SPOTLIGHT: Belle de Jong Walks Us Through Her Experience Of Having An Abortion
Belle was 21 & still studying at University when she found out she was pregnant. At the time, she was visiting the Netherlands & her week-long visit was then extended further.
After the initial shock, she told the man involved, her parents, & her best friends. Even though she wasn’t ready to have a child, they discussed the possibility of her keeping it.
It’s free to have an abortion in the Netherlands. Once she was sure she wanted to do it, she called the abortion clinic. They calmly walked her through the process, and also brought up the 5-day waiting period.
Sometimes It's Necessary
Belle was on psychiatric medication at the time she got pregnant. If she remained on them, she risked harming the baby. On the other hand if she stopped them, she would then be putting herself at risk.
After the 5-day period & her deliberations, she walked into the abortion clinic, which to her surprise was filled with both Dutch women & foreigners.
The procedure lasted 10 minutes, where she was then offered the possibility to stay as long as needed. She then experienced some bleeding for 1 week along with some cramps.
The Taboo Of Abortion
Give women the choice or to let it be decided by the state? Regardless of your opinion, as Belle says, it’s “important to get at least a debate going on the topic.”
Taboo topics deserve a platform for discussion — because only then can we start to debate what’s important about them and then proceed to break the taboo & stigma surrounding these issues.
The individuals involved in these situations deserve an equal platform to share their story; as you the audience deserve a platform to comment and share your opinions.
Healthy discussions, debates & varied opinions are central to our philosophy and they should be central for everybody’s. This allows us to tell our community’s stories; people from varied backgrounds who all have led different lives.
To Be Or Not To Be Pro-Choice
It’s all about having agency over your own choices, as Belle puts it. She says that although you may be pro-life & choose to not have an abortion yourself, that doesn’t mean you should deny the choice for somebody else. Accessibility to proper healthcare should be a priority over everything else.
“These are just things that should be regular in 2021, they are things that should be accessible to everyone & that’s it.”