Woman’s Thread About How Her Mother Was Denied The Choice To Not Have Kids Is A Must-Read

In India, a woman’s body is pretty much considered public domain. She is told how it should look like, what it should be clothed in, what she should and shouldn’t do with it. Most importantly, she must never forget her body’s chief duty of reproduction.

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A woman’s refusal to bear children sends society into an overdrive. Abortion is still a word whispered in hushed tones, lest it give women the idea that they’re free to do what they want with their bodies. Birth control, clearly, is not a concept easily grasped by our country.

In the end, the oppressive patriarchal notions dictate what a woman should or should not do with her body. And her choice is left unconsidered, unspoken even.

While we speak of India, the debate on body autonomy rages on in other parts of the world too, including the United States of America. And Twitter user @salstrange emphasised on just how important an issue it is with a powerful thread about her mother.

Back in her mother’s time, women weren’t always as assertive about their bodies and their rights. They mostly followed what their doctors and elders advised them to do.

In the case of Salome’s mother, her birth control wasn’t working effectively because of another medication that she was taking. Therefore, all her pregnancies were unplanned.

Being pregnant at 20 is not unheard of. And one might argue that she was married too, so there really was nothing to worry about. Alas, it wasn’t about her social standing, but her physical health.

Salome’s mother’s pregnancy was a complicated one and she suffered a lot.

A lot of times, having a difficult first pregnancy might deter women from wanting a second child. And it seems only fair. Would you want to willingly do something that might have put your life at risk once, again?

And so, Salome’s mother approached her doctor with the proposition to tie her fallopian tubes so she could prevent further pregnancies.

What followed, instead of understanding and support, was rebuke and shaming.

Wanting a son isn’t just an Indian obsession. A son to carry forward the legacy was still quite the universal notion even now. And the doctor played onto those emotions to influence the woman’s decision.

What’s more, he blamed her work for the stressful pregnancy!

The shaming worked. Salome’s mother was too embarrassed to broach the topic again. Meanwhile, she sunk further into depression.

Her ineffective birth control and lack of medical assistance led to Salome’s mother getting pregnant multiple times in the next five years.

Two miscarriages and one successful pregnancy it took a massive toll on her.

This time, however, her doctor was a different one, who sympathised with her situation. He understood what the woman had been through since her first pregnancy, recognised her need for help, not just for her physical but also mental health.

Can you imagine, having been spurned once before, the amount of courage it must have taken her to ask for it again? But she did.

And this time, her doctor did not fail her.

After all these years, all the threats to her life, and being denied the choice to do what she wanted with her body, Salome’s mother could finally exercise her choice.

In the tweets that follow, Salome fairly condemns how her mother’s first doctor’s actions, supposed to be ‘in her best interest’, actually ended up destroying her personal relationships, and physical and mental well-being.

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The doctor’s shaming of a woman who wanted to make a choice for her own body left a forever impact on her family’s dynamic.

A new mother in her 20s was left unsupported, riddled with shame, and fighting alone with her depression. All this as her relationship with her newborn daughter suffered under strain.

But here’s the saddest part. Right before her tubal ligation procedure, Salome’s mother got pregnant again, despite taking birth control.

Because even now, no medical professional had informed her that her birth control pills were rendered ineffective by the other medication she was taking!

But thanks to a supporting family, she was able to opt for an abortion and save herself from further distress.

In her concluding tweets, Salome, while thankful for her life and her brother’s, wishes her mother could’ve had the choice to not have her children if she didn’t want to. Nobody should’ve made her choice for her.

She even addresses how so many women who end up with unwanted pregnancies due to all the terrible things that happen to them are denied the choice of what to do with their bodies.

It could be for their physical health or their mental health, but the choice must be accorded to them, minus the stigma and shame, to do what they want with their bodies.

For a closing argument, Salome pretty much nails the message, loud and clear.

No, Salome. Thank you.

The Twitter thread evoked a lot of support from women and men who were strongly pro-choice and believed that no one should make a decision about what a person gets to do with their body, but themselves.

Many remarked how this story shuts down all the people who shame/judge women who do not want kids.


It is not selfish. It is a choice.


Giving women the choice…


Many women shared their own stories of difficult pregnancies and how having a choice changed or could have changed their story.

Reproductive autonomy isn’t just for single women.

The message is loud, clear and impactfully delivered.

Her body, her choice. Okay?

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