Abortion, illegal but prevalent in Antigua and Barbuda


by LOOP:

Buying milk from a neighbourhood shop that’s how easy it is to obtain abortion pills in Antigua despite it still being ‘on the books.’ CLICK HERE TO JOIN WHAT’S APP GROUP.

All you need to know is where and how much and that information is not difficult to obtain in such a small country.

Speaking on the condition of anonymity, a few women shared their experiences.

“I had one last year and I never had any problems. I just paid the pharmacist and got it,” a 19-year-old told Loop Caribbean.

Another woman,23, who said has never gotten pregnant, said she was told exactly how to get the pill by a close friend.

“From what my friend told me; I didn’t even believe that it is still illegal.”

One woman, 36, who has had two abortions in her lifetime; one as recent as two years ago, explained the procedure to obtain the illegal pill.

Speaking specifically about her most recent experience she said: “the buying part is as easy as 1 2 3.”

“You simply go to one of the pharmacies that sell them and walk straight to the pharmacist and ask for it. The pharmacist will ask you how far along you are because you shouldn’t take it if you are more than 10 weeks.

“I was 9 weeks because I was still considering whether to do it or not.  The pharmacist may ask you other questions too like if you’ve ever done an abortion before but once everything is fine you will be given another pill to purchase such as painkillers and when you go back to the pharmacist to collect it, he will give you the abortion pills and explain what to do and you pay $350 plus whatever you paid for the painkillers.”

The woman said that there is nothing to fear when conducting the transaction. “You won’t be side-eyed or anything,” she said.

She went on to disclose that you are given four small tablets that you must insert vaginally.

Based on what she shared, it is at this juncture, that the difficult part begins.

The mother of three said that after some time passed after taking the pill, she started to feel pains similar to contractions.

“…my entire bed was wet. My water broke or so it felt.”

“Soon after I felt the urge to run to the bathroom and as soon as I sat on the toilet something came out and when I checked it looked like pieces of a fetus. I bled for a few days after that.”

But according to her, “even the physical pain is nothing compared to the emotional pain you feel when having to get rid of a child.”

Now, despite the accessibility of the pill, the subject is still taboo across many sections of society.

That coupled with the cost, force some women to try more ‘traditional’ methods such as drinking hot Guinness or neem bush; techniques which are not proven to be effective.

Public discussions surrounding the matter indicate that many are ready for the law to be repealed.

And according to Antigua’s Attorney General Steadroy Benjamin, the government is open to having consultations “at the appropriate time.”

He said: “It is intended to have some public discussions on that matter and then make a determination as to where we go from there.”

Benjamin however said he is in support of making some changes.

“There are many persons that are of the view and I share that particular view that abortions are to be given in special circumstances for example, where the health of the mother is concerned or whether the pregnancy is as a result of an act of violence such as rape and other matters like that,” he shared.

Antigua and Barbuda’s current legislation – unchanged since the 19th century – cites a sentence of up to 10 years for any woman who “procures her own miscarriage”. CLICK HERE TO JOIN WHAT’S APP GROUP.

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    • No, the pharmacists should not be jailed…I think that is a very insular comment and totally without consideration to the plight of the women involved.
      Everyone is entitled to their own opinion on the abortion issue. However, there are also many who believe in a woman’s right to choose. Legal early term abortion is, in my opinion, the best way to go especially since making the pills and/or procedure illegal can lead to delays along with ethical and medical complications. Abortions are going to happen anyway so common sense should dictate that it is far better to have legally authorized qualified people dealing with the issue.

      • Sorry, but I have very little sympathy for the idea that society should make abortion safe to preserve the life of the mother. If I happen upon one person trying to kill another but doing so in a way that is “unsafe” to them, I am not going to jump in there to help them out. If you “choose” to have an abortion then you “choose” to do so at your own risk.

        • Furthermore, is there any evidence that these women are in any real “plight”?
          Why didn’t the reporter ask them what led them to “choose” that path. The one person I know of who had one, dying in the process, chose to do so because she already had two kids and just broke up with her boyfriend. She could have just asked for help raising her three kids. I would rather jump in to help with that

      • Murder is going to happen anyway. So, let’s just make it safe and legal. Sounds very commonsensical…

      • Everyone is entitled to their own personal opinion on murder of adults as well. Those of us who believe it is wrong jail the ones who think it is right and try to carry it out. That’s how society works actually.

        In the past people were not aware that the “clump of cells”, “embryo”, “fetus” or whatever label you choose was in fact a complete human being from the moment of conception based on its unique human DNA, just like at one time they “believed” that black people were not fully human. They can be forgiven for past ignorant acts The science has now advanced to the point that it is a fact, not merely a matter of personal opinion, that an abortion takes a separate human life. There is no justification for treating a person in the womb any different to a person outside the womb.

