It’s not every day that you open the NY Times and find news about Dominicans so, of course, when I saw a link to “For Privacy’s Sake, Taking Risks to End Pregnancy”, I scrambled to open it. What I read when I opened the link and skimmed the article was really troubling. It was sad news.
The article focuses on the troubling nontraditional ways that women in the Dominican community, particularly in Washington Heights, are ending their pregnancies. The article tried not to past judgment but it left me utterly unsettled. The women, the doctors and others interviewed in the article mark a troubling trend of Dominican and other immigrant women taking prescription ulcer medications to induce abortions at home. With both condoms and birth control remote for social and financial reasons, these lost women make, indeed, scary choices.
I grew up in a Washington Heights where it was all too common for a teenage girl to get pregnant. I joked as a teen that it was a requirement at my aunt’s Catholic high school. I never once stopped to think of all the women who were choosing another alternative. As mostly staunch Catholics, Dominicans, I imagine, would find abortion more taboo than bringing a pregnancy to term that would be glaring evidence of sex before marriage. The article, unfortunately, didn’t prove me wrong.