This is a challenging time to be a woman in America. Washington stands determined to strip us of our rights. Yet, in the face of this, as always, Planned Parenthood continues to serve the needs of women without question or hesitation. For more than 100 years, Planned Parenthood has offered women health care, education, and reproductive choice. Service is provided without regard to race, sexual orientation, political affiliation, or socioeconomic status. In a 2016 survey, 26% of patients at one Planned Parenthood site said it was the only place they could go for the services they required.
As we prepare to screen the Breast Archives in Brattleboro, Vermont on Sunday February 18 at 4pm (Do you have your tickets yet? Get them here!), we’ve spent the past few weeks gathering stories from our friends and sisters about the experiences we’ve had with Planned Parenthood, the value and quality of their services, and their kindness and compassion with which it was delivered.
Here, in their own words, are some of the stories we’ve collected:
“I’ve used Planned Parenthood on several different occasions. When I lived in Florida, I got pregnant and didn’t have a primary care physician or a gynecologist. When I became pregnant and I told them I wanted an abortion, they were completely non-judgmental and supportive, and provided a referral to an abortion clinic without question. I’ve used them many times for gynecological services like the yearly pelvic exam, and the doctors and nurses were very professional. In recent years I’ve used Planned Parenthood as a source for birth control because it’s become too expensive. My life would be drastically different if Planned Parenthood didn’t exist.” – DB
“I grew up in an ultra-religious household where sex was not discussed and the belief was that sex outside of marriage was sinful or just didn’t happen. Therefore, I couldn’t talk to my parents when I became sexually active or get birth control through my normal doctor. I utilized Planned Parenthood all through high school and college for birth control, regular Pap smears, condoms, etc. As a result, I did not have any unplanned pregnancies or contract any STDs and was able to start a family when I was ready, which ended up being in my mid-30’s. I also discovered a lump in one of my breasts in college and Planned Parenthood helped determine that it was a benign cyst, rather than cancer. I am incredibly grateful for their services. Without Planned Parenthood, I could have been been a teen mom who didn’t get to pursue the education and career that I wanted simply because of my religious background and a lack of access to services. I am now a big supporter of Planned Parenthood and I want to make sure others know how valuable and life changing their services are for those who use them.” – LC
“I went to college in Chicago at a Catholic school. They did not talk with us about birth control. So I went to Planned Parenthood for my wellness visits and to get birth control pills. When I graduated and moved to Sacramento, I kept going to Planned Parenthood for my gynecologist check ups. It was not until I moved here to Connecticut, where I don’t know of a Planned Parenthood, that I went to a private doctor. The access in cities to Planned Parenthood are part of what made it a good choice for me, not to mention they were cheap and I could afford their rates.” – DL
“I worked in retail for 20 years and, like everyone in retail, I had terrible insurance. That’s just the reality of life. In 2001, I went to Planned Parenthood for birth control, like most of my friends did. I could get what I needed for only $100 a year. But Planned Parenthood wouldn’t give me birth control without a Pap smear, and mine came back positive. I had a treatable kind of pre-cancerous cervical growth. I never would have gone to the doctor and forked over the money for a Pap smear, but Planned Parenthood made it affordable and caught it early. They even helped me find affordable treatment. It dives me crazy when people say, ‘I can’t support Planned Parenthood because I’m pro-life.’ Planned Parenthood saved my life! I’m a registered Republican and I donate to Planned Parenthood in Mike Pence’s name every month.” –JL
The Breast Archives is proud to stand with Planned Parenthood. We are pleased and proud to screen the film to benefit their work in our communities. We urge you to join us in support of Planned Parenthood, and we urge you to share your stories!