The XX Factor

Turned Off by Miscarriage Tweet

I agree that some of the outrage towards People’s Trunk’s tweeted miscarriage is because she wasn’t more upset about losing a baby. But I think some of the upset is the medium, not the message: I am among those who finds Twitter to be an unfortunate place for the dissemination of this sort of information. I applaud Trunk’s openness about her miscarriage, and think women should be encouraged to talk about their experiences. However, 140 characters does not leave a person much room to discuss the nuances of their situations.

After her notorious Tweet, Penelope Trunk wrote an eloquent blog post about her miscarriage and how miscarriages affect working women. However, in her post, she also writes, “To all of you who said a miscarriage is gross: Are you unaware that the same blood you expel from a miscarriage is what you expel during menstruation? Are you aware that many people are having sex during menstruation and getting it on the sheets? Are you aware that many women actually like period sex?” I don’t find miscarriage gross or talking about it to be wrong, but I don’t want to read Tweets about period sex either. Or a male equivalent: I have no desire to see a Tweet about your vasectomy or your swamp butt. I find Trunk making her Tweet into a moment about reproductive freedom is somewhat disengenuous. Am I trying to silence Trunk? No way. Am I saying her experience is wrong or invalid? Not remotely. Am I turned off by her tweet and some of the more extreme aspects of our too-much-information culture? Absolutely.