ProWomanProLife welcomes Véronique Bergeron as a permanent blogging contributor.
Véronique Bergeron de Grandpré was born in Ottawa and was raised in the National Capital Region.
She graduated from law school at the University of Ottawa in 1999 with a civil law degree (LL.B.) The focus of her studies was… survival. During the summer following her first year in law school she got pregnant with her first child. And by convocation, four years later, she was pregnant with her third.
Like most young women of her generation, she was not born pro-life. While she always nursed a personal interest in childbirth (she wanted to be a midwife), she also assumed the prevalent choice rhetoric. Then she got pregnant at 21 in law school. “As soon as the little line turned blue, it became clear that what I thought would be a no-brainer was really excruciating,” says Bergeron. “Keeping” the baby was never an issue for her boyfriend, who surprised her with a marriage proposal shortly after (she accepted). Another formative influence was the complete and utter disbelief of her peers that she would do something so stupid as to “keep” the baby and ruin her professional life. “In the end, I pulled the trigger on my professional life by staying home with my children for 10 years,” says Bergeron. “That’s when I realized that women may have been liberated but liberation was achieved by excluding their reproductive abilities. I advocate for a complete liberation of women that includes the fact that they bear and deliver children.”
Bergeron believes that if abortion is indeed an equality issue and if women need to undergo such an invasive and damaging procedure to gain equal footing with men, there’s a word for that: Misogyny.
Bergeron joins ProWomanProLife because she wants to change the system. She is now seeking a Master’s degree in law with a specialization in biomedical ethics from McGill University. Her LL.M. thesis looks into the shared decision-making model in neonatal intensive care and her research interests are neonatal and obstetrical ethics, feminist approaches, informed choice and women’s health policy. She is particularly interested in using feminist scholarship to study forms of sexual exploitation not generally addressed by mainstream feminist approaches such as abortion, sterilization, cesarean sections and cosmetic surgery.
If she had spare time she would hone her musical skills and exercise. “In the meantime, I relax vicariously by driving my five children (aged two to 11) to their various musical and athletic activities,” she says.
PWPL looks forward to an ethicist/mother/lawyer’s contributions to the dialogue. Welcome Véronique!