Monday, February 9, 2009

Hey TLC How about abortion stories?

Perhaps when I next travel to the West Coast, I can do a TV series pitch.

Since having my abortion, it has become the experience through which pretty much everything reproductive is refracted

Yesterday, while frolicking in an indoor kiddie play place, I chanced to overhear a conversation between a dad with two kids, and a woman who I initially took to be a grandmother. Somehow the two had struck up a conversation and eventually revealed that both families had been created via IVF. I immediately thought how wonderful that the stigma of infertility had been lessened so much that virtual strangers would discuss their intimate reproductive histories in public.

Tonight, I happened upon yet another TV show focusing on a "mega family." These folks, my age BTW, have 12 kids ranging from 19 to 1. Despite recent media focuses on the "new" big families, such people represent a very small fraction of the population of the United States (depending on how you define large family of course, but 4% of women have five or more children by the age of 44, the cutoff used by demographers when calculating fertility rates).

The truly remarkable demographic shift of our time is the number of women who never bear children (about 20% of women have no children by the age of 44). In an era of increased reproductive technologies, it seems reasonable to conclude that a large number of these women have chosen to remain "childfree" "childless" or whatever label they choose to apply to themselves. Through birth control and yes, abortion, these women have curtailed their fertility.

So TLC, Discovery Health, Lifetime, where are the show about those reproductive choices?


  1. my guess is abortions are too boring for a dramatic TLC special! typically nothing that exciting happens... and as we know there is a lot of hanging around in the waiting room :)

    maybe i am being flip with that comment: all i mean is that the medical aspects are pretty routine, the personal aspects are what stand out, and those are perhaps harder to really do justice on a tv show. it would be fascinating though. can we make one ourselves? i say "we" but i don't want to jump on your brilliant bandwagon here... but if women who've had abortions were willing to make a video -- a tiny film, or something for youtube, or maybe even a tv ad to be sponsored by naral or something -- i would do whatever was asked of me to help out. just an idea, you know, why NOT make stuff like this a reality?

  2. well goodness knows birth itself isn't particularly exciting, yet there are plenty of shows about that!

    I think it is a great idea to make a video. Feel free to run with it. I'm more suited to academic pursuits and think I will end up writing something about the abortion blogs (and the abortion providers blogs, love them too ;)

  3. I think this is a great idea. I think we need to take abortion out of the closet and out into the open. People need to see that women who abort are all around us. They are everyday people and not just some random bad group of women.


If you leave negative comments they will be deleted.