Slog: News & Arts

RSS icon Comments on Savage Love Letter of the Day


Very good, Dan.

Posted by Gloria | September 16, 2008 9:10 AM

I am sure that there are some people out there who do indeed regret having children- but who the hell is going to admit this, at least to some holier-than-thou Republican who had an abortion and now wants to restrict others from the same choice she made.

Wasn't there a recent study about how childless couples are happier than those with kids?

The idea that having kids is the end-all-be-all to existence was created and is sustained by all those people who 'oops!' had kids and now need a pat on the back for exchanging their dreams for their kids. That is not wrong- if you have children you must start living for them. But not having kids is my choice.

Hell I am a 30 year old female with no children- some one needs to give me a pat on the back- because it is a lot harder to NOT have children.

Hooray, you are knocked up! That takes a lot of effort.

Posted by Shilo Urban | September 16, 2008 9:16 AM

You also used your column to support the war. That seemed to work out well for you. Save your politics for Bill Maher. No One reads your sex column for political insight.

Posted by remember? | September 16, 2008 9:17 AM

Jesus Christ!

Like a woman could ever be honest enough with others to admit that she regrets having children. If we only lived in such a world...

Yes, this woman may have not ever met any, but they sure as hell exist out there!

Posted by Fillip | September 16, 2008 9:18 AM

Hey, I think it's great when you occasionally inject some politics into Savage Love. What RWRSL fails to recognize is that in the GOP's ideal America there would be no pegging, donkey punching, etc. Just boring ol' hetero babymaking, which wouldn't leave you with much fodder for your column.

Posted by Hernandez | September 16, 2008 9:20 AM

The reason why so many people are getting so turned off by today’s newspapers and press is because of such bias. We read columns such as yours for entertainment not for you political opinions.

I have to disagree. People are turned off by the newspapers not having opinions -- or pretending to not have opinions as the case may be. I'd much rather read commentary I disagree with than read something watered down and almost indecipherable because the author is too afraid to say what is obvious. This is one of the reasons why I believe blogs are so popular.

Posted by D. | September 16, 2008 9:20 AM

Abortion is god's way of keeping unwanted children from born to awful parents. Why don't christians trust god?

Posted by monkey | September 16, 2008 9:20 AM

Mr. Savage is helping far more people by blasting the GOP than he would by publishing yet another letter requiring no more of an answer than DTMA.

More "entertainment" blogs should be willing to risk their traffic in an effort to you know... save this country.

Posted by dirge | September 16, 2008 9:34 AM

Well, if you Democrats are so open about everything, why were you hiding in that Greyhound station when Senator what's his name reached up around the stall because he ran out of toilet paper?

Posted by Senator Savage | September 16, 2008 9:37 AM

Completely agree about the whole "I've never met anyone who regretted having children" thing. Who the hell is ever going to admit that to another person?

I'm sure there are many women who regret having abortions and many who are happy with their decision, just as I'm sure there are many women who are happy with their decision to have a baby and at least some who are not.

Just because this one person regrets the otucome of her decision, she wants to take away the right of others to make their own choice? Let's apply that logic to other life decisions, shall we? For example, I regret having majored in Chemistry in college. Therefore, I believe that no one should be allowed to major in Chemistry.

This woman sounds like an enormous douchenozzle.

Posted by Julie in Chicago | September 16, 2008 9:40 AM

Excellent replies.

Posted by Nick | September 16, 2008 9:40 AM

We read columns such as yours for entertainment not for you political opinions

We? Who the fuck is we? I totally read SL for Dan's political rants. That is entertainment.

Posted by Mike in MO | September 16, 2008 9:41 AM

Please stop misusing the word "that." You use "that" twice in this post where you mean "who."

Not to be picky, but I see most errors in grammar, spelling, and usage in Dan's posts. Do you need a proofreader, honey?

Posted by Ella | September 16, 2008 9:42 AM

First of all, it's your column, write whatever the hell you want. Even when I disagree with you, I enjoy reading you, and I enjoy your writing style. And I like reading your take on the political race. There aren't many forums that aren't talking politics these days, so we shouldn't be surprised when it hits your column.

