Pregnant People: A Trans View on Abortion Rights Messaging
This week, a wave of fear and anger swept across the country when we learned that the U.S. Supreme Court intends to overturn Roe v. Wade. While the leaked decision is a draft, not final, the right to abortion seems all but certain to be left to individual U.S. states to decide. As many state legislatures are ready to outlaw or severely restrict abortion access — or already have — this development is a devastating blow to bodily autonomy.
I will not discuss the merits of Roe or the apparent decision to overturn it in this blog entry. I support the unrestricted right to abortion on demand at any stage of pregnancy, and will not debate this stance in the comments or elsewhere. (I will not use the terms “pro choice” or “pro life”, which are often misused and misleading.) What I will discuss here is the messaging around the right to abortion by those of us who support it.
For reference, I am an agender trans person who was assigned female at birth and transitioned to male for legal, medical, and social purposes. I have never been pregnant, have never wanted to become pregnant, and have never wanted to parent children. As I am now 52 years old and have been on testosterone therapy for over eight years, it is extremely unlikely that I could become pregnant. However, I was still ovulating as recently as two years ago; when I took a break from hormones at the beginning of the pandemic, I began menstruating again.
Menstruation Does Not Define Me
Gender and sex cannot be reduced to reproductive organs
(Sidenote: If you know of any studies of transmasculine people and menopause, please let me know; I could really use some accurate information.)
Since I am not a woman but do have a uterus and ovaries, I am glad to see a heightened awareness of people like myself in messaging that refers to “pregnant people” rather than women. Whether we are acknowledged or not, the fact is that trans men and non-binary transmasculine people can and do get pregnant, and need access to abortions just as much as cis women do.