Abortion has been a sensitive but important topic when it comes to women's reproductive rights across the world. Presently, several countries, including the United States, are contemplating taking away a woman's right to have autonomy over her own body. And while abortion is still very much legal in India, it is considered a major taboo, especially if the woman is married. Several people including doctors often tend to shame a woman for 'murdering an unborn child'. This leads to a lot of unnecessary stress on the woman, who is most likely already grappling with making a difficult decision.
Most women are conditioned by society to feel guilty after an abortion. However, a new study revealed that guilt was not the most predominant emotion felt by women right after having an abortion. According to the study conducted by epidemiologist Corinne Rocca, 86% felt either positive emotions or no emotions at all five years after having an abortion.
The researchers had surveyed 667 women across 21 states in the US multiple times over a five-year period, tracking each woman’s emotions around their decision to get an abortion. While conducting the study, researchers asked the participants if they had any emotions of sadness, guilt, relief, regret, anger or happiness over their decision. They found that relief was the most common one throughout the five year period.
In fact, 95% of women believed that they made the right decision by going through the abortion. "For years … there has been a belief promulgated or a claim made that we really need to protect women from the emotional harm that many of them will suffer from when having an abortion," said Rocca, who is a professor at the University of California, San Francisco. "There was no evidence ever to say that was actually true," she added. Rocca wanted to debunk the claim that going through an abortion is a taxing decision, as used by anti-abortion advocates to justify restricting access to abortion.
Well, we hope that the findings of this study pave the way for better reproductive rights for women all over the world!
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