To create a social climate in which each person’s unique experience with abortion is supported, respected, and free from stigma, Exhale engages in three primary strategies:
For more than a decade, Exhale has listened to and supported thousands of women and men who have reached out to share their stories privately. Exhale offers a free, confidential, national talkline for women who have had abortions, and for their partners, family, friends, and allies. We opened a private community online in 2009 in response to women callers from across the nation who wanted to talk with each other in groups. We continue to train volunteers to become excellent listeners through our Counselor Program. We also share what we’ve learned in more than 10 years of listening to women and their loved ones about personal abortion experiences, to offer information and recommendations for service providers who would like to improve their after-abortion support.
As a community-led organization, Exhale has leaders at every level. We share our successes and failures so that we can learn together; we encourage innovation; and we continually request input from our community. In response to the needs of women and men who have shared, or are considering sharing, their personal abortion stories publicly, our new ethical storysharing initiative is designed to give women and men the tools, information, and resources they need to share their own stories, in their own words, and be heard with dignity and respect.
We are working to popularize our pro-voice approach, so that more people, service providers, and leaders make personal and institutional decisions that prioritize the voices, experiences and leadership of people who have had abortions. We believe that by listening openly to lived experiences of abortion, we will gain new insight, and learn and grow together.
We hope you’ll join us!
It is up to each one of us to spread pro-voice values and develop peaceful leadership practices. Every time you listen without judgment to a loved one who has had a personal experience with abortion, and each time you talk to a friend or loved one about your values of support and respect, you actively shift the culture around abortion. Throughout this website, we provide tools to improve your listening skills, and resources to help you make an impact as a pro-voice peacemaker. We’re learning together, so please let us know what else you’re looking for and tell us what tools you need to be a pro-voice peacemaker.