June 27, 2022
Rachel McCrickard, LMFT
Each week, our founder, Rachel, writes about her learnings and reflections in our newsletter, Mondays with Motivo. Sign up below to receive it in your inbox.
June 26, 2022
By: Rachel McCrickard
This is a hard one to write. I laid in bed all morning today (Saturday) trying to decide how I could bring sense, comfort, or hope through Mondays with Motivo, when I’m experiencing none of those feelings myself, in light of the overturn of Roe v Wade.
I’m guessing some of you might have experienced similar feelings during your Friday client sessions — as you tried to hold space for the emotions of your clients while also, no doubt, experiencing your own complicated range of emotions.
I want to share a personal story that is uncomfortable for me to talk about.
As I’ve mentioned here before, I attended a Christian college for undergrad. My major was Theology and I was required to complete a semester-long internship at a church or faith-based organization.
I chose to complete my internship at Focus on the Family in Colorado Springs, CO. I’m embarrassed about this now and I hardly ever talk about it because, in hindsight, I see that Focus on the Family, and other organizations like it, have done an incredible amount of harm to the work of social and racial justice.
One of our “assignments” during my time there was to participate in an anti-abortion rally at a local university. I can vividly remember feeling in-over-my-head as we were asked to debate other students on our anti-abortion position.
It’s important to mention that the overwhelming majority of Focus on the Family interns were white, cisgender, and had other privileges in their upbringing such as access to healthcare, education, food, and housing. I, personally, had never experienced poverty. I was zoned for great schools and I never missed a meal or a doctors appointment.
In addition, I came from a loving home, with parents who deeply cared for me and invested in my wellbeing. At that point in my life, I had had limited exposure to anyone who experienced a different reality.
At the rally, I remember speaking to one college student who was about the same age I was. She was firmly pro-choice and she could explain why. I remember that she said to me, “How could you possibly know what is best for another person?”
I didn’t have an answer.
That question, and others like it, helped me begin to see that the world was much bigger and more complex than my limited experience of it.
She was right — how could I possibly know what is best for another person? How could I project my experiences, my upbringing, my social power and use it to assume what is best for someone else?
For me, access to reproductive healthcare isn’t about whether or not a person believes abortion is morally right or wrong. It’s about the fact that I couldn’t possibly know what is best for another person.
As hard as it is to witness our country take this giant step backward, I’m going to try to remember this — my views on reproductive rights were changed by the thoughtful question of one young woman. A woman I never saw again and who has no clue she impacted me in this way.
Today, this is a helpful reminder that there is power in every voice. That there is purpose in advocacy. That there is a reason to continue the work.
I’m so happy to be back to writing Mondays with Motivo – I missed it. I’m incredibly grateful to Sarah and Dr. Carla for filling in for me here and writing such thought-provoking and insightful pieces. I hope you enjoyed them as much as I did.
As always, my inbox is open if you have any thoughts or reflections you’d like to share. I’d love to hear from you.
We’ll be with you every step of the way.