I blogged about how Earth love helps me feel stronger. Herbal abortion knowledge is part of that. It’s a way to use plant power to have control over our own reproduction and health.
Also, I like learning about Earthy ways of doing things as alternative choices. Mainstream medicine hurts me and is so dysfunctional. The health insurance aspect alone is fucked up enough. But also there’s how long we have to wait to get help with serious issues including pain.
There’s over-reliance on drugs, big pharma and their perverse influence. I’ve seen drug reps arrive with lunch, donuts, and swag. There’s fat shaming like I’ve received all my life, to the point of medical phobia, which almost killed me. There’s pathologization of normal emotional responses and normal animal processes, like childbirth.
We don’t need to rely entirely on money and mainstream medicine for our health. For a long, long time that’s been the case–plants are there, whether we know their uses or not. I imagine herbal abortion as rather safe, long ago, when Wise Women had a lot of knowledge and the freedom to attend to people who needed help.
When the knowledge and practices get driven underground by Christianity, patriarchy, and capitalism, that’s when it gets dangerous. The half-remembered ideas are less safe. And the knowledge separated from the doctor-midwives.
Doctors have said to me–herbs are not ok, because the active compounds within them are variable. They told me to trust pills, not herbs, since pills have the active materials standardized and measurable. I looked at the doctors like, “Uh, ok?” They have more power, but I didn’t believe them at all.
The naysaying never made much sense to me, since we all have different bodies that respond to drugs differently. That would be cool, if we all responded to drugs in the same way. So much of the guesswork is because we’re all unique. How they affect us at the beginning, after a while, and when we try to get off them. A huge part of the struggle of meds is that the materials in the pills might be standardized, but human bodies are not.
Also, I hear of factory contamination of pills–nasty pollutants or even accidental additions, like glass found in pills. Or I’ve heard about generics that people respond to differently from name brand drugs, when it’s supposed to be the exact same substance.
Drugs are tested in misogynist ways, dosages based on men’s bodies, and hormonal cycles left out of the equation. I’m not hysterical to fear drugs. A friend’s struggles with benzo withdrawal alone would scare me. I’ve had harrowing struggles getting on and off psych meds also.
Doctors say not to trust herbs because doctors base their lives and bank accounts on mainstream methods. Any other way of doing health has to be wrong. Yes, you can dabble in yoga or positive thinking, and yes you should exercise and “eat right,” but real help comes through surgery or pills.
It reminds me of “no man cometh unto the Father but by Me.” There’s one way to get to heaven: a man who holds knowledge. My designated way to get power is to obey the men who can dole it out to me, by prescription, within capitalism.
I’d prefer to sidestep all of that and go directly to the source. How dare I think I don’t need to go the expensive, time-consuming, racist, misogynist, fat shaming way. That’s what makes me Eve–dangerous and immoral.
I’m not saying mainstream medicine can’t do anything right. I’m glad it saved me when I had that ulcer bleed that almost killed me. But the ulcer bled so long because mainstream medicine and patriarchy had almost killed me. I was disconnected from my body and its sensations because of the trauma of my youth and Christianity. If I’d been raised with a healthy belief system that my body and its needs and sensations matter, I wouldn’t have needed to be saved years later in a hospital.
It was misogyny and Christianity that taught me in the first place that women’s bodies are not reliable, trustworthy sources of knowledge. I was taught every day at school and church that my body was sinful and bad, and that authority was in the hands of men, who I existed to please. The disempowerment made me vulnerable to abuse, which is by design. The more disempowered I was, the more men could use and prey upon me.
If I’d inhabited, listened to, and loved my body as a kid through adult, I never would have grown that ulcer. I would have made health choices based on my actual sensations and needs. Or at least I would have understood how to ask for help years before the ulcer got lethal.
If anti-abortion laws ever get bad around this part of the world, it could be handy to know other ways to do abortion. Or if Ming and I move somewhere more repressed.
Also, some people are traumatized by mainstream medicine and might prefer abortion outside of that context. Like me! If I was having a kid, I would want to give birth outside a hospital, with the helps of a midwife. If I had an abortion, I would prefer the same.
Also, if society breaks down more and more, mainstream medicine might become less available. People who live removed from cities might need home care too.
So I’m slowly learning about herbal abortion, very grateful to the friend who sent me this zine Herbal Abortion.
She sent me a copy of Hot Pants also, which is a zine on DIY gynecology that I’d heard of many times but never seen. Thank you!
I also found some books. So I’m developing a lil trove of herbal abortion knowledge. I’m far from skilled enough to assist myself or others. Maybe I’ll have menopause soon and become unable to get pregnant anyway.
But even anthropologically, I enjoy learning about this health that’s so close to me, of my own body.