Second, I agree, it's unfortunate that she regrets her CHOICE, but it was her CHOICE. She didn't have to choose abortion. There is this idea floating around that people who are pro choice are pro abortion. I could never have an abortion myself, but I will support all the right of all other women to make that choice, and if it is what they choose, they have a right to do it without putting themselves at risk.

Posted by Charm | September 16, 2008 9:43 AM

That second response was surprisingly tactful. I'm confused.

Posted by meh | September 16, 2008 9:43 AM

@2: I'd rather give you a swift kick in the ass.

Posted by mint chocolate chip | September 16, 2008 9:44 AM

Let's face it, people like RWRSL simply do not wish to be confronted by ideas that challenge their limited notions of How Things Should Be. If all she desires is to be "entertained" by the depictions of kink in your columns (and perhaps "titillated" would be a more appropriate description for her attraction), then frankly, having to read the occasional rant from a liberal gay man who has a platform to say a few things not sex-related is just part of the admission price she has to pay to read about pegging, donkey punching, et al.

And maybe you should mention to her that what you write isn't primarily meant as a source for her ENTERTAINMENT, but rather to provide accurate, up-to-date INFORMATION to the confused, the ignorant, and yes, even the hopelessly clueless, albeit wrapped in an entertaining package for the rest of us.

Posted by COMTE | September 16, 2008 9:47 AM

Don't forget the women who don't feel they can say they were glad they had an abortion. I'm betting a lot of them know they'd be stigmatized, shunned, or even abused if they said they are now happier for making a very difficult decision.

Posted by Gloria | September 16, 2008 9:50 AM

Dan, this exact kind of thing is what makes me love you so much. You rant it, we'll read it.

Just because i have the ablilty to breed doesn't mean i should have to.

Posted by Dree | September 16, 2008 9:52 AM

Dan, I don't have a problem with your politics being a major component of Savage Love, but the first email is right about one letter not being enough. Last week's Savage Love had a letter that you had already posted to Slog, and a rant you had already posted to Slog. I know only a very small subset of Savage Love readers also read Slog, but have a bit of consideration for us anyway, would you?

Posted by Chris in Tampa | September 16, 2008 9:57 AM

Republicans are so condescending and elitist. I guess you have to be a member of some special class, and not a mere artist or entertainer, before you're allowed to talk about politics.

Posted by elenchos | September 16, 2008 10:02 AM

You are very polite, Dan! My response would have been "go fuck yourself, Republican".

Posted by Fnarf | September 16, 2008 10:02 AM

10 - thank you for douchenozzle

16 - I'd rather give you an unwanted child

Posted by uncle baggy | September 16, 2008 10:03 AM

I've know several women who've had abortions. I dont' know that any of them regret it. They regret getting in that position, but the abortion itself didn't particularly bother them.

I also knew a few girls in high school who's parents made them get an abortion - as well as a girl who really wanted to "lose" her baby, so she kept doing all sorts of vigorous physical things, as well as a lot of booze and drugs. I don't recall what happened to her.

And not long ago a very good friend of mine - a doting father, who loves his two kids - told me that he kind of wishes he and his wife hadn't had the kids. A mother I know has expressed the same sentiment.

Whatever major choice you make in life can lead to regret.

Posted by Catalina Vel-DuRay | September 16, 2008 10:12 AM

Not to fawn, but when I was a young kid in small-town Canada I was always thrilled when Dan's columns included some politics. It was exhilarating to hear someone outside of the mainstream voice their opinions and land a few good punches.
(Canadians suffer at the hands of fundies too, albeit to a lesser extent. This recent article in the walrus lays it out pretty well )

Posted by ams | September 16, 2008 10:15 AM

I regret my abortion at age 19. I think the letter writer described it perfectly: I reacted, rather than thinking whether it was the right choice or not. Now that I have kids, I think about it often. However, I am working on this in therapy.

I only wish I had been more aware of the other possibilities. I'm not sure why I didn't even consider adoption. I think I was terrified of the pregnancy itself. Now that I know it is no big deal (really, it isn't!) I can see making the choice for adoption.

That said, I am definitely still pro-choice. I am glad that I had the choice to make, and that I still do.

@2: It is harder NOT to have kids?! That's the funniest thing I have heard all day.

Posted by A mother | September 16, 2008 10:16 AM

I don't see the problem when a sex columnist writes about political issues that directly relate to people's private sexual behavior. Didn't Palin support a Wasilla ban on sex shops in the city limits? So wondering what this person's policy positions would be if she attains power at the Federal level is perfectly reasonable for somebody who writes about sex.

That first writer sounds typical of a whole bunch of Republicans who think these issues don't apply to them because they're special. They don't want to admit to themselves how much control over their own lives they're willingly handing over to fundamentalist crusaders in their own party. They think they can take the upper-class tax cut plank of the GOP and leave the Puritanical Morality Police plank for the poor people it's there to placate.

It doesn't work that way.

Posted by flamingbanjo | September 16, 2008 10:21 AM

So the writer doesn't know of any parents who regret having children? How about the parents who emotionally and physically torture and occasionally kill their children? Or perhaps the ones who merely neglect them leaving them to grow up virtually feral?

But abortion? Heavens no! Every fertilized egg must be allowed to come to fruition regardless of the "parents'" ability or desire to nurture a child. We must deny personal decision-making to ALL because some regret the choices they've made.

Great reply Dan.

Posted by Spokalou | September 16, 2008 10:39 AM

If you are going to keep on crucifying Dan for supporting the Iraq war (a subject which he has addressed openly and honestly on more than one occasion) could you please post pictures somewhere?

The idea of Dan Savage hanging naked on a cross has homoerotic implications that boggle the mind.

Posted by Eddy968 | September 16, 2008 10:43 AM


Exactly. Dan's Every Child Needs a Mother and a Father demonstrates pretty clearly how many parents don't want to be parents. Or are so sadistic they had kids just for the opportunity to abuse them.

Posted by keshmeshi | September 16, 2008 10:48 AM

having had an abortion myself i can empathize with the feelings of regret. i do not, however, actually feel regret. the decision i made was most certainly the correct one for my situation. any sense of remorse i feel, i have no come to understand as my underlying biological desire to procreate as well as some additional stigma associated with the "termination". my body wants to reproduce even if it is not sane or logical. sex is enjoyable so that we have more of it. the attachment of a mother to her child, born or unborn, is, in my eyes, a survival mechanism of our species. one of my friends and i were having a discussion regarding this very subject. she had chosen to keep her child (who is now 2 years old) and i had not. she told me that the decision not to terminate was the selfish one, as it satisfied her innate desire for motherhood despite her ability to provide. i will reiterate that, as women, we are made for childbirth. that does NOT necessarily MEAN WE SHOULD bear children and the ability to use our rational mind to make our choices based on a long term outcome is a characteristic that makes us unique as a species.

Posted by whomsRU | September 16, 2008 10:49 AM

I'm glad you mentioned financial duress as a reason women might choose to get an abortion. Is the GOP ready to provide the kind of pre- and post-natal care that a pregnant woman needs to produce and raise a healthy baby? No? No affordable healthcare? Then women will keep having abortions for no other reason than that they can't afford to have a baby - and I bet many women who are put in that situation do regret that "CHOICE." Not saying that affordable healthcare would make abortions a thing of the past or anything, just saying it's not as simple as "just don't have an abortion" like the GOP seems to think.

Posted by hillside_hoyden | September 16, 2008 10:49 AM

Just because one Republican slut made a mistake, why should everyone else pay?

Posted by Sirkowski | September 16, 2008 10:51 AM

Brilliant point, @32

Is the GOP ready to provide the kind of pre- and post-natal care that a pregnant woman needs to produce and raise a healthy baby? No? No affordable healthcare? Then women will keep having abortions for no other reason than that they can't afford to have a baby

Posted by Non | September 16, 2008 10:55 AM

#31, what a great, rational comment.

Posted by LukeB | September 16, 2008 11:06 AM

@32 Well put.

Unfortunately, Republican, right-wing, capital-letter Christians CAN'T approve of paying for pre and/or post natal care; that wouldn't be conservative.

Posted by Eddy968 | September 16, 2008 11:09 AM

Where the hell are some of you people from? In my hometown hellhole, nearly all of my friends were told by their parents that they regretted having them, as was also true of mine. And my friends' parents weren't shy about saying it in earshot of me more than once, or to their adult friends. The single biggest curse those parents -- and mine -- would spit out at their kids was that they hoped they would have kids when they grew up, so they would have their lives ruined by being a parent. It wasn't until I was out of there that I learned it was considered uncommon to admit to regretting having children.

And guess what? We all grew up to be screwed up. And most everybody I knew then went on to not have kids and the few that did are horrible parents and/or their lives were ruined by being parents.

Furthermore, I regret having had a Venti Pumpkin Spice Frap this morning, so close all the Starbucks. I mean how stupid can you get? This woman may regret the abortion she had as a teenager, but if this is how smart she is as an adult, then she absolutely made the right choice. The last thing any kid needs is a screwed-up stupid parent -- believe me.

Posted by whatevernevermind | September 16, 2008 11:23 AM

@37: Read the letter again. She's a parent now.

Posted by Gloria | September 16, 2008 11:30 AM

@31 and 32: Exactly.

I had an abortion. It was the hardest, most selfLESS thing that I've ever done. I didn't mean to get pregnant-- I was on the pill but it failed. (I've got an IUD now: Fuck you, Ortho Tri.)

I never *wanted* children, but as soon as I was pregnant, instinct and emotion took over and I WANTED that baby. But I knew, in my brain and in my heart, that I couldn't care for a child. I didn't have the resources. I wasn't in the right place in my life. I feared that if I had the child, I would later regret it, resent the child-- no child deserves that.

I knew that having the child would be the selfish decision, so I terminated the pregnancy. Has it been easy and wonderful and a celebration of percieved freedom? God no. But I don't regret it, not for an instant.

Part of the reason I chose to terminate the pregnancy was because I didn't have the financial security and stability that a child deserves-- important things like guaranteed health insurance, a living wage, etc...

In that way, I blame my choice ON the Republicans-- on every elected official that has fought increases in the minimum wage, has fought universal health care, has fought the funding of social and human services. If the Right is so fucking concerned about their anti-choice agenda, maybe the rest of their policies should actually be PRO-LIFE.

Posted by Samantha | September 16, 2008 11:39 AM

@23: Douchenozzle is a Bellevue Ave word.
@31: Excellent comment, and point.

Posted by Mikki | September 16, 2008 11:48 AM

@38 Oh, I didn't miss that part. That was the target of my last sentence.

To this day, my mother will tell you with a straight face that she literally never made a single mistake in raising her children. I'm sure that our little anti-choicer is convinced she loves her children and is only doing good by them, too. It doesn't mean she's right about that or that she was wrong about having an abortion.

Posted by whatevernevermind | September 16, 2008 11:56 AM

I wouldn't find Dan half so compelling if he weren't willing to speak up politically. His commentary linking the personal to the political makes his column all the more relevant--it's why I continue to read and it's why, I think, people who might otherwise get jaded to one more kink discussion (as lively and fun as it can be--andit is) keep listening to him year after year. He makes it all important.

Don't stop, Dan.

Posted by alion | September 16, 2008 12:09 PM

Great response. You honor her pain, and yet share another point of view. Sometimes in situations like this, I've observed, what people are really searching for is someone to honor their pain and experience - to say wow - you have felt this way and struggled. I'm genuniely sorry you've been through this and are at disease with your decision. Sometimes people are open to hearing another point of view once their hurt has been acknowledged and it can even bring healing and an entre point for them to view their situation in a broader landscape. Well done.

Posted by dawicksta | September 16, 2008 12:12 PM

#6 - right on.
#28 - right on.

I'm so sick of hearing the "regret" argument made over and over that every time I hear it I'm vowing to rebut it.

Had an abortion at 17, do not regret it one single bit and never have. 24 years later am a successful career woman AND damn good mother.

Dan, as long as the GOP insists on looking in our bedrooms (not that sex should be limited to one room...) I hope you insist on calling out their hypocrisy.

Posted by Donna | September 16, 2008 12:20 PM

Keep up your political commentaries Dan, maybe you can get some of those GOP'ers to realize that the McCain/Palin ticket is more of the same old shit.

As a woman who had ALL the options available during an unplanned pregnancy, I'm happy with the choice I made and HAPPIER that I had several options to choose from.

Posted by SomeWomanSomewhere | September 16, 2008 12:34 PM

I had an abortion and have NO regrets whatsoever - I explain in Mudede's later post (The Last Victim).
My son would not be here if I didn't have an abortion.

Posted by Madashell | September 16, 2008 12:44 PM

@41: Ah, sorry.

Posted by Gloria | September 16, 2008 1:03 PM

I'm fan of Mr. Savage BECAUSE of his political rants.

I admire people in general who speak their opinion as opposed to those who keep quiet for fear of what others will think or say.

Posted by Wes | September 16, 2008 1:28 PM

I'd like to re-iterate that I'm speaking of DAN Savage as opposed to arrogant asshole MICHAEL Savage.


Posted by Wes | September 16, 2008 1:33 PM

My mom had an illegal abortion a few years before she had me, and she has no regrets even though it was painful and scary. She had broken up with her boyfriend at the time and had sex with him "just once more" out of pity. She went to another state, had an abortion by a doctor in a hotel room, and the "dad" married someone else literally two days later. Then my mom met and married my dad, they had me, and we went to lots of pro-choice rallies when I was little. No regrets whatsoever, in fact, quite the opposite.

There WILL be abortions available if it gets made illegal again. There was a huge underground network in 1969 (my mom actually found out about the doctor through a pro-choice minister). But it was really expensive, and she was lucky that her boyfriend had the money and she could convince him. As with so many other things, the poor women are the ones who are going to be screwed.

Posted by threnody | September 16, 2008 1:45 PM

Here's one you haven't heard. The only reason I was born is because my mother had an abortion. In the '50s, in a Roman Catholic hospital - the kind of "Health of the Mother' thing that so many so-called pro-lifers poo-poo as rarely happening.

My mother had a encoptic pregnancy [gee, I hope I spelled that right]. That means the fetus forms outside of the womb, and usually kills the mother long before it is viable. There was a Catholic priest on hand to bless the remains [no shit] and my mother applied to the local bishop for permission first - her faith was very important to her. It was granted in a rather routine manner ["Of course you are having an abortion, here's father Michael to answer any questions and to be with you during the procedure."]

She had 3 children before the terminated pregnancy and me after - and was never haunted by this decision. It was just something that happened, it wasn't a secret and it wasn't shameful.

So, if my Mom hadn't had an abortion - a legal one, long before Roe v. Wade - I never would have been born. But so many pro-lifers these days want no abortion under any condition - health of the mother? Incest? Rape? Every sperm is sacred, at least to them.

But, boy am I glad that Mom was able to get that abortion!

Posted by Schweighsr | September 16, 2008 2:50 PM

Follow a social worker around for a day. You'll see plenty of mothers who regret having their children.
Guess who pays the price for that?

Posted by STLJoy | September 16, 2008 4:00 PM

sex can be very political albeit not global but wait...maybe it can if your veep choice is about to be a grandmother at 44 because her chat or lack thereof about sex with daughter did not work. dan savage - thank you and thanks to all who have the courage to take control over their bodies! aren't we all regretting the last 8 years? vote for Obama.

Posted by details unncessary | September 16, 2008 4:07 PM

Can we all just start calling the pro-life people what they really are - - - pro-birth! Great point #51.

Posted by check please | September 16, 2008 4:10 PM

Comments Closed

Comments are closed on this post.