Anise Simon’s Abortion Story

My abortion story is a little different every time I tell it because it’s not just a story about my abortion.

It’s a story about escaping a physically and financially abusive relationship and finding my inner strength.

It’s a story about staying with someone who disrespected me because women in my community counseled me to stay with an educated, Black man and because I genuinely believed that “everyone gets shaken a little bit.”

I’ve had to come to terms with what it means to be a visible, Black feminist in my community who privately struggled with being afraid in her own home. I’ve always kept my abortion story to myself because I felt like it was my responsibility to protect Black men.

But these days, I’m just trying to protect myself. Every time I reach a personal milestone—visiting a new country, buying a laptop, changing jobs, learning something new—I feel like I owe so much gratitude to the fact that I am strong and fierce and not tied to this man for 18 years. I think that’s an abortion story worth telling.