Hundreds of women are taking to social media to share stories about their abortions in angry, global backlash to Alabama’s decision to impose a near-total ban the procedure.
As the news broke overnight that Alabama had instated the law, thousands took furiously to Twitter to condemn the decision as an assault on women’s rights.
Political leaders and celebrities were among them, with stars including Busy Phillips and Milla Jovovich sharing details about their own abortions.
Their stories were echoed by thousands of women who tweeted the hashtag ‘#Youknowme’ in an attempt to normalize it and give a sense of just how many women around the world have benefited from it.
Alabama’s new bill makes all abortions illegal unless they are required to save the mother’s life.
The bill was passed 25-6 on Tuesday and all of the votes in favor of it were from men.
Their stores varied from women who said they had been raped to those who would not survive pregnancies themselves and those whose babies would have been born with painful, life-altering disabilities.
‘Learning I was pregnant the same week I decided to leave my abuser could have tied me to him forever,’ said one woman.
‘I was 12. Need I say more?’ another wrote.
‘Had an abortion at 15… my only regret is allowing people to judge me for MY choice,’ said one.
‘#youknowme 1978 and 1988 with two beautiful daughters in between. No regrets,’ said another woman.
Others told stories of other women who lost their lives while having illegal, self-induced abortions.
Politicians including Nancy Pelosi tweeted angrily.
‘Women’s rights are under attack. This relentless and cruel Republican assault on women’s health is designed to force a court battle to destroy Roe v. Wade.
‘Democrats will be ready to defend health care and women’s reproductive freedom,’ she said.
Jamila Jameel, a British TV personality, identified herself as having undergone an abortion as did Milla Jojovich who wrote: ‘I myself went through an emergency abortion 2 years ago. I was 4 1/2 months pregnant and shooting on location in Eastern Europe.
Actress Milla Jojovich revealed how she had to undergo an emergency abortion while four-months pregnant
‘I went into pre term labor and told that I had to be awake for the whole procedure.
‘It was one of the most horrific experiences I have ever gone through. I still have nightmares about it. I was alone and helpless.
‘When I think about the fact that women might have to face abortions in even worse conditions than I did because of new laws, my stomach turns. I spiraled into one of the worst depressions of my life and had to work extremely hard to find my way out.
‘I took time off of my career. I isolated myself for months and had to keep a strong face for my two amazing kids. I started gardening, eating healthier and going to the gym everyday because I didn’t want to jump into taking anti depressants unless I had tried every other alternative.
‘Thank God I was able to find my way out of that personal hell without turning to medication, but the memory of what I went through and what I lost will be with me till the day I die.
These are the 25 white male politicians who passed the bill in Alabama on Tuesday. All are Republican
Margeaux Hartline, dressed as a handmaid, during a rally against HB314, the near-total ban on abortion bill, outside of the Alabama State House in Montgomery, Alabama on Tuesday
‘Abortion is a nightmare at its best. No woman wants to go through that,’ she said.
Busy Phillips prompted many of the tweets.
On Monday night, the actress wrote: ‘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.’
Others used the hashtag #shoutyourabortion which has been condemned in the past by conservatives as a celebration of the procedure.
The vote passed on Tuesday means the only exceptions are to safeguard the health of the mother.
Doctors could now face 10 years in prison for attempting an abortion and 99 years for actually carrying out the procedure.
Alabama’s new bill makes all abortions illegal unless they are required to save the mother’s life. The bill was passed 25-6 on Tuesday and all of the votes in favor of it were from men. Democratic Senator Roger Smitherman is shown speaking in opposition of the bill