  1. There are other ways to help rape victims besides encouraging them to take a life…

  2. And we wonder why God allowed COVID…
    Everyone so eager to slaughter the innocent these days…
    Crying for our own lives while happy to destroy others…
    How hypocritical of us…

  3. This article does not prove that it is “prevalent”. The reporter evidently is in a circle of people who practice that. I don’t know anyone who has had one except for a near neighbourhood girl who died in the act – just normal pro-family people in my circle. To prove “prevalence” an independent nationwide survey would be needed. Changing the laws for a few people would be unwise.

  4. I personally disagree with abortion but I am tired of fighting the irrational arguments that people choose to promote it. I only debate it because I don’t want the next generation of girls growing up to be misled to believe that it is necessary or justifiable. I think it is important for them to hear the counterarguments that many in mainstream media do not highlight.

    Truth be told though, if people who support it do away with their offspring then the future will belong to normal pro-life people anyway. Sorry for the babies but they would probably just grow up to be like their parents anyway. So, if you want so badly to do away with your own kind have at it.

  5. I dnt deal up with abortion I believe in once a child has been crested inside of you
    That child has name
    From God has a future, but are these ladies an ediat to be explaining where an wen they got the pill 💊 telling there life story it is insane wats the use doing it then talk about it.They can get these pharmacist in problem you know,such dumb ppl

  6. The hypocrisy of the church, so called Christians, Republicans in the US and men in general is nauseating.

    Firstly, the church; as long as priests continue to molest young boys and girls they don’t get to tell me what to do with my body. As long these so called pastors continue to have sex with young girls and women in their congregation, they don’t get to tell me what to do with my body. Do you really think these encounters don’t ever result in pregnancies and it’s “taken care of,” please.

    Secondly, so called Christians; as long as they continue to cheat on their wives and husbands with each others’ friends, “church sisters” and “church brothers” they don’t get to tell me what to do with my body. Do your really think theses encounters don’t ever result in pregnancies and it’s “taken care of,” please.

    Thirdly, Republicans want to overturn Roe vs Wade. So what, Republicans are perfect and don’t have affairs? Do you really think these encounters don’t ever result in pregnancies and it’s “taken care of,” please. There was a law recently passed in Tennessee where if a drunk driver killed a parent, they would have to pay child support for the children until they turn 18. If Roe vs Wade is overturned then there should a law similar to that. When the child is born a DNA test is done to determine who the father is and that person is then legally bound by the courts to support that child until he/she turns 18. If you want to force me to have a child then you should also to forced to support said child. I wonder how many Republicans and men in general would be in favour of such a law?

    And finally men in general; if by some strange twist of fate, we were suddenly in a twilight zone where men were able to have children, don’t you think they would want a choice of whether to do so or not. If a man was raped or molested by a male family member would he want to be forced to give birth to that child? If a man knew that every time he went into labour that he was literally putting his life on the line because there can always be complications in giving birth, don’t you think he would want a choice.

    It is the hypocrisy that I can’t stand, because many people say one thing but do different. Many people say one thing but have secretly inserted pills or paid for those pills. Would any man want to be forced to freeze their sperm and then forced to have a vasectomy, please. I say all that to say that, yes, I know that giving birth to a child is a beautiful thing, but life isn’t always perfect, not everyone is living comfortably, not everyone has the same support mechanisms, not all men own up to their responsibilities and at the end of the day it is my body, so it is my choice.

  7. Abortion, illegal but prevalent in Antigua and Barbuda.
    Buggery, illegal but prevalent in Antigua and Barbuda.
    Statutory Rape, illegal but prevalent in Antigua and Barbuda.
    Incest, illegal (I won’t say prevalent but it does happen) in Antigua and Barbuda.
    I wonder how many people have broken at least one of these laws. I wonder how many politicians?

  8. My best friend had an abortion when she was 18, she is now 56, and she would still tell you up to this day that’s it’s the worse mistake she ever made and the guilt is forever present with her. Many of us were born through the act of sin, most of us are bastard children, so should we be killed because we were conceived through a sinful ac, whether it be rape, cheating on someone, or whatever?

  9. Hey, if abortion is illegal in the Nation, where are the company(s) which have being given a licence, to operate Stem Cell centers getting their legal fetuses from to do their research?
    Are aborted fetuses being brought into the Nation?

  10. Abortion is big business, especially the supply of fetal cells, so there will always be someone willing to play on the heart strings of people who feel strongly about it. One woman spoke of the pain of “having to” abort a child. Shame on a society that makes a woman to feel like she has to end a life (although I don’t agree with the “have to” either). I don’t know whether people have been paying attention but with all the toxic products making their way into a woman’s body these days (including one which a lot of people got beginning last year), a lot of women are going to be in want of a child which they cannot produce themselves.

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