Planned Parenthood was where I felt safe to go as a young college student.
I was a freshmen at Yale University when I had sex for the first time with my college boyfriend. I used a condom, but that didn’t prevent me from panicking when my period didn’t come on time the next month.
I knew there was a Student Health office but I didn’t trust that my information would be protected from my parents. Going to a drug store to get a pregnancy test felt too embarrassing. So I went to the place where I knew I could remain anonymous, and where I knew I would receive quality medical care: Planned Parenthood.
(Thankfully, I wasn’t pregnant, and my period came the next week. I was able to get birth control pills started at Planned Parenthood, too.)
This administration claims that there are many options besides Title X clinics to get reproductive health care. This may be true, but in some states, Title X clinics are the only places where a minor can receive confidential health care. Moreover, Title X clinics like Planned Parenthood have brand recognition – it’s where a scared, medically naive teenager knows to go when they have a health concern.
Please don’t defund these clinics. It will take away a valuable resource for adolescents and young adults to practice their healthcare autonomy in safe and recognized space.