How Busy Philipps Turned ‘You Know Me’ Into #YouKnowMe


On Tuesday, after the Alabama Senate voted to move a invoice that will ban nearly all abortions within the state, the actress Busy Philipps felt compelled to take motion. “Women deserve compassion and understanding in their personal health choices,” Ms. Philipps, 39, mentioned on Wednesday. “This is something a lot of people experience and go through in their lives, and it’s a health care decision like many health care decisions.”

Just per week earlier she had opened up about her personal abortion, at age 15, on her late-night present, “Busy Tonight,” in a plea to guard girls’s reproductive rights. Ms. Philipps, who is thought for her roles on the TV exhibits “Dawson’s Creek” and “Freaks and Geeks,” wrote in regards to the abortion in her memoir, “This Will Only Hurt a Little.”

“The statistic is one in four women will have an abortion before age 45,” she mentioned final Tuesday on the present, referring to a examine that was revealed within the American Journal of Public Health. “That statistic sometimes surprises people, and maybe you’re sitting there thinking, ‘I don’t know a woman who would have an abortion.’ Well, you know me.”

Now, 1000’s of girls have shared their very own abortion tales on-line, many utilizing the hashtag #YouKnowMe. In a telephone interview, Ms. Philipps mentioned her motivations for talking out, the response to her story and what comes subsequent.

What led you to speak about abortion in your present?

Part of what I believe was so profitable in getting individuals motivated and males on board with the #MeToo motion was listening to from girls about their private tales. Abortion has been, traditionally talking, a really taboo topic that girls have a tough time speaking about publicly, as a result of it’s such a private determination.

The anti-abortion individuals on this nation are so vocal, and for all of these causes I believe girls have remained silent. And I felt like, nicely, possibly there’s truly worth in sharing.

We have to be as loud as they’re, however with the reality. That’s the one factor now we have. For me it consists of individuals standing up and saying, “I am that one in four.” It doesn’t matter why, when, or how outdated you have been.

“You know me, you like me, and I went through this.” I believe there’s one thing tremendous empowering about with the ability to shift the narrative and with the ability to have a ton of individuals say, “I’ve also gone through this thing.”

Before I spoke by myself present, I had learn a narrative about an 11-year-old rape sufferer in Ohio who was going to be pressured to hold a being pregnant. I’ve a daughter who is similar age. I grew to become bodily in poor health fascinated with the horror of that for that youngster. For these males in cost to resolve that that assortment of cells has extra worth than that youngster defies all logic.

How did the remark you made in your present result in your tweet on Tuesday calling for ladies to share their tales with the hashtag #YouKnowMe?

I don’t perceive hashtags that a lot. I by no means hashtag.

Tina Fey, who doesn’t have her personal social media accounts and who’s my government producer, reached out to me. She mentioned, “I think you hit on something, which is ‘you know me.’ It makes it very personal. I think you should think about starting that hashtag.”

It was the day after I had carried out the present. I felt overwhelmed already by the responses to my present. I had to consider it.

Then, final night time, I went to dinner with my girlfriends, and we have been on our telephones studying in regards to the Alabama legislation. I advised them in regards to the hashtag they usually mentioned, “Just do it right now. This is the right time to do it.”

How do you’re feeling about a number of the unfavorable reactions individuals have needed to the feedback you made in your present and the hashtag?

I had a number of the trolls hit me up, and lots of people have been like, “How could you be proud of this thing you have done?” I by no means mentioned I used to be pleased with it. It’s a factor I skilled as a girl that many ladies on this nation and around the globe have skilled. I refuse to dwell in disgrace, and I refuse to carry on to one thing that I’ve no disgrace about.

I don’t know one lady who’s had an abortion who has been like, “I can’t wait, I’m so excited about this.”

I can’t management that another person feels that means about this. I imagine they’re unsuitable and, to be sincere with you, it actually has no impact on me in any respect. Not even for a second. In phrases of followers on Instagram, if that’s one thing you imagine, and also you imagine a girl shouldn’t resolve together with her physician and herself what’s proper for her personal physique, you possibly can go forward and unfollow me. I don’t want you.

How can males be allies?

Men could be louder. I believe they are often participatory and stand shoulder-to-shoulder with girls, opposing these payments.

My husband and I talked about it earlier than I talked about it on my present. We talked in regards to the potential repercussions. He and I each determined that something unfavorable about me that might come my means can be utterly minuscule compared to the potential good that it may do for different individuals.

What’s your outlook on the longer term on the subject of reproductive rights?

I do need everybody, myself included, to be hopeful that girls will be capable to have true equality in our society. I’m hopeful of that, for our daughters. I’m hopeful that we gained’t slide backwards, and that what we’re seeing proper now could be the final dying grasp of outdated white males who’re making an attempt to uphold the patriarchy and maintain on to their energy in any means they’ll. I hope this can be a actual turning level, and from right here on out, issues will get higher. It would possibly worsen earlier than will get higher, however it’s fairly dangerous proper now. And I’m talking from a spot with a lot privilege.

This interview has been edited and condensed.



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