The Difference Between Two Lists

I just read a super, super good article that I had to share immediately.  More concisely written than I could have ever done.  She hits the nail on the head with the same hammer that hit me on the head about 4 years ago (did that even make sense? At least it provided an interesting mental picture!).

It has never been about “it” being or not being a baby.  Everyone knows its a baby.  The difference is in the lists.  Here’s a snippet, but I encourage you to go read the whole article here.

It was then that I could finally articulate the source of the anger I’d felt all these years. In every society, there are two critical lists: acceptable conditions for having a baby, and acceptable conditions for having sex. From time immemorial, the one thing that almost every society had in common is that their two lists matched up. It was only with the widespread acceptance of contraception in the middle of the 20th century, creating an upheaval in the public psyche in which sex and babies no longer went hand-in-hand, that the two lists began to diverge. And now, in 21st-century America, they look something like this:
Conditions under which it is acceptable to have sex:
  • If you’re in a stable relationship
  • If you feel emotionally ready
  • If you’re free of sexually transmitted diseases
  • If you have access to contraception
Conditions under which it is acceptable to have a baby:
  • If you can afford it
  • If you’ve finished your education
  • If you feel emotionally ready to parent a child
  • If your partner would make a good parent
  • If you’re ready for all the lifestyle changes that would be involved with parenthood
As long as those two lists do not match, we will live in a culture where abortion is common and where women are at war with their own bodies.
This is one reason why I believe NFP truly empowers women.

7 thoughts on “The Difference Between Two Lists

  1. I agree with you and the article that I also read earlier. It is a concise and powerful message. My only question about it not being an “it” is how it is so easy to label it as choice and not a life. Although I don’t really believe signs that say “abortion is murder” are helpful, I do think people have used terms like “fetus” “terminating a pregnancy” etc in a way that has desensitized us completely from the idea of murder. If we all truly knew it was murder, would it still be legal? I hope not.

  2. I agree that this article is wonderful!

    Alison, Elizabeth, if you’d like to know what someone who is pro-choice thinks about the article, go check out my facebook wall and see for yourself. it’s rough. :)

  3. There are a lot of other sad things that happen as well when those lists don’t match. I do agree that people should be ready to have kids if they are going to have sex. When I say “be ready” I mean be willing because who is ever really ready? Parenthood is a never ending learning process.

    • hey i think that’s a really good point of clarification. its like marriage. i don’t know if everyone is ever really “ready” since you have no way of telling exactly what it will be like, but if you’re willing to accept all that comes with it is the question. with being a parent its even more extreme.

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