Lena Dunham Apologizes for ‘Delusional Girl’ Abortion Remarks
During a discussion that centered on reproductive choice, Dunham recalled visiting a Planned Parenthood where she was asked to share the story of her abortion. Though she routinely advocates for pro-choice movements, Dunham said it wasn’t until then that she realized she hadn’t actually, herself, had an abortion, so she shared as much (“Even I, the woman who cares as much as anybody about a woman’s right to choose, felt it was important that people know that I was unblemished in this department,” she said on the episode.)
Then, Dunham seemed to take her attempt at empathy one step too far, and observed on the podcast “Now I can say that I still haven’t had an abortion, but I wish I had.”
Followers of Dunham — conservative and liberal — both seemed to agree it went way too far.
Finally something both liberals and conservatives can agree on.
We're all sick of Lena Dunham.
— Nick Jack Pappas (@Pappiness) December 20, 2016
[Lena Dunham visits refugees from Aleppo] Oh wow you got your legs blown off? That's amazing. [looks jealously off into distance]
— Brian Gaar (@briangaar) December 21, 2016
I try not to poke this particular bees nest too often but..
Lena Dunham continues to undo everything my generation fought to provide women.
— Boogie2988 (@Boogie2988) December 21, 2016
We're hurtling toward kleptocracy and Lena Dunham manages to do something abhorrent enough to briefly divert me. Impressive in a vile way.
— Sarah Kendzior (@sarahkendzior) December 21, 2016
Dunham later apologized by means of an Instagram caption in which she said that her remarks were issued by a “delusional girl” identity she frequently assumes. She insisted she didn’t mean to trivialize anyone’s experience.
My latest podcast episode was meant to tell a multifaceted story about reproductive choice in America, to explain the many reasons women do or don't choose to have children and what bodily autonomy really means. I'm so proud of the medley of voices in the episode. I truly hope a distasteful joke on my part won't diminish the amazing work of all the women who participated. My words were spoken from a sort of "delusional girl" persona I often inhabit, a girl who careens between wisdom and ignorance (that's what my TV show is too) and it didn't translate. That's my fault. I would never, ever intentionally trivialize the emotional and physical challenges of terminating a pregnancy. My only goal is to increase awareness and decrease stigma. I take reproductive choice in America more seriously than I take literally anything else, and therefore own full responsibility for any words I speak that don't convey this truth clearly. I know plenty of people will never like a thing that leaves my lips, mea culpas or no, but this apology is for the women who have placed their trust in me. You mean everything to me. My life is and always will be devoted to reproductive justice and freedom. You know how in some households you curse and have to put money in a jar? Well in mine, if you mess up your pro-choice messaging you have to give a sizable donation to abortion funds (https://abortionfunds.org/need-abortion) in New York, Texas and Ohio I look forward to fighting with you all for the next four years and beyond.
“I truly hope a distasteful joke on my part won’t diminish the amazing work of all the women who participated,” she wrote. “My words were spoken from a sort of ‘delusional girl’ persona I often inhabit, a girl who careens between wisdom and ignorance (that’s what my TV show is too) and it didn’t translate. That’s my fault. I would never, ever intentionally trivialize the emotional and physical challenges of terminating a pregnancy. My only goal is to increase awareness and decrease stigma. I take reproductive choice in America more seriously than I take literally anything else, and therefore own full responsibility for any words I speak that don’t convey this truth clearly.”
What do you make of Dunham’s apology? Share your thoughts in the comments.
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