All my life, I have been very proud to be a Texan. I grew up in a suburb of Houston and have never lived farther than a couple hours from the city. I have degrees from Texas A&M #tamu and University of Houston #gocoogs. While I have experienced wanderlust a couple of times in my life, the pull for the adventure has never outweighed the true COMFORT of home with its unique Southern / Tex-Mex culture.
In my last post (6 weeks ago), I discussed the depression I have experienced since Winter Storm Uri which hit Texas the week of February 14th 2021. The inability of our grid (ERCOT) to provide the services of electricity (to meet market demand) led to billions of dollars in personal property damages and contributed to the loss of 111 lives.
Oh and our senator and his wife, their kids (plus friends) and colleagues rode out the storm in Cancun while millions of Texans were trapped inside their 15 degree homes (because that’s totally cool right?).
After a year of watching the US fumble the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, (I thought) this was the final blow to my respect for our institutions. All of which have been allowed to miserably fail the populace while continuing to expect docile subjugation. Since February, it has been a daily mental battle to find the willingness to get out of bed and participate in the institution that is capitalism in the United States.
And then this happened last Friday….
Texas governor signs abortion bill banning procedure as early as six weeks into pregnancy
That’s it – we are living in the dystopian nightmares that we read about in junior high. It is all unfolding exactly like we were taught it would.
I have always been pro-choice – even with my evangelical Republican upbringing. While I was a planned and wanted child, my parents divorced when I was four. I often noticed in my childhood that my presence was a burden to them, that they were grateful to be able to pass me off.
Being a “terribly wanted child” who spent most of my time feeling unwanted – it has just always been obvious to me that women shouldn’t be forced to have children they don’t want.
I chose to do my final presentation in 9th grade speech class on Pro-choice. Let’s just say it was not a popular standpoint among my classmates in my conservative public Texas high school in 2003. Already at that age it was important for me to discuss FACTS when I knew so many of my peers were forming their opinions on their parent’s religious views.
As a psychotherapist who specializes in the treatment of Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) and complex trauma, let me articulate a few of the many psychological impacts of being raised by a person who resents that you exist (possibly even to the extent that they view your life as continued trauma because you are the physical embodiment government theft of bodily autonomy).
First let’s discuss the energetic impact of gestating in a woman who hates you, views you as a parasite. This is pre-birth soul trauma. Before this baby has even taken a breath it has received millions of conscious and subconscious signals from the mother that “it is bad.” The fundamental building block of shame – I am so unworthy that I do not deserve to be part of the collective – is programmed into these babies’ DNA.
In DBT we refer to this as a vulnerability factor – something preexisting that affects your ability to regulate emotions. Ask any adopted child – even though they have been chosen by their new families, they almost universally struggle with feelings of shame rooted in rejection from their biological mother.
Add in the physical implications of forming inside a person who fundamentally does not want you to exist. Do you think these mothers will miss work to attend prenatal appointments (that they have to pay for) or abstain from their substance of choice during forced pregnancy? Go ahead and compound your soul trauma with increased health concerns that are the inevitable result of an unattended to pregnancy.
The law is forcing these babies to be born with two strikes against them before they take their first breath. Yet they will be expected to become healthy, productive members of society (and when they inevitably do not they will be told it is due to their own personal shortcomings not the system that has been stacked completely against them).
I think we can agree that society benefits when adults are well adjusted. This usually means lacking significant trauma histories and possessing secure attachment styles. It’s not super complex.
In fact we can even break down a fairly simple formula for mentally healthy adults:
Love + Acceptance + Presence of Emotionally Available Adults to Model Effective Behaviors & Respect for Boundaries
Secure Attachment + Complete Sense of Self + Resiliency to Navigate the Inevitable Trials of Life
The likelihood of children who are “forced birth” to receive any of the necessary building blocks for a successful adulthood is almost zero. Growing up with a parent who resents your existence is one of the primary building blocks of BPD. The shame that comes from needing nurturance from a person who outwardly dislikes you is one of the primary fueling factors of the chronic feelings of suicidality present with this diagnosis.
The other outcome – that these children end up adopted or in foster care. We’ll just let Texas’s track record speak for itself. Statistically we know that children raised in state care will possess higher ACE (adverse childhood experience) scores which leave them vulnerable to a whole host of physical and mental health diagnoses throughout life.
This law will only serve to create a cohort of children whose lives are steeped in pain, shame & heart wrenching struggles. So I ask Governor Abbot – why do you hate these fetuses so much? That you would wish upon them an existence a full lifetime of despair.
I am in the process of relocating out of the state. My partner and I will be gone by the end of summer. It makes me sad that I will be unable to vote for your opponent next year. But I am wholeheartedly unwilling to to reside in a place with the most oppressive laws against women in the nation. You should be ashamed of yourself, Greg. I truly hope this was the move that puts a women in your office in 2022.
**This blog is my personal space. It is not a debate platform. If you have viewpoints opposing to mine – I encourage you to purchase your own domain and take the time to compose your own well thought out post. My comment section is not the place for it. All comments will be pending approval. We are all entitled to our own opinions, AND this is MY 100% #prochoice space.
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