Shout Your Abortion
Shout Your Abortion
Following the U.S. Congress’s attempts to defund Planned Parenthood, the hashtag #ShoutYourAbortion became a viral conduit for abortion storytelling, receiving extensive media coverage and positioning real human experiences at the center of America’s abortion debate for the very first time. The online momentum sparked a grassroots movement that has subsequently inspired countless individuals to share their abortion stories in art, media, and community events all over the country, and to begin building platforms for others to do the same.
Shout Your Abortion is a collection of photos, essays, and creative work inspired by the movement of the same name, a template for building new communities of healing, and a call to action. Since SYA’s inception, people all over the country have shared stories and begun organizing in a range of ways: making art, hosting comedy shows, creating abortion-positive clothing, altering billboards, starting conversations that had never happened before. This book documents some of these projects and illuminates the individuals who have breathed life into this movement, illustrating the profound liberatory and political power of defying shame and claiming sole authorship of our experiences. With Roe vs. Wade on the brink of reversal, the act of shouting one’s abortion has become explicitly radical, and Shout Your Abortion is needed more urgently than ever before.
“Shout Your Abortion reflects what makes me most hopeful for this next century, that there’s a whole new generation of young people who refuse to be judged and shamed about who they are, whether it’s their gender identity, their sexual orientation, or what they do with their body.”
—Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America
“By presenting a collection of nuanced narratives, Shout Your Abortion aims to advance a message of broader acceptance: If your abortion experience was hard and sad, that’s okay. If your abortion experience wasn’t hard or sad, that’s also okay. This marks a significant tonal shift in the cultural conversation about abortion.”
—Caitlin Gibson, Washington Post
“Shout Your Abortion has altered the landscape. We all knew that abortion stigma was a central tool in keeping women silent and isolated. Amelia Bonow busted down that door and women poured through it like a dam had burst.”
—Martha Plimpton, actor and cofounder of A is For
“Zora Neale Hurston said that if you are silent about your pain, people will kill you and say that you enjoyed it. Shout Your Abortion is reducing pain by helping all to reject stigmatizing abortion silence. That too is life’s work.”
—Dr. Willie Parker, author of Life’s Work: A Moral Argument for Choice
“It’s been so inspiring for me to see a woman making that stand, building the movement, bringing our stories forward…because really, this is what it’s going to take. It’s going to take all of us. And we will take the political revolution, with #ShoutYourAbortion and everything else we’re trying to do, to the U.S. Congress. All of us together.”
—Pramila Jayapal, U.S. Representative for Washington’s 7th District
“Shout Your Abortion embodies everything that society so desperately craves in this moment: compassion over cruelty, fact over fiction, and storytelling over silence. The shared experience of one in four women powerfully illustrated on these pages is tangible evidence of our collective strength when we join hands and speak our truth together.”
—Ilyse Hogue, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America
About the Contributors:
Following the U.S. Congress’s initial efforts to defund Planned Parenthood, Amelia Bonow’s unapologetic abortion disclosure catalyzed a viral outpouring of abortion stories on social media via the hashtag #ShoutYourAbortion and received extensive media attention including front page coverage from the New York Times and the Los Angeles Times. Bonow has subsequently developed Shout Your Abortion (SYA) into a nationwide movement working to create places for people to discuss their abortions, online, in art and media, and in real life events all over the country. Bonow proudly serves on the Board of Directors of the Abortion Care Network and her writing has appeared in BUST, the Huffington Post, the New York Daily News, Salon, and the Stranger.
Emily Nokes is a musician, writer, graphic designer, illustrator, Libra, candy enthusiast, and the singer/tambourinist in the glittery, feminist punk-pop band, Tacocat. Her hobbies include giving pretty good home bang trims, puffy painting, stoned shopping, and taking photos of her son Tinsel, who is a perfect gray kitten. Her work has appeared in Seattle’s alternative weekly the Stranger, where she previously worked as music editor before accepting her current job as music editor at BUST magazine.
Lindy West is a contributing opinion writer for the New York Times. Her work has also appeared in This American Life, the Guardian, Cosmopolitan, GQ, Vulture, Jezebel, the Stranger, and others. She is the founder of I Believe You, It’s Not Your Fault, an advice blog for teens, cofounder of #ShoutYourAbortion, and author of Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman.