Actress Lena Dunham says she has never had an abortion, but wishes she had because it’s a sign of “bravery” and “self-knowledge.”
“I always thought that I myself didn’t stigmatize abortion,” Dunham says in the most recent episode of her podcast, titled “Choice.”I’m a – uh abortion rights activist, it’s a huge part of who I am,” she added, but then said she had distanced herself from the issue of abortion in the past.
But one day, when I was visiting a Planned Parenthood in Texas a few years ago, a young girl walked up to me and asked me if I’d like to be a part of her project in which women share their stories of abortions. I sort of jumped. “I haven’t had an abortion,” I told her. I wanted to make it really clear to her that as much as I was going out and fighting for other women’s options, I myself had never had an abortion.
And I realized then that even I was carrying within myself stigma around this issue. Even I, the woman who cares as much as anybody about a woman’s right to choose, felt it was important that people know I was unblemished in this department.
“So many people I love – my mother, my best friends – have had to have abortions for all kinds of reasons,” Dunham said. “I feel so proud of them for their bravery, for their self-knowledge, and it was a really important moment for me then to realize I had internalized some of what society was throwing at us and I had to put it in the garbage. Now I can say that I still haven’t had an abortion, but I wish I had.”