Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Sandra Fluke, God & my uterus.

Not like it's a secret, but I was born and raised Catholic. At the ripe old age of 15, basically the first moment I had the chance to do my on thing, I left the church. Over the years this part of my past has come up, mostly as the butt of a joke or me venting about my dislike, I wish I could say I wasn't bitter, but I am. Still, I try to not let that grudge get in the way of things. Some people think because I refuse to be part of Catholicism means I have no faith, no beliefs and that I'm some kind of heathen who worships golden idols. This is not true, I have a lot of faith and I believe a lot of things, but these comments have only fortified why I left that religious sect and why I'm not a fan of conformed religion in general.

You know, the "My god is better than your god" crap. Not a fan.

But as a child, I jumped through all the hoops. I was baptised "Terese" and confirmed "Francis" and did all the small steps in between. I was no "C&E" Christian (a person that only goes to mass on Christmas and Easter) - we went to church every Sunday, even I was dragged there kicking and screaming. We fasted before mass, like good Catholics and ate too much when we came back home - also like good Catholics - and after mass - between fasting and brunch, after we had sat there for 45+ minutes listening to the sermon of the day, the lectured about God's will and his Love for us, we stood on the steps of the church and gossiped, just like good Catholics. 

My grade school was catholic - Sts Cyril and Methodius. The school was so small, that people in my town didn't even know it existed. Hell, there were 15 people (8 girls and 7 Boys) in my graduating class. When the school closed it's doors a few years back I was neither surprised or sad. I have bad memories of this time - but that's another blog on it's own.

My high school was all girl St. Augustine Academy, where we had around 63 girls in our graduating class, also closed it's doors a few years back. No one bullied me there - there I learned about sisterhood and I still have some great friends I met at SAA. 

I went to church bazaars.
I went to church mixers.
I even helped those poor public school kids in PSR who were so unfortunate they couldn't just GO to a good Catholic school. Yes, this is how I thought ALL the time.

I was raised Catholic, which simply made me better. Which is a lie, because no one is better than anyone else - that is a simple truth. 

In this grade school and high school, we had "Sex Education" solely because it was mandated by law. In grade school the teachers dismantled our sex education books. Cutting off the binding and removing the sections that showed/spoke about Male and Female reproductive organs. I know this because they forgot to pull the info from one book and that book became the one everyone just had to had. Yes, by "protecting" us from the vulgar images of the penis and the vagina, they turned it into a joke.
In high school we were taught by a virgin nun. In grade school we giggled. In high school we tortured the poor woman, because we understood she didn't have sex and how can you teach a subject you don't know? (teenagers...)

This is what's wrong. It was wrong then and it's wrong now because nothing makes sense about hiding. If we don't talk about things they will just "go away" is a myth. 

In high school we were giving a chart so we could learn about our "flow" to know when it was the safest time to have sex. Not that we should be having sex - I mean, it was frowned upon. Yet, at the same time, if you did have sex and you DID accidentally get pregnant (which happened a few times while I was there) there was a day care - but you know what you couldn't do at St. Augustine Academy? You couldn't be married. If they found out you were married you would be expelled. 

So this is what I learned from my childhood as a Catholic.
If I don't think about sex - it'll go away.
If I don't know about my body - I won't use it for sex.
Seeing that I've been taught to live in ignorant bliss, if I happen to come in conjugal contact with an evil boy who weakens my resolve and convinces me that I should have sex (because all the cool kids are doing it) and then get pregnant - my school will care for my child, but if I marry the boy they'll 86 my butt.

But that's OK because I'm better than then most. Remember? I'm Catholic.

Let's all be shocked that I made it to the ripe old age of 15 to get the hell out of there. Now, this doesn't mean I hate all Catholics. I don't. I dislike (strongly) extremists. But normal people looking for that something that speaks to their soul like my mother and sister who go to church every week, to each their own. I know some wonderful people who are Christian and they are beautiful and caring and loving. I am in no way or shaping talking about them, but this was my experience growing. This is what happened to me - specifically. 

When the news of Sandra Flukes testimony hit the internet and then the slanderous remarks from Rush Limbaugh and Patricia Heaton followed it was like being transported back to 1988 when I was taught if a girl let a boy - gulp - feel her up... she was a whore. 

Firstly, Sandra Fluke was and is backing the availability of birth control for females for reasons outside of simply to avoiding unwanted pregnancies. Don't believe me? Read instead of speculating.

Secondly, sex is not evil. It is not wrong. It is not bad. It is natural. You know what is not natural? The fact that so many people don't understand their reproductive organs. I once had to sit a 20 year old down and explain to them that you could use a tampon and pee. Placing a tampon inside your vagina will not inhibit your peeing habit. You may ask why, because the vagina and the urethra are not the same thing. By the way, I was 22 when I had that conversation and you know what? She had a kid.

Being female and wanting to have sex is normal.
Being smart and using condoms and birth control is commendable. It's also a big deal, because out side of using condoms or having a vasectomy - men don't have to worry about it. It's all on us to not get pregnant.  
Using birth control doesn't make you a whore, a slut, a tramp, "easy" or what ever school yard taunt people will throw at you.

Living in a world where birth control is readily available would not lead to some freaking orgy. If you think this is true, it makes me wonder what your sex dreams look like... 

