- Busy Philipps encouraged people to share their stories after speaking out about having an abortion at 15 years old.
- The social media movement, known as “#YouKnowMe,” has led thousands of women to reveal their abortion experiences.
- “One in four women have had an abortion. Many people think they don’t know someone who has, but #youknowme. So let’s do this: if you are also the 1 in 4, let’s share it and start to end the shame. Use #youknowme and share your truth,” the actress wrote on Twitter.
- “#YouKnowMe” follows controversial abortion bills recently signed into law in Georgia and Alabama.
- Visit INSIDER’s homepage for more stories.
Busy Philipps called for women to share their abortion stories, and thousands have already joined the #YouKnowMe movement on social media.
“One in four women have had an abortion. Many people think they don’t know someone who has, but #youknowme. So let’s do this: if you are also the 1 in 4, let’s share it and start to end the shame. Use #youknowme and share your truth,” she wrote on Twitter.
1 in 4 women have had an abortion. Many people think they don't know someone who has, but #youknowme. So let's do this: if you are also the 1 in 4, let's share it and start to end the shame. Use #youknowme and share your truth.
— Busy Philipps (@BusyPhilipps) May 15, 2019
Her comment was sparked by a new bill that Georgia’s governor, Brian Kemp, signed into law, which aims to ban abortion when a fetal heartbeat is detected at six weeks. Since then, the Alabama Senate voted to pass a bill that would effectively ban abortions in the state and criminalise doctors who provide them.
Philipps’ message led to a flood of personal stories from women who have also had abortions. Many people explained the reasoning behind their decision, like not feeling ready to become a parent or not being able to financially support a child. Actresses Cynthia Nixon and Alia Shawkat also revealed their stories.
Almost 60 years ago, my mother had an illegal abortion. It was too harrowing for her to discuss, but she made sure I knew it had happened. In 2010, my wife had a legal abortion after we found out her pregnancy was not viable. We cannot and will not go back. #YouKnowMe #YouKnowUs
— Cynthia Nixon (@CynthiaNixon) May 16, 2019
i was 20 and my partner at the time wasn't aloud into the united states because he is Palestinian . I wasn't ready to raise a child alone or to be a mother #YouKnowMe
— Alia Shawkat (@ShawkatAlia) May 16, 2019
Others applauded women for opening up, but didn’t feel comfortable sharing details about their abortions. Many also said that women shouldn’t feel the need to explain, justify, or rehash their experiences.
Love to folks sharing their stories of abortion on #YouKnowMe. Also want to point out the subtext of this…our culture demands people explain to strangers reasons for terminating pregnancies. We're not owed reasons, actually.
— Tọ́pẹ́ (@graceishuman) May 15, 2019
Here’s the thing: #YouKnowMe, but I don’t owe you my story. I don’t owe you my private pain. I don’t owe you a violation of HIPAA for you to see me as a person. You owe me respect and autonomy over my body. https://t.co/Gqn2EF0Vqj
— Sara Locke (@saralockeSTFW) May 16, 2019
#YouKnowMe is brave and amazing, just like #MeToo – but it is another example of women having to re-traumatize themselves or relive their hardest moment to explain that WE MATTER. Abortion is an easy decision for some but incredibly hard for others. We shouldn't have to do this.
— Ipsita Sen (@ipsssen) May 15, 2019
#youknowme I had an abortion in February and I’m not “telling my story,”. I’m still healing. What I will tell you is funding is a burden to those aborting. Please donate to these organizations that support medically safe abortions. No regrets. I will not go back. pic.twitter.com/XE3nS7qlNi
— Sam Sampson (@sammitsammit) May 16, 2019
I just erased the story explaining why because my reason doesn’t matter. It was a personal decision made between my #uterus and me.
— DCBackpacker (@MyBeerAdventure) May 15, 2019
On a recent episode of her talk show called “Busy Tonight,”Philipps spoke out about having an abortion at 15 years old.
“Maybe you’re sitting there thinking, ‘I don’t know a woman who would have an abortion.’ Well, you know me,'” she said.”
The 39-year-old continued: “I’m telling you this because I’m genuinely really scared for women and girls all over this country. And I think that we all need to be talking more and sharing our stories more.”
Speaking to the New York Times, the actress said that Tina Fey reached out to her about taking the reproductive rights conversation to social media.
“She said, ‘I think you hit on something, which is ‘you know me.’ It makes it very personal. I think you should think about starting that hashtag,'” Philipps said.
Philipps’ abortion story gained traction after she spoke about it on “Busy Tonight,” but she first revealed it in her 2018 memoir titled “This Will Only Hurt a Little.”
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