What a pleasant surprise! I have to say when I heard about MTV’s special on abortion, No Easy Decision, I geared myself up for disappointment. I wasn’t sure that the network could handle the issue of teen abortion with the respect and compassion that it deserved – especially when I learned that Dr. Drew would be moderating the panel of young women talking about their experiences. But boy was I wrong!
Dr. Drew opened up the episode with this:
“About 750,000 girls in the U.S. get pregnant every year. And although nearly a third of these teen pregnancies result in abortion, we’ve never shown this choice on ’16 and Pregnant’ up until now. It can be a polarizing topic, and there’s quite frankly no way to talk about this and please everyone. Although controversial to some, abortion is one of the three viable options, and it’s among the safest, most common medical procedures in the U.S., so we thought it was important for us to discuss.”
Nice. The show also did a great job of showing the variety of experiences young women can have after abortion – from sadness to relief – and how harmful limitations like parental notifications and lack of health coverage can be.
Now, I still wish the episode was aired a bit earlier and that it was longer – actually, it would be nice if this was a series of conversations, not just one – but I think as first steps go, this was a great one.
I was especially excited to work with the wonderful organization Exhale, who partnered with MTV on the show – they launched a campaign called 16 and Loved to support the young women – Markai, Katie and Natalia – who were brave enough to talk about their experiences on camera. And in case you missed it last night, you can check out the full episode below and the liveblogging that I did along with Jamia Wilson, Lynn Harris, Shelby Knox and Steph Herold at 16 and Loved.
To learn how you can keep supporting the young women on No Easy Decision, go to Exhale.