You know what else? I love sex. It's one of my very favorite things to do with my husband and if I wasn't married to him, it would still be one of my very favorite things to do with him. It's fun.
You know what else? I have an IUD and I can't have it removed, because my insurance wouldn't cover it, back when I had insurance. That means I have about 2 years to find someone who will remove it for me and to make it even more difficult, the IUD is high up, and slightly hidden, so to have it removed the doctor would need an ultrasound machine to see it so they don't puncture my uterus getting it out - which I was never told could be an issue when I had it inserted by another doctor. She also never told me that it could lead to ovarian cysts - which I've also had since I had it put in place. And she didn't tell me that it would put me into early menopause - which it did. 

Not having insurance means that right now I'm playing a gambling game. In two years will I have the abilities to have children any more? Granted, I don't want any more kids, at least not from the "old fashion way" if I have more it will be because of adoption, but I would like to know if I can't have this IUD removed, which its looking that way, will I lose my reproductive organs?

All of this leads back to simple health care. 

Look who is yelling and calling names - two people who have health care at their finger tips. They don't have to worry about doctors, specialist, etc. Hell, Limbaugh was addicted to prescription drugs, which would imply he had a doctor who gave him a prescription and that would imply insurance
And Patricia Heaton... what a huge let down. How sheltered and narrow minded one must be to turn on their own gender?

It's about respect and understanding. 
We are all different creatures, which is what makes us special. 
Being Catholic in no way made me better than anyone else out there, just like being male in no way makes you better then me because I'm female, just like being straight in no way makes you better than someone who is gay.

The fact that I want to be in charge of my body doesn't make me a slut. It makes me responsible. 
The fact that I'm pro-choice doesn't make me a orgy attending baby killer. It makes me honest, because honestly, who am I to tell you how to live your life, and who are you to tell me?

Health care - all avenues of it - should be available to EVERY citizen of this country. Not just the 1% and when I put it like that, I guess this all lead back to something else now doesn't it? The Occupy Movement.

Do you really think God would only want some of his/her children to be taken care of? If you say yes, I think you should question your parenting ability.

I'm giving a standing ovation to Sandra Fluke for standing up for woman every where.
As for God and my uterus, they're really none of your business.


  1. Love it Aryn! So true...I went to a convent when I was really young - and lived in Kenya. They were sweet, but then going on to boarding school in S. Africa I got a big dose of mandatory religion and watch a homeless person get kicked out of church because he had no shoes. I left with him.
    Health care should be for us all. I'm tired of the bullies who abuse their so-called power over us. We do need the Occupy movement but they are taking our rights away from even protesting in some government areas. And now because of it, we get to pay for the secret service to protect idiots like Santorum. We need to all stand up to these bullies and change the system together.

  2. I agree. The pot is bubbling, but there is no one leading the troops. Where is MLK and JFK?
    This country is supposed to be a democracy, but any more it's capitalism in it's purest form. The one with all the money wins and we're all left to ask why.

  3. All I can do is stand, and clap. Excellent stuff Aryn.

  4. I'm just so sick of this petty crap. It's all very simple - we all deserve the right to be who we are, have medical coverage, worship who we want and love who we want too.

  5. Very perfectly stated. You made me laugh, you made me gasp and in the end stand up and shout "AMEN"! :-)

  6. So if your uterus is none of the taxpayer's business, do not ask the taxpayer to cover what is almost always not at all a question of health care, but a personal decision to live or behave a certain way. If it is a private matter, do not help to create an ethos that promotes sexual activity among those who are not ready to handle the consequences of it. That is where it becomes a public and societal issue that affects millions of people.

    And don't forget the dark side of sexual liberation, the worst of which is 52 million abortions in this country alone. Your uterus is really not the only thing involved. New human lives are at stake. http://www.lifenews.com/2010/01/22/nat-5910/

    There is a lot of collective and age-old wisdom that you want to sneer at, but some of it just might be a few light years ahead of you.

    Being too strict about sex is bad, but I'll be a lot fewer people die from that approach than from the opposite one, which is the one that is far more rampant and dangerous these days.

    Peace to you. Follow your deepest conscience. No one can expect more. I learned that in the Catholic Church.

  7. First - Childbirth is also a personal choice, which means this should go both ways.

    Second - the "dark side of sexual liberation" in my opinion would be sex trafficking - 75% are woman and children, some as young 5 - some younger.

    I do not sneer at wisdom, as I stated in my post "... this doesn't mean I hate all Catholics. I don't. I dislike (strongly) extremists." I do not sneer in general - once again to quote myself "...because no one is better than anyone else - that is a simple truth." But at the end of the day, none of that matters because of Separation of Church and State. Maybe this health care issues is a moral problem for religious sects, but it should not be government issue. The well-being and general health care of the citizens of this country IS and should be a government issue.

    To quote:
    "…government must be neutral among religions and nonreligion: it cannot promote, endorse, or fund religion or religious institutions."

    "In the words of [Thomas] Jefferson, the clause against establishment of religion by law was intended to erect "a wall of separation between church and State." from the Everson decision: -> http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/search/display.html?terms=Everson&url=/supct/html/historics/USSC_CR_0330_0001_ZO.html

    My conscience is clear, as is my heart. The citizens of this country, no matter their gender, sexual preference, ethnic background, or religious beliefs deserve the right to the medical coverage they need to lead a happy and healthy life.

    And to quote the declaration of independence -> "That all men are by nature equally free and independent, and have certain inherent rights, of which, when they enter into a state of society, they cannot, by any compact, deprive or divest their posterity; namely, the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety."