I saved my own life. Now I’ll have to pay for it.

jessicashortall
May 4, 2017 · 2 min read

It’s not easy to say this, but it gets easier every time I say it: I suffered from crippling postpartum anxiety after my son was born. It was the most terrifying time of my whole life. I honestly wasn’t sure I’d make it through.

I saved my own life by seeking help. My kids have a healthy, happy mother. My husband has a wife. I have my one precious life. I’m here. I made it. Because I spoke up.

Today, the U.S. House will vote on the #AHCA, the Obamacare replacement. This bill would take my postpartum anxiety and make it a pre-existing condition. It would remove any restrictions on insurers on how they cover pre-existing conditions — meaning they can raise my premiums so high I can’t afford them, and my deductibles so high I basically pay everything out of pocket. Because I asked for help when I needed it most, I am now “high-risk” for the rest of my life.

Almost 1 million new mothers suffer from a postpartum mood disorder every year. Suicide is the second most common form of death in the first year postpartum. These people want to punish women for coming forward, for saving their own lives. How is this humane? How is it moral? How is it American?

All this, and the bill has no CBO score — meaning they don’t even know what it will cost — and they are trying to exempt themselves from it. Think on that for a moment.

This switchboard can direct you to your member of Congress. Tell your story. Because it’s the only chance we have to stop this. Because our survival is non-partisan.

202–224–3121

P.S. Before I called, I made a donation to whoever runs against my Rep (who is a “yes” on this bill) in 2018. THEN I called my Rep and told his staffer that I’d donated, and will continue to, and will tell everyone I know to do the same. You can do that at swingleft.org/district-funds.

jessicashortall

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Proud 1st generation American, social entrepreneur, author, mama