On the second day of our recent Youth Advocacy Institute, we watched a 20 minute clip from the Romanian Film, 4 weeks, 3 months, 2 days. Those of you who have watched this film know that this is about solidarity and sisterhood in the face of a complete ban on safe abortion during the late 1980s in Romania. The protagonists, one of whom seeks an abortion, are forced to rent a room in a hotel, and look for a provider. A mysterious man called Mr. Bebe offers to perform the abortion, and while the young women collect as much money as they can, he asks them to have sex with him in order to dilate the pregnant woman’s cervix and insert a probe. The risk they take, the power relations between the man the two women, the transactional sex, the abortion law, the absence of the man responsible for the pregnancy, the solidarity, and the use of cinema itself as a tool led to many passionate conversations between the participants at the workshop.
During the session on Content Creation which I facilitated with help from Rola Yasmine and Yu Yang, ASAP’s Youth Champions from last year, these conversations lent themselves into topics for messages on Facebook, Twitter and blogs.
You can read some of the fascinating new blogs here:
Sarah Soyza, Sri Lanka – To my Dearest Safe Abortion Haters
More than 800 abortions A DAY in Sri Lanka!! WAIT….. Abortion is illegal in Sri Lanka, from where do these women who sleep around get these abortions from? OMG Disgusting! These young people just screw around and then go get abortions like buying clothes from a store! This is all the Hindi movies they watch, mobile phones and the internet! Our culture is just destroyed! Shame! And you people will support anything if you get good money from these NGO s and the government provided free education for you! Sigh!!
Sarah Jane Biton, Philippines – Is It Her Fault ?
Every minute of our everyday a woman is having an unsafe abortion in the Philippines. 214 women daily seek medical care due to complications. And three women everyday die because of unsafe abortion. (Data Source: Guttmacher Institute)
Those women have different stories and different reasons why they decided to terminate their pregnancy. But, whatever it may be, there is one thing common among them. They suffered and struggled to end their suffering. They fought for their lives. They had striven against the socio-economic, legal and cultural strains of the society.
Smriti Thapa, Nepal – THERE IS NO SUCH THING CALLED NO ABORTION, THERE IS EITHER SAFE ABORTION OR UNSAFE ABORTION
I happen to watch this movie named 4MONTHS, 3WEEKS and 2 DAYS which has plunged me into deeper contemplation on the poignant realities of world where Unsafe abortion are still avoidable tragedies in many countries. Though the abortion in the movie does not result out to be unsafe but the context in which the abortion was provided could have fostered equal probability unsafe abortion. She could have been the victim of unsafe abortion and died .The cost at which these abortion takes place in countries where abortion are illegal and punishable are really harsh and unimaginable. Being the part of this global world it has inspired me to be vocal about the statements as THERE IS NO SUCH THING CALLED NO ABORTION, THERE IS EITHER SAFE ABORTION OR UNSAFE ABORTION regarding the safe abortion and the strict laws that compels women towards the unsafe abortion.
Shruti Mukerjee, India – Cinema As a Tool to Address the Issue of Safe Abortion and The Concept of ‘Choice’.
Does choice exist in a vacuum? Or are there circumstances which shape, restrict and constraint our choices? These disturbing questions were ringing on my head when I recently saw a Romanian movie, 4 months, 3 weeks and 2 days. The movie is set in communist Romania where abortion is restricted by law. The story revolves around two girls, one of them pregnant and wanting to get an abortion. They end up contacting a quack who agrees to provide the service but on conditions. The conditions are not just monetary but sexual transaction from the friend of the girl seeking abortion.
Tia Setiyani, Indonesia – Back Alley Abortions Are Dirty and Dangerous
The 2007 film of 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days shows us the reality of unsafe abortion. Set in Romania when abortion was illegal, this movie tells the story of two university students, friends Otilia and Gabita who arrange an abortion for Gabita in hotel room. Before performing the abortion; they don’t had enough money to pay full the man who conduct the abortion process. So, Otilia and Gabita on under pressure having sex with him for completed payment, and also they endure the painful physical and emotional side effects of undergoing an illegal and unsafe abortion.
We can remember other women who have died because they did not have access to safe and legal abortions.
Many women died because they did not have access to safe and legal abortions, you can read their story here. When you go through their stories, you will found out that actually since 1929 up to now women still facing the same situation and risks.
Faiqoh Ka, Indonesia: Love Is Not Abuse
Some women feel a sense of dependency with their partner. It will lead to domination on one side. It will be exacerbated if her partner is someone that often imposes his will.
More blogs from participants coming tomorrow… But do read these and respond to their views!