Jessa Duggar Had An Abortion.

In September of last year, woman named Nancy Davis found out that the fetus she was carrying did not have a skull and would die a painful death shortly after being born. But because she lived in Louisiana, and acrania was not included in their list of acceptable reasons to have an abortion, if she stayed there, she would have been legally forced to carry the baby to term. So she went to New York.

Back before Roe v. Wade was decided, actress Debbie Reynolds almost died due to being forced to carry a dead fetus for about six weeks before doctors agreed to remove it.

In 2021, a Texas woman was forced to carry a dead fetus for several weeks because she was already 10 weeks along and doctors didn't want to get sued for $10,000.

At least two women in Poland, where abortion is banned, have died in the last few years due to being forced to carry non-viable fetuses.

Over the weekend, reality television's Jessa Duggar, who has compared abortion to the Holocaust, announced on YouTube that back in December of last year, she suffered a miscarriage and had to have a dilation and curettage — popularly known as a D&C.

Via People:

Jessa documented in one scene on camera that she had been concerned early on in the pregnancy because she had been "spotting" blood. She relayed that her family sang the devotional hymn "Day by Day" to cheer her up.

However, upon arriving at her next ultrasound appointment, the doctor broke the terrible news that the baby did not "look good." [...]

Due to risks of complications with passing the fetus at home, she said she decided to check in to a hospital to perform a dilation and curettage procedure to remove the fetus from her womb.

I watched the whole 18 minute video so you don't have to. Duggar said that when she went in to get her ultrasound, the doctor told her that "the gestational sac looks good, the baby does not," which seems like a really messed up way of telling someone that the fetus they are carrying is dead if that was indeed the case. The complications mentioned were that she has a history of hemorrhaging and if she "took something" and tried to pass the fetus at home, something could go wrong and she'd have to go to the hospital. So she and her husband decided that they would go to the hospital to get a D&C.

A few things.

Were she to have taken "something," that "something" would very likely have been misoprostol and mifepristone, otherwise known as "the abortion pill." Right now, we are on the verge of a judge declaring mifepristone illegal because other forced birthers filed a lawsuit claiming that it is "unsafe" despite the fact that it is safer than Tylenol.

Also, because of people who share Duggar's sentiments about abortion, people in many states are not able to get the health care she received when in the same situation. Abortion is banned in Arkansas, where she lives, but doctors are allowed to perform them "to treat ectopic pregnancies, remove an already-dead fetus, 'save the life or preserve the health of the unborn child' or 'save the life of the mother.'"

A woman in Texas, in Duggar's exact situation, had to wait two weeks and get multiple ultrasounds in order to be allowed to get a D&C. During this time, she could have died from sepsis, because that is what happens when you walk around with a dead baby inside of you.

Another woman in Duggar's exact situation, in Idaho, had to live through a 19-day miscarriage. She found out that the fetus had no heartbeat, that it was dead, and when she asked for a D&C to get it out of her, she was told no. She went to the ER three times and the most they did for her was offer her some tranexamic acid, which is used to treat heavy periods.

A woman in New Orleans whose water broke at 16 weeks was forced to go through actual labor instead of a dilation and extraction.

Because of the way many of these laws are worded, doctors in states with abortion bans don't want to run the risk going to prison or being fined thousands of dollars or losing their medical licenses to perform the kind of operation Jessa Duggar had, for the reason she had it.

This seems like an especially good time to revisit Joyce Arthur's The Only Moral Abortion Is My Abortion.

Now, I am sad for anyone who loses a wanted pregnancy, because that's obviously a traumatic thing. I'm glad Jessa Duggar was able to have an abortion. I absolutely am. I would never want to force anyone to walk around with a dead fetus inside of them or support laws that would result in that happening. Jessa Duggar does. Her family does. Perhaps this incident will make her or even them slightly more compassionate and understanding of the many reasons why reproductive rights are so very important.

But I doubt it.

Do your Amazon shopping through this link, because reasons.

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Robyn Pennacchia

Robyn Pennacchia is a brilliant, fabulously talented and visually stunning angel of a human being, who shrugged off what she is pretty sure would have been a Tony Award-winning career in musical theater in order to write about stuff on the internet. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynElyse


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