A recent article in the UK Independent, titled “Mom documents at-home abortion to destigmatise abortion pills”, details a viral TikTok video where 24-year-old Monica, based in the United States, describes her at-home abortion.
The video, posted on July 20th of this year, has amassed over 3 million views, with some comments thanking the young mother-of-one for “sharing her story”, and being so “positive” - but many others are critical of the video.
In the video, over the gentle melody of Chopin’s Nocturne Op 9. No. 2, and after about 20 minutes have elapsed since starting the abortion, Monica describes “passing a lot of blood clots”, which were “huge”.
In the description of the video, she describes the pain of the abortion, describing it as a “10”, comparing it to “being in labor without an epidural.”
Monica goes on to order a take-away and smiles at the camera.
As shared by The Independent, in an interview with Newsweek, Monica went on to say that her reasoning behind sharing the video online was to help abortion to become more “normalised”. In response to perceived ‘negativity’ in her comment section by pro-lifers, Monica said “I helped so many more people than they ever could have with their hatred and that’s what mattered most to me - helping people.”
Later on she added: “I hope that my video will reach the right people who have had questions about abortion and to hopefully clear the misconceptions and lies surrounding it. It’s not as scary as many people have been taught to believe, and they are not alone.”
What really sticks out here, though, is not so much the abhorrent pro-abortion culture in the United States (which, thanks be to God, is changing due to the overturning of Roe v Wade); it’s the disquieting tone of The Independent’s article.
The author starts the article by describing Monica’s video about the murder of her own unborn child as a “brave woman’s choice to detail her at-home abortion experience”.
No mention or comparisons drawn between the experience of Monica in the US, and that of women in the UK taking abortion pills at home, who were behind a “worrying surge in the number of 999 calls” in 2021.
No mention, either, of stories like that of Natalia Isherwood - who became pregnant during the COVID-19 lockdown, and had a home abortion via the UK’s ‘Pills by Post’ programme. Her description of her abortion, at 10 weeks gestation, starkly contrasts with Monica’s up-beat video. Natalia recounted how in the early hours of that tragic morning, she went into her bathroom and began to abort her child, which immediately resulted in “emotional and physical pain”. After taking the pills, she sat on the toilet and looked down:
“What I saw wasn’t a heavy period and it wasn’t a clump of cells – it was a baby . . . it was my baby . . . it was my son”.
So it wasn’t just “blood clots” being passed, as Monica curiously leaves out in her up-beat video.
What’s also curious is why a writer for a UK-based media outlet will fawn over the home abortion of a woman in the US, without mentioning the disasters that have resulted from similar events in the newspaper’s country-of-origin.
One TikToker shared her own abortion experience under Monica’s viral video, which was omitted from The Independent’s article:
The commenter goes on to add that she is, however, glad she didn’t keep her baby, as she feels she isn’t able to be a mother and that she already suffers with her mental health. Similar experiences by other commenters followed:
Strangely, Monica herself admitted to suffering emotionally during the abortion, claiming that she was “crying in the fetal position”. Again, this was not highlighted anywhere in The Independent’s article:
Of the roughly 3,000 comments, hundreds more describe the emotional turmoil and abortion regret experienced by other women. It is a truly unnatural, cruel and horrific experience to go through, that no woman should ever face or be able to “choose”.
As reported in Gript, the reality of the abortion experience here in Ireland can’t be completely ignored or blocked-out, even by abortion providers. In June 2023, research from University College Dublin, published in the Journal of Sexual and Reproductive Health, detailed the responses given by 13 medics (GPs, midwives, obstetricians and nurses) working in abortion provision.
One of the midwives that took part in the study shared her experience in the provision of abortions, saying: “I suppose morally and ethically the hardest thing definitely is seeing the little fetus, you know, at the end of it all … they are formed so well, like even little fingernails and, you know, it’s just unbelievable really the formation even just at, you know, coming up to that twelve-week mark.”
Abortion Rights Campaign themselves reported just how horrific the experience of home-abortions are, in their 2021 study. One participant said, “I wasn’t expecting the level of pain I experienced and was alone in my house which was scary at times.” Another said “I was really shocked at how horrific the actual experience of the termination was”, with a third describing the entire ordeal as “traumatising”. Again, these real, lived experiences contrast greatly with the quirky little video shared by Monica on TikTok and praised by The Independent.
So, I ask The Independent: what exactly is brave about aborting your unborn child?
What is so praise-worthy about taking advantage of the fact that a little human being can be overpowered and have their life ended by the very person who was supposed to care for them, and love them the most?
The article fails to mention any of the comments about how awful the abortion was, or make reference to the horrific cases of at-home abortion which lead to profound abortion regret within the UK.
Are the women who share their abortion regret equally as brave in your eyes? Or should they be ignored and omitted from articles such as yours, as they fly in the face of efforts to “destigmatise abortion”?