old.

According to what I found, the four in 10 DOES include spontaneous abortions:

• Nearly half of pregnancies among American women are unintended, and four in 10 of these are terminated by abortion.[1] Twenty-two percent of all pregnancies (excluding miscarriages) end in abortion.[2]

http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/fb_induced_abortion.html

This doesn't even include intended pregnancies that ended in a miscarriage.

Again, I know it sounds crazy, but just keep reading . . . this really can be done and young women do this all the time here in Massachusetts.

Young women have abortions all the time and that it's more common than they think? That's not true. That skews the perception to a teenager, who is already very vulnerable and can be very naive and accepting of what others tell them without question. To say that young women do this all the time in MA makes it sound like it is something that society completely finds to be acceptable, yet they say also be completely acceptable to keep this a secret from their parents?

If society as a whole finds it to be completely acceptable, why are there continual bills being presented, rallies for or against this issue across the nation? Why are there limited resources to obtain an abortion in many states? I get the fact that not all kids have adequate parents, but they certainly don't include those that have great parents who they may just be too embarrassed to share the information with. They certainly aren't differentiating between them. And where in the link that discusses abortion does it discuss where to get supportive services for mental health like they do for adoptions? This is not simply presenting facts, I find parts of it misleading.

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You're not alone Kate. I thought the website was great. I think that people who oppose to the website are actually opposed to teenagers having access to information in a non-judgemental format.

The truth is - young women can legally get "secret" abortions. Hopefully, if a young woman has the kind of relationship with her parents that she feels safe in talking to them about this. But if she doesn't have that kind of relationship, she still needs to know that she has options. Not making that simple truth clear to teens is not doing them any favors.

The truth is - most abortions are safe and relatively painless, particularly as compared to childbirth.

The truth is - it's a difficult and scary enough decision (either to abort, keep, or adopt) without websites that are supposed to be informative putting their own bias and spin on things. I like it that there is a website out there that just says "Here are your options, it is tough decision, and there are resources out there to help you no matter what you decide." I think that's a GREAT message.

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"Beertje" wrote:

According to what I found, the four in 10 DOES include spontaneous abortions:
http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/fb_induced_abortion.html

This doesn't even include intended pregnancies that ended in a miscarriage.

The denominator there is pregnancies. The denominator that we've been talking about is women. It's assessing different things, which is why I explained its done using surveillance data and reports on what number abortion this was for each woman to make sure women aren't counted more than once.

"Beertje" wrote:

Young women have abortions all the time and that it's more common than they think? That's not true. That skews the perception to a teenager, who is already very vulnerable and can be very naive and accepting of what others tell them without question. To say that young women do this all the time in MA makes it sound like it is something that society completely finds to be acceptable, yet they say also be completely acceptable to keep this a secret from their parents?

Women do have abortions all the time. What do you have to back up that it's not true that abortions are common and more common than people think because they are rarely talked about. It's like when people say miscarriages are more common than people think because women don't talk about it. Doesn't the site say something like this is a hot topic? I'm also not seeing where it says it's completely acceptable to keep this a secret from your parents. It says if you're having trouble talking to your parents, here are resources and legal help if that's the route you need to go. Not every kid CAN talk to their parents about an abortion. Don't you think those are the kids that need information from a website the most?

"Beertje" wrote:

If society as a whole finds it to be completely acceptable, why are there continual bills being presented, rallies for or against this issue across the nation? Why are there limited resources to obtain an abortion in many states? I get the fact that not all kids have adequate parents, but they certainly don't include those that have great parents who they may just be too embarrassed to share the information with. They certainly aren't differentiating between them. And where in the link that discusses abortion does it discuss where to get supportive services for mental health like they do for adoptions? This is not simply presenting facts, I find parts of it misleading.

Where on this site did it say abortion is completely acceptable in society? How is that relevant to presenting the facts about what abortion is? Because some people think abortion is wrong, we should be withholding or dramatizing facts about abortion? Abortions are statistically safe, legal, and when not coerced women report high satisfaction with their decisions. There is PLENTY of information out there that talks about the horrors (largely made up) of abortion. What's wrong about having one website that explains abortion in plain, understandable, nondramatic language? What's wrong with telling teenagers the truth?

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"kris_w" wrote:

No, I get that. Honor killings for much less are in the news around here too often.

I just think if it were my own daughter... The website seems to jump to doing it secretly too quick, imo. I don't like abortions, but I love my daughter. And I would want her to come to me about any hard thing. I think a teen might too so scared about being pregnant at all to really know how a parent would react.

I really do think the website is good, but I wish on this point they would emphasize talking to an adult (ideally a parent) rather than just try to deal with it alone.

While I agree with the idea, it's not the website's place to encourage talking to an adult. As a parent, you should raise your child to come to you with all her problems. Now, think about who actually visits a website like that.. it's usually teenagers who feel like they have no where to go and no one who can listen or understand. It would be a huge turn off to the kids if the website focused more about "talking to an adult". Most kids who have good, understanding parents, already know that they should talk to their parents.

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"CalBearInBoston" wrote:

The denominator there is pregnancies. The denominator that we've been talking about is women. It's assessing different things, which is why I explained its done using surveillance data and reports on what number abortion this was for each woman to make sure women aren't counted more than once.

Women do have abortions all the time. What do you have to back up that it's not true that abortions are common and more common than people think because they are rarely talked about. It's like when people say miscarriages are more common than people think because women don't talk about it. Doesn't the site say something like this is a hot topic? I'm also not seeing where it says it's completely acceptable to keep this a secret from your parents. It says if you're having trouble talking to your parents, here are resources and legal help if that's the route you need to go. Not every kid CAN talk to their parents about an abortion. Don't you think those are the kids that need information from a website the most?

Where on this site did it say abortion is completely acceptable in society? How is that relevant to presenting the facts about what abortion is? Because some people think abortion is wrong, we should be withholding or dramatizing facts about abortion? Abortions are statistically safe, legal, and when not coerced women report high satisfaction with their decisions. There is PLENTY of information out there that talks about the horrors (largely made up) of abortion. What's wrong about having one website that explains abortion in plain, understandable, nondramatic language? What's wrong with telling teenagers the truth?

How can surveillance cameras accurately depict if it's one an the same woman coming in for subsequent abortions to remove them from the number of women? What about if they go to different clinics? That data would be absolutely skewed in figures. Clinics can't be sharing names for statistical data without the consent from the patient and if they're not even reporting it to their OB's as you've suggested, why on earth would they consent their personal information for statistics as well? I really don't think 40% of the female population (between their teen years and up to age 40 - well actually should be even older since they would've performed at least one prior to the age of 40) have had elective abortions like the website states. 22% is a much less occurrence which I would render as not common and many of the abortions are subsequent abortions. Again, that's not common. If it were as common as depicted, there certainly would be many more clinics opened up to allow quicker services since the limited number of clinics that offer it would be overflowing. The closest one from where I live is over 3 hours away.

And no, the site does not say anything about this subject being a hot topic. It doesn't say that if you have trouble talking to your parents, it says if you can't or don't want to then contact them for a free lawyer and that no one has ever been denied by the judge.

Because it's legal, they should be talking straight facts, but much of what I read is more trying to minimize the entire procedure like it's really not a big deal. While it may not be a big deal to some that make that choice, it becomes a huge deal to others who state had they understood the entire procedure or known how they would've felt after the procedure they never would've elected that choice and face emotional trauma as an after effect. No where does it even discuss this like they do with adoption and teens, more than any other population, would need this resource made know to them especially if they choose not to talk to their parents. This to me, is alarming that the site is dismissive about this information.

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"Beertje" wrote:

How can surveillance cameras accurately depict if it's one an the same woman coming in for subsequent abortions to remove them from the number of women? What about if they go to different clinics? That data would be absolutely skewed in figures. Clinics can't be sharing names for statistical data without the consent from the patient and if they're not even reporting it to their OB's as you've suggested, why on earth would they consent their personal information for statistics as well?

Surveillance data doesn't use surveillance cameras. What in the world are you talking about? This explains how the CDC collects data like this: http://www.cdc.gov/reproductivehealth/data_stats/Abortion.htm

"Beertje" wrote:

I really don't think 40% of the female population (between their teen years and up to age 40 - well actually should be even older since they would've performed at least one prior to the age of 40) have had elective abortions like the website states. 22% is a much less occurrence which I would render as not common and many of the abortions are subsequent abortions. Again, that's not common. If it were as common as depicted, there certainly would be many more clinics opened up to allow quicker services since the limited number of clinics that offer it would be overflowing. The closest one from where I live is over 3 hours away.

There can't be as many abortions as are documented to have been provided each year because you don't have one near your house? I don't know what to tell you. I've explained how they've done the data collection and modeling. If you don't buy the numbers, ok, that's up to you. ETA: There are no country western bars near my house. Should I take that to assume that country music is not as popular in the US as people claim? Proximity of services to your home is an odd way to judge whether or not people are accessing a particular medical service.

"Beertje" wrote:

And no, the site does not say anything about this subject being a hot topic. It doesn't say that if you have trouble talking to your parents, it says if you can't or don't want to then contact them for a free lawyer and that no one has ever been denied by the judge.

It says it's a hot topic right here, first paragraph on the abortion page:

Abortion is a pretty hot topic with some of the kids at my school. Some believe that it is wrong while others believe that it can be a good and responsible choice. While everyone is entitled to their opinion, it can sometimes be hard to get truthful information because some people may try to get you to think the same way they do.

"Beertje" wrote:

Because it's legal, they should be talking straight facts, but much of what I read is more trying to minimize the entire procedure like it's really not a big deal. While it may not be a big deal to some that make that choice, it becomes a huge deal to others who state had they understood the entire procedure or known how they would've felt after the procedure they never would've elected that choice and face emotional trauma as an after effect. No where does it even discuss this like they do with adoption and teens, more than any other population, would need this resource made know to them especially if they choose not to talk to their parents. This to me, is alarming that the site is dismissive about this information.

For most people abortions are straight forward medical procedures and people tend to be happy with the consequences. The data bear that out. I hear that you don't want people to feel that way, but that's how the majority of people do feel about it. The website doesn't go into great detail about how pregnancy can ruin your body and labor is painful and you could become incontinent or kill your child as a result of postpartum depression, either. This website gives an overview of all these topics. A woman cannot get an abortion in the second after reading this website, she will be given more information. I don't know if you've ever heard pre or post-abortion counseling, but women tend to be told a LOT of information with a lot more warnings than I ever heard at a prenatal appointment. I find the argument that messaging out there is skewed towards abortion being awesome and adoption and parenting being terrible. Are we just accessing different types of media?

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"Potter75" wrote:

I agree with every single thing that Kate has said. Or will say. Ha.

Me too, and I love my little state. God bless you, Massachusetts, bastion of sanity.