Document Type


Publication Date

Summer 2017


Florida State University Law Review





First Page


Last Page



Women’s abortion decision-making and parental decision-making in child rearing are constructed as polarized methods of decision-making. Women’s abortion decision-making is understood as myopic and individualistic. Parental decision-making is understood as sacrificial and selfless. This polarization leaves reproductive decision-making isolated, marginalized, and vulnerable while parental decision-making is essentialized, protected, and revered. Both framings are inaccurate and problematic. A unified family decision-making framework that aligns abortion decision-making and parental decision-making reveals that both forms of decision-making are more multi-dimensional, relational, and family-centered than currently understood. This article exposes the ground to be gained by crossing longstanding boundaries in family law and reproductive rights to more accurately and inclusively frame decision-making. This is a critical step to pull abortion decision-making from its marginalized periphery and reposition it as complex, imperfect, family-focused, and central to family law.



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