Welcome to "The Gods Are Bored!" Oh drat. We were looking for Halloween decorations, opened the wrong closet, and all the old family skeletons are pouring out on the floor! But you know what they say. Truth is stranger than fiction. So join us this month as we draw true stories from one of the most bizarre family trees in the whole damned forest.
Today's tale is inspired by reading Biting Beaver on the topic of abortion and emergency contraception.
Great-Great Granny's Tale
My grandmother was born in 1888. When she was about 6 years old, she was visiting her grandmother one afternoon. My granny said: "I hate school. I don't want to go." And her grandmother said: "Go home and put away your school frock. You won't be going tomorrow."
That night my grandmother's grandmother hung herself from a low rafter in the barn.
(Hey, you, snickering over there! This is the truth and nothing but the truth!)
This was clearly a case of premeditated suicide, carefully planned and executed. But why? Why would Granny's granny go string herself up in the barn?
Let's whip out the yellowed old family tree papers and look them over. It appears that my great-great grandmother had 15 children between 1860 and 1892. The last three of those children all died within six weeks of each other in an outbreak of scarlet fever.
My grandmother said that Great-Great Granny had just become aware that she was pregnant again, and that's why she killed herself. Suicide as a method of abortion. Well, how many other options did GGG have?
Now, some of you are doing the math and saying Great-Great Granny would have been too old by 1894 to still be having children if her first was born in 1860. But suppose she was 17 or 18 when she married? (I don't have the exact date of her marriage.) I'm a goat judge, not a mathematician, but I put her in her early 50s by 1894. At that age, some women are through with the baby biology and some aren't.
The fact remains that, whether or not she really was pregnant, Great-Great Granny thought she was and decided she didn't want to have another baby.
The moral of this story: Abortion and emergency contraception should be available to every woman, at all times, in all parts of the country. Especially in places where you can also find barns and rope.
I'M NAMED AFTER HER, SORT OF