I Was a Teenage Underground Abortion Provider
I was a not-quite-teenager, living in Texas, home of the big fight for a woman to make her own decisions about abortion, during the time leading up to Roe v Wade. My best friend's mom and older sister were members of an underground organization that operated illegally to provide both birth control pills and abortions for women who needed them.
It's difficult for anyone who didn't live through that time to realize that many women had to get permission from their husbands to practice birth control. Often they couldn't get this permission and so they went behind their husbands' backs and turned to groups like ours.
This group was a loose affiliation of women and older teenagers who obtained prescriptions for birth control pills and then donated all or part of their prescriptions to our group, where we repackaged them either as a few month's supply disguised as other pills [baby aspirin iirc] or as emergency contraception [six pills total, two pills to be taken each day for the three days following unprotected sex].
My best friend and I and even the older teens were considered to be too young to be trusted with the more sensitive missions, so we sat at the kitchen table counting and packaging pills. Sometimes the women who were donating their pills brought them to the house, other times someone in our group went around to the womens homes to collect them. Once packaged, the pills were delivered to their intended recipients, in many cases only after making sure the husband would not be home at the time that they were delivered.
What I didn't learn until I'd been packaging pills for some time was that the group also arranged abortions for some women. I never learned the details of how this part worked, but it was all very shadowy, and if you take some time to read the story of Jane, you can understand why.
Simultaneously, women need to build an Underground Railroad of abortion providers and patient transportation (working with Planned Parenthood, for example) so we’re not just at the mercy of the goddamn Democrats. Enough with the blackmail!
and because I'm of the opinion that forewarned is forearmed, thought that I'd give you what little I can of firsthand reporting.
Meanwhile, I'd set up another such underground railroad again, in a heartbeat, if it becomes necessary.