According to today’s digital version of The Telegraph newspaper in Great Britain, British doctors and gynecologists are being urged to by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists to warn pregnant women of the potential complications and risks of pregnancy, and frankly discussing the relative safety of abortion.
This is an interesting development in women’s health policy, as the media has nearly always emphasized the potential psychological influence an abortion may have on a woman, though many women report that they experience little or no psychological repercussions from the procedure. Predictably, religious and political conservatives are in an uproar (check the comments section for an example), but it will be interesting to see if the United States follows Great Britain’s lead.
Here’s an interesting piece from NPR host Michel Martin. Using the example of a letter of complaint recently received from a listener, she briefly addresses a problem many women still struggle with on a daily basis: The idea that what men say, think, do or find interesting in is inherently interesting to everyone, while what women say, think, do or find interesting is inherently not of interest to a larger public audience (i.e. one that includes men.)
These sort of issues, though “less important” than many of the more dire and pressing issues Martin mentions, are really of great interest to me. As a fairly privileged, white, American woman who came of age in the 1990s I have been lucky to escape relatively unscathed by many of the uglier faces of misogyny. Nonetheless I’ve definitely struggled with the persistence of the many ways my culture, and even the most progressive of my close friends and family, often fall into the trap of thinking that what women say or do is less interesting, or less mainstream that what men say or do. And I’m not even into fashion.
Is this something that is getting better? How do you address it in your experiences?