It all started when...
I (the founder) found myself going through my first abortion (yes, first) alone. I had already gone in for the first half of the medical abortion and was pursuing the second (the insertion of vaginal misoprostol tablets every X hours, I don't remember) at home. I called a friend to keep me company to distract me from the pain as well as the ruminations about my decision to terminate my pregnancy.
She patiently listened as I took her through my day. By the end of our rather one-sided conversation, she expressed gratitude to me for speaking so candidly about my experience. This spurred a discussion about the "whys" of abortion silence: the stigma, the shame, the moral, the political, the oppressive, etc.
I have to credit her for planting the seed of SIHaA in my mind.
Some time later, I had my second abortion. I felt foolish and irresponsible for finding myself in the same situation. I felt grateful for the privilege to be able to exercise my bodily autonomy, yet ashamed. This lead me to not speak openly if at all about my abortion, which for a person whose healing relies heavily on communication, was a problem. I stewed in resentment for a society that would make me feel so shitty about myself for making this decision. I didn't know what to do with myself.
Eventually, I decided to take pen to paper and try to write my story. I think I tried at least five times, each time coming at it from different angles, until I realised that I wasn't writing for myself. Rather, I was writing against an unfair feeling. I wasn't writing what I experienced. I was writing how angry I was with the shame.
Motivated by an overwhelming sense of injustice, SIHaA started coming together. It still is, little-by-little. Ending abortion stigma and the fight for reproductive justice is beyond me and beyond this platform, but the changes we want to see in the world start with us.
Thank you, for visiting the site and demonstrating interest in ending abortion stigma. We have a ways to go - it all starts with us!