A member of Speaking of I.M.E.L.D.A explains in her own words what motivated her to join the direct-action prochoice performance collective:
What spurred me to join Speaking of I.M.E.L.D.A came from the shock of hearing a close friend’s story. Like me, my friend was born in the UK to an Irish family. We are both in our 20s, living life and enjoying ourselves. However now lives in Ireland whereas I have spent my life here.
After falling pregnant by accident whilst using contraception, my friend wanted to travel to the UK to have an abortion. However, she could not get the time off of work. This led her to buying tablets from the internet to terminate the pregnancy herself. Thankfully she did not fall ill but she did keep this ordeal a secret from her family and friends, telling us only months later. I can only imagine how scared she must have been during this process. The risk she took was high, living in a rural community miles away from a hospital. It could have ended badly.
Hearing her story made me realise that she had been forced to make a decision alone that I would never have to make. Why should my reproductive rights be any different to a woman in another country? Every woman should be able to make such a life changing decision for herself.