Pregnancy is Fucking Scary

I don’t care to debate the objectionable topic of abortion, but recent events in Texas have shone a light on this particular issue. There is one factor that never gets talked about regarding a woman’s right to choose, which is, for many, the prospect that pregnancy is absolutely terrifying.

I haven’t got a maternal bone in my body, and the idea of motherhood makes my skin crawl for a handful of reasons, but the main reason for my reluctance is that pregnancy itself stirs irrational fear in me. However, when we take a look at statistics and testimonials surrounding childbirth… is it really so irrational?

Do men ever think about that? Have any of you male readers considered the experience of being a living host for a growing parasite that deforms your body, weakens your bones, terrorizes your moods and eventually ejects itself by tearing you apart from the inside out?

I’m shocked that I don’t run into more women who are phobic about pregnancy. I mean, I could barely surrender my bodily autonomy long enough to get my wisdom teeth removed, but that fetus is a rapacious leech in the abdomen for 9 months! It depletes all of the body’s resources. Even in a “healthy” pregnancy, it is common for pregnant women to lose bone density and experience fatigue, infections, hair/tooth loss, and weight gain. Our biological systems betray us to accommodate this hungry, invasive little bean… but the real challenges start once the imposter is ready to leave its snafued vessel to drain you now from the outside for the following 18 years. Pregnancy is a horrifying concept, but it pales in comparison to my fear of giving birth! Even a routine delivery is extremely traumatic to the mother’s body and mind. I won’t get into the risks of a pregnancy gone wrong, but even with the help of modern medicine, pregnancy kills about 800 women every day! And I cannot think of an equivalent where a man is encouraged –nay, expected— to endure such risks to fill a compulsorily imposed role in society.

The arguments most frequently made by pro-choicers have to do with rape, incest, and the possibility of medical complications. These are all valid arguments to keep abortion safe and accessible, but the fact that pregnancy is simply scary just isn’t talked about enough. If the idea of motherhood is daunting to me, a 26 year old woman, then how must a naïve 15 year old feel when she falls pregnant? I cannot fathom how my life would be different if I was unable to get an abortion at age 19, when I was still learning about myself, my body, and what I even wanted from life. Like any high-risk undertaking, pregnancy should only be approached by those who can confidently give informed, enthusiastic consent to the experience. A woman doesn’t need to find herself in tragic circumstances to warrant an abortion.

 I know there are plenty of empathetic husbands and compassionate fathers out there, but there is also a large proportion of males who never consider the female plight of sexual responsibility. If only these men could imagine being host to a hungry parasite that steals their vitality, makes their bellies swell like balloons, and steals their life and mobility away while subjugating them to a series of invasive medical procedures… then they wouldn’t be so quick to condemn every woman to the bondage of motherhood.

For a scientific explanation of why pregnancy is especially hostile and risky for primates, check out this article written by evolutionary biologist Suzanne Sadenin:

September 1, 2021, Austin, Texa, USA: University of Texas women rally at the Texas Capitol to protest Governor Abbott’s signing of the nation’s strictest abortion law that makes it a crime to abort a fetus after six weeks, or when a ”heartbeat” is detected. Abbott signed the law Wednesday, Sept. 1st, 2021. (Credit Image: © Bob Daemmrich/ZUMA Press Wire)