If you have taken a moment to explore EKRHP’s Stories section on this site, you have probably noticed that the women and healthcare professionals being interviewed have really put themselves out there. Their whole selves. With all the hard topics that we typically do not get the chance to share with many people if at all.
Women’s health issues have remained in the dark for 100s of years for good reason. It is the private life of people and families. Hard decisions should be made either within oneself or amongst the support of close family and friends. There is also the fear of being judged, or looked down on. However, if you think about some of the hard choices you have had to make, how would they have been easier or more informed if you had been able to talk to someone who had experienced something similar before? What about several people who each made a different choice? Is there ever a time when hearing someone else’s story can make you feel more supported and secure in your own experience?
With the rise of the internet, information is at our fingertips. People use the internet to distribute information in a variety of ways from straight fact to focused agenda and opinion. When searching the internet for information, you have to be wary of what you are reading/seeing and really hold it up against a light of trustworthiness. Where is the information coming from? Is the organization’s site one that seems professional? Do they back up their information with researchable facts and links to other sites for more research?
Another internet phenonmenon is the blog, or the online web journal of individuals all across the world. People who blog share their lives with anyone who has access to the internet. Because of both of these types of websites we not only have access to complete information, but the stories of those who needed and/or used the information before.
EKRHP’s main goal is to share the stories of the women in southeastern Kentucky regarding reproductive health, so that information and real life experiences can help inform the experiences of others for better health. While it is good to maintain our privacy, there is also something very liberating in telling our stories, especially if we know that our story could do tremendous things to help another. If more women told their stories in deliberate and honest ways, would the possibility of feeling empowered and confident come out of learning we are not alone? Would ridicule or quick judgement come as easily for some if what is now in many ways unknown/misunderstood became more accessible and understood?
You can share your story with others by contributing to this project either through scheduling a video interview with one of our correspondents, or sharing a short version of your story on PlaceStories.
In the meantime, check out our Stories section and the postcards on PlaceStories. You may also enjoy reading the blogs of women throughout the world who share important experiences and resources on a variety of reproductive health topics. Here are just a few: