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Women Are Fighting Abortion Laws By Coming Up With Their Own "Termination Tips"

The YouTube tutorials are intended to mock Chile's ban on pregnancy termination. BuzzFeed News spoke with the agency that created the video and the NGO pushing the cause. You can also read this in Spanish.

Posted on May 8, 2015, at 12:56 a.m. ET

In a series of spoof videos currently being shared in Chile, women appear to be advising each other on how to terminate a pregnancy.

View this video on YouTube

The fake tips include throwing yourself into traffic, falling down stairs, and "hitting your stomach against fire hydrants."

youtube / Via

The campaign was created by Chilean NGO MilesChile to demonstrate the negative effect of the country's harsh abortion laws.

View this video on YouTube

Claudia Dides, the director of the NGO, told BuzzFeed News that it is high time for Chile's democratic government to lift the ban on abortion.

En comisiĆ³n de salud sesiĆ³n sobre aborto terapĆ©utico junto a @ClaudiaDides y @MilesChile

In the Health Commission session [at the Chilean Congress, where this issue is being discussed} debating about therapeutical abortion with @ClaudiaDides and @MilesChile.

A law that was passed during the dictatorship more than 30 years ago banning abortion under any circumstances, even when the mother and fetus' lives are in danger, is still enforced.

ā€œThis campaign is provocative,ā€ said Dides, ā€œbut real women are indeed advised to fall from the stairs to self-induce a miscarriage.ā€

@Dani_Cicardini @Prensa_Maya @Prensa_Karol @aromorojo @antonietasaa @pati_morales_e @AleConcejala @mariseka

Claudia Dides (far right) and other women protest in the streets of Chile.

Abortion was first banned in Chile in 1989. Some believe the strict law endangers women, whereas others think it protects life.


In January, President Michelle Bachelet proposed to end a total ban on abortion and allow it in cases of rape or when there is a threat to the mother's or baby's life. The bill is currently being debated in Congress. In 2009, Human Rights Watch estimated 160,000 abortions are performed each year in Chile.

Chile is one of the six countries in the world where abortion is forbidden under any circumstance.

Miles Chile

The other countries are El Salvador, the Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, Malta, and the Vatican.

Dides explained why she believes this situation is so dangerous for women's reproductive health:

"Some women are told to leave the country and have an abortion somewhere else. In Chile, some abortive medicines like Misoprostol are sold in the clandestine market so women do not really know what they are consuming. They are at risk."

BuzzFeed News also talked to Paola Dragnic, who was not allowed to have an abortion, even when she knew that her baby would not survive.

LƔvate la boca antes de hablar de mi, gracias al aborto terapeurico me alvaro y despuƩs pude ser mama @tono0

"Wash your mouth before you talk about me, thanks to therapeutical abortion I could become a mum afterwards @tono0."

She explained the ordeal she went through, via chat on WhatsApp.

Pao: No worries
[What happened to me] is literally called a Partial Moral Pregnancy

BuzzFeed News: I see

Pao: This fertilization has problems, the fetus can't survive, becoming a threat for the mother because it triggers a hormonal mess that is very harmful. This disease intoxicates and might kill the woman.

BuzzFeed News: Oh no, so what happened? After you were diagnosed with this, what happened?

Pao: In most countries, the fetus is removed immediately, ASAP, to avoid harm in the woman.

But, in Chile, since you can't interrupt a pregnancy, women are brought to a critical condition, as a way to protect themselves from the law.

After four and a half months, Paola miscarried. Now she is helping NGO Miles with their communications, and hopes that other women can avoid a similar situation.

No preciosa. Ayudar a las mujeres a no morir y ser mamas como yo @verukasaltX @karenmoure @MMReivindica @SernamChile

No, dear. Helping women not to die and to become mums like I am @verusaltX @karenmoure @MMReivindica @SernamChile

The viral videos are part of a larger conversation about women's rights, and Paola's case is one of many.

@paodragnic nadie piensa en cĆ³mo se siente mujer que sabe que su hijo es inviable, que no vivirĆ”, o que ella arriesga su vida si Ć©l nace.

@paodragnic nobody thinks what it feels like for a woman who knows that her child is unviable, that the unborn won't live, or that she will risk her life if the baby is born.

Me da rabia que ni siquiera en caso de una violaciĆ³n podamos abortar! Demasiado cruel! #CulturaVerdaderaAborto

It pisses me off that we can't even abort in the case of rape! This is too cruel! #TrueCultureAbortion

The videos have been watched close to 600,000 times.

View this video on YouTube

However, the campaign has divided viewers, with commenters criticizing it for making light of abortion.

"@MilesChile: Forzar embarazo x violaciĆ³n es tortura. Apoya la #LEYabortoTERAPƉUTICO. Nikgando, eso es asesinato de un inocente

@MilesChile: Forcing a pregnancy because of rape is torture. Support the #BillTherapeuticalAbortion. Nikgando, that is murdering an innocent.

Some have gone as far as accusing them of promoting "murder."


There is another option and is way less painful, which is using a contraceptive method or asking your boyfriend to use a condom.

According to the video, the mother made it alive, traumatized, but alive.
Unfortunately, her defenseless child, the weakest in our society, are the babies, like her child, who didn't make it. From now on, don't try to say that a MURDER was an ACCIDENT.

All of those who are made believe that abortion (murder) is a right, I am asking them, if this were a Murder, it it were an atrocity towards another human being, why is it not approved and that's it? Why do you have to spend hours on end justifying this? Spending millions in campaigns to legalize something that we shouldn't be even thinking about. The answer is: they know that what they are doing is disgraceful and it can't be forgiven by anyone.


But why the fuck would you kill the baby? Can you explain to me why you have to kill the baby? And don't tell me the mother suffers when the fetus is growing, just explain to me why it is necessary and obligatory to kill the baby and not let this person live, tell me this, please, I don't get it, it pisses me off.

The campaign's hashtag #LEYabortoTERAPƉUTICO is intended to get people talking about the taboo subject of abortion.

Tutorial Aborto #LEYabortoTERAPƉUTICO: a lo que tenemos que llegar porque no hay una ley de Aborto. Impactada.

Tutorial about abortion #BillTherapeuticalAbortion I can't believe we have gone this far because we lack an abortion law. I am shocked.

Yo apoyo la #LEYabortoTERAPƉUTICO como Miles de chilenos. Ā”SĆŗmate tĆŗ tambiĆ©n! LA APOYO COMO UN PUNTO DE INICIO!

I support the #BillTherapeuticalAbortion like thousands of Chilean people. You can join us too! I SUPPORT THE BILL AS A STARTING POINT!

En Chile las mujeres hacen esto para no ser penadas por la ley,150.000 accidentes cada aƱo #LEYabortoTERAPƉUTICO

In Chile, women do this in order not to be punished by the law, 150,000 accidents every year #BillTherapeuticalAbortion

According to Chile's Health Department, According to Chile's Health Department, 150,000 illegal abortions are performed each year. Almost 70% of people from Chile are in favor of abortion, said the NGO Miles.

Many influential people refused to take part in the campaign, said Carlos Puig, director for Latin America of Grey, the agency that produced the videos.

Puig said that the tutorials aim at informing people about abortion in Chile:

"Women are now looking up for information online about how to abort. The number of deaths provoked by this situation are hard to measure, but this issue is really serious. With the video, Miles wanted to report on a reality that needs to be changed."

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