The Abortion Diary: The Story Behind The Stories

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By: Skylar Locke

The Abortion Diary is a podcast that gives women the opportunity to share and narrate their own personal abortion stories in a safe and supportive place where people listen without political judgments and with more empathy. The creator of this project is Dr. Melissa Madera and her inspiration for this podcast began when she shared her personal abortion story after thirteen years. She travels the world capturing untold abortion stories through her podcast and hopes that her podcast helps end the stigma, shame, and isolation behind the experience. The Abortion Diary website consists of a blog, a gallery, an abortion story map that shows where all of the stories have come from, resources, workshops and talks, and stories based on region, illegal, pre-roe, and post-abortion rituals. The overall goal of this project is to “help destigmatize abortion and allow the storytellers to process their experience and control their narrative.” 

Regardless of your political and ethical viewpoint on abortion, women have abortions. It is their personal choice, it is their body, and it is their story to share. Most of the time, they do not have any outlet to help them through this process. This project is a resource for them to express their feelings from their pain, their grief, their anger, their recovery, and everything in between. Oftentimes, people are so absorbed in the act of abortion that they forget it is not always an easy choice for women. A lot of times, it is their only choice. Every women has a different experience and they should not have to feel like their only option is to keep silent. They do not need judgment or hate or shame. When a woman shares her experience on this podcast, she is claiming her story and that is powerful.

This project is slowly humanizing abortions instead of over politicalizing them. I find this to be an extremely amazing and empowering project for women who receive a lot of hate for having abortions. No one likes to feel alone no matter what the situation is. It is important that people know they matter and their stories matter. We have the power to make destigmatize abortions and support women by simply listening to their stories.

The Abortion Diary Podcast.”

4 Replies to “The Abortion Diary: The Story Behind The Stories”

  1. I agree with your view on how that nobody should be singled out when going through this process and someone should always have a guide to follow for what they are doing. I liked when you said “It is their personal choice, it is their body, and it is their story to share” This is true because nobody should have the right to tell someone else that they should get an abortion or not. Making this process easier and less isolating is an important step for human mental health.

  2. Skylar,
    I absolutely love this blog! This is such a great resource for women all over the world to find a safe space to either share their stories or find comfort in reading other peoples stories. This is a great digital humanities project, because it offers so many resources for women to explore other women’s stories and gives them an outlet to voice their opinions without fear of being judged or critiqued. My only concern is that there could be people who are pro-life, that disrupt the flow of this website and make the women who are involved / view it feel uncomfortable. But, I feel like that could happen for almost any digital humanities website we are viewing, so it is nice that women have the courage to create a site like this. I would be curious to know if there is any monetary compensation for the women who work on or add information to this website.

  3. Hi Skylar,

    Thank you for sharing this project with us. All too often, women get told “it’s your body; it’s your choice” but when it comes to abortion it’s like that just goes away. I like that this project provides an outlet for women who have had abortions to share their stories. I feel as if people think that women who get abortions are simply just “killing” an innocent human being. However, it is people who do not understand all that goes into having an abortion. There is no way we can understand unless we experience it ourselves. We do not know the reasons as to why, so why do we judge, talk poorly, and look down upon women who do choose that path. Sometimes, they feel as if it is there only way. Again, we do not know why. I think this project is going to give people a better understand as to what all goes into abortions, factors as to why some women choose abortions, and the after affects. We need to start hearing peoples stories before we start judging them for their decisions.

  4. Hi Skylar,
    I love this blog post and this project! As if abortions aren’t hard enough for the women to go through mentally/physically, it’s also looked down upon by many people! (Especially older men as if they should have a say). Arguments over the topic of abortions can get very heated, so it’s great that women have this project to go to, where it may be the only outlet to sharing their feelings. I like how you said “this project is slowly humanizing abortions instead of over politicalizing them.” I totally agree and think this is great.

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