I was one of the lucky ones. I lived in modern times.
It wasn’t easy opting for an abortion on Nov. 22, 1984. That day wasn’t a happy one. It emphasized another reason to dislike that November day, the first being JFK’s assassination in 1963.
Women must speak up about having had an abortion. That’s how I feel.
Still, I occasionally grieve for that fetus I imagined becoming a second magnificent daughter. One I would have named Emma.
It wasn’t an easy decision to have an abortion. To his credit, my ex recognized that it was mine to make. He could have gone either way.
Judaism recognizes that “life is breath.” I don’t follow my hereditary Jewish religion, or any religion, but I sometimes feel proud of “Jewish law.”
Does Jewish law state that life begins at conception? No, life does not begin at conception under Jewish law. Sources in the Talmud note that the fetus is “mere water” before 40 days of gestation. Following this period, the fetus is considered a physical part of the pregnant individual’s body, not yet having life of its own or independent rights. The fetus is not viewed as separate from the parent’s body until birth begins and the first breath of oxygen into the lungs allows the soul to enter the body. (National Council of Jewish Women)
So why are all women in the United States now forced to follow a primarily Catholic or Evangelical decision about their bodies? The U.S. Supreme Court’s biased Dobbs ruling is untenable.