This Common Secret

I just read “This Common Secret” By Susan Wicklund.

I want to add my voice to the chorus of praise for this book. It was moving and really showed Women as the center of the stories. So often when Abortion is discussed it is in terms of the “unborn Child”. Regardless of how one feels about a fetus, this book makes it clear, women WILL have abortions. Providing them safely is the only option that is not cruel.

Of course, I am the choir. I was pro-choice before reading the book. I would love to know the reaction of someone considers themselves pro-life. Not the wack jobs killing people, but just someone down the street.

And whatever your views, this book will make you think, it will move you.

I’m in so much awe of Susan Wicklund that i really am having trouble finding words to express how much I think everyone should read this book.

Some excerpts:


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3 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. As a man, I feel unqualified to comment intelligently on this issue. I consider myself both pro-life and pro-choice. I do not see a conflict in those positions. All women should have a choice, but I still value all life. Each decision regarding abortion is a personal and individual one based upon unique circumstances. Some of those decisions are ethically better than others. The except regarding the 13 yr old is a decision brought about by a crime (incest/rape) not a mistake in judgement. An abortion by a young couple who’ve made a mistake or by an older woman who has been told her child will have Down’s Syndrome are markedly different decisions than that of a woman with a substance abuse problem that has her 4th abortion. From a public policy standpoint, we need to stop assuming that all situations are equal and equally protected.

    As I said, as a man, my opinion is fundamentally uniformed.

  2. I haven’t read the book yet, but I just heard Dr. Wicklund interviewed on NPR last week and I was very excited to hear someone standing up to announce this reality. I was just discussing with an acquaintance about how/why abortions are so common yet so secret (I work in a bookstore part time, she was looking for books on the subject), and then I hear about this new book.
    In her interview, Dr. Wicklund emphasized the point that she’s really frightened that we’ve come to the point where we can’t talk about it in our culture, that pro-life activists have defined the frame for this discussion.
    I found myself wanting to call her and talk to her, because as a woman who had an extremely complicated abortion at age 19, I felt like I experienced first-hand how/why this becomes so secretive. Because it’s the way MEN heal from loss. In my relationship, I was not “allowed” to discuss the issue or experience in order to heal, as many times women need to do. My partner at the time just wanted to pretend it never happened, even though it landed me in the hospital for over a week and I had to try to come up with something to tell my college professors.
    It’s not an issue of men being informed (by the way RedSky, you seem to be one of the most enlightened men I’ve heard on the subject…being both pro-life and pro-choice can definitely work together). It’s an issue of how men and women deal with emotional experience in this life. And VALUING life means valuing ALL life, including the woman’s sense of self-determination in her own life.
    When I find that men are the primary protesters in this whole process, it just makes me think that we’ve actually come to the point in this country where we’re willing to take rights AWAY from a majority of the population so that men can still exert some sort of control over our reproductivity, as if they own us. This is a huge issue that is not being discussed publicly enough, and I’m SO glad to hear about this book. Hopefully it means we can reframe the debate.

  3. I’m pro-life. I’ll say that straight out. While i’m not for a police state form of pro-life legislation. I believe if you don’t want the kid, put him up for adoption. It ain’t that hard. But you’re going to kill a life because you didn’t figure on getting pregnant? I don’t see that as right. Its like trying to get rid of a mistake. It just don’t seem right. I agree that maybe abortion should only used in rape, or cases where the child will die painfully and horribly soon after birth.


    why is it ok “to kill a life” just because the start of it was violence. doesn’t violence beget violence?

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