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Lena Dunham apologises after saying "I wish I had an abortion"

Hanna Fillingham

Lena Dunham has issued a public apology on her Instagram account after saying on her latest Woman of the Hour podcast that she wished she had had an abortion . 

The Girls actress was discussing women's rights to abortion, something the star supports, when she told listeners: "So many people I love - my mother, my best friends - have had to have abortions for all kinds of reasons. I feel so proud of them for their bravery, for their self-knowledge, and it was a really important moment for me then that I had internalised some of what society had thrown at us and I had to put it in the garbage. Now I can say I still haven't had an abortion, but I wish I had." 

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Lena caused controversy when she told listeners of her podcast that she wished she had an abortion

The 30-year-old's comments were met with widespread criticism. One person tweeted: "Abortion is a difficult decision to make. Lena Dunham saying she wishes she had one is demeaning to women who have had to make that choice." Another added: "It is with a heavy heart that I must announce Lena Dunham is at it again." Apologising for her comments, the star wrote: "I truly hope a distasteful joke on my part won't diminish the amazing work of all the women who participated. My words were spoken from a sort of "delusional girl" persona I often inhabit, a girl who careens between wisdom and ignorance (that's what my TV show is too) and it didn't translate. That's my fault. I would never, ever intentionally trivialise the emotional and physical challenges of terminating a pregnancy.

My latest podcast episode was meant to tell a multifaceted story about reproductive choice in America, to explain the many reasons women do or don't choose to have children and what bodily autonomy really means. I'm so proud of the medley of voices in the episode. I truly hope a distasteful joke on my part won't diminish the amazing work of all the women who participated. My words were spoken from a sort of "delusional girl" persona I often inhabit, a girl who careens between wisdom and ignorance (that's what my TV show is too) and it didn't translate. That's my fault. I would never, ever intentionally trivialize the emotional and physical challenges of terminating a pregnancy. My only goal is to increase awareness and decrease stigma. I take reproductive choice in America more seriously than I take literally anything else, and therefore own full responsibility for any words I speak that don't convey this truth clearly. I know plenty of people will never like a thing that leaves my lips, mea culpas or no, but this apology is for the women who have placed their trust in me. You mean everything to me. My life is and always will be devoted to reproductive justice and freedom. You know how in some households you curse and have to put money in a jar? Well in mine, if you mess up your pro-choice messaging you have to give a sizable donation to abortion funds (https://abortionfunds.org/need-abortion) in New York, Texas and Ohio 💰I look forward to fighting with you all for the next four years and beyond.
A photo posted by Lena Dunham (@lenadunham) on

"I know plenty of people will never like a thing that leaves my lips, mea culpas or no, but this apology is for the women who have placed their trust in me. You mean everything to me. My life is and always will be devoted to reproductive justice and freedom." She concluded by revealing that she had given a donation to abortion funds as an apology, writing: "You know how in some households you curse and have to put money in a jar? Well in mine, if you mess up your pro-choice messaging you have to give a sizable donation to abortion funds."