Six years: that’s how long I didn’t talk about my abortion. I pretended like I hadn’t even had one. Abortions were something I knew other people had—a right I supported, but I stayed out of the conversation in case someone would find me out.
When I found Exhale, an organization focused on “addressing the emotional health and well-being of women and men after abortion,” I literally exhaled. It was a place where I could relax and own my experience. I could share the complexities without shame and guilt. When the group asked me to write my story for their site, I was nervous—strangers would know my secret. But the response was one of overwhelming support and understanding. Friends from my past came out of the shadows to tell me that they had an abortion too, and that we should keep talking about them, so I did.