|Action||Regulations for Licensure of Abortion Facilities|
|Comment Period||Ends 3/29/2013|
I am writing to voice my concern over the Virginia legisalture's current actions toward restricting healthcare for women in the state of Virginia by enacting laws that are unduly punitive and restrictive toward family planning providers and abortion providers. These policies will only serve to endanger women by prolonging dangerous and unwanted pregnancy. Women who have been empregnated through rape, incest or other coersion will be forced to undergo further victimization. Women will be forced into illegal srevices to abort their fetuses and endanger their lives further in the process. Legitimate and compassionate physicians and healthcare professionals are being made to feel like pariahs and immoral outlaws.
On a personal note, I had an abortion when I was 19 years old. I was not married nor did I have a steady job. My family did not have the finances to help me and I was not interested in being a mother at this time. And yes, I used protection. The condom broke. Because I lived in a community where I could obtain a safe legal abortion without judgement from people who knew nothing about me, I felt comfortable heading right to the clinic the first minute I thought I might be pregnant. I had my abortion early in the first trimester. It was not a difficult procedure. I did not require any aftercare and I was able to go back to a normal life the very next day.
Based on my experience, I believe that women having safe compassionate access to abortion prevents later term abortion and also helps allieviate any potential long-term stigma a very small number of women report years later. Shaming women will not prevent abortion, it will only make us more determined to help everyone obtain the right to full healthcare access and the private decision that should only be of concern to a woman and her physician. I strongly encourage you to stay out of my doctor's office when I am in there.