This is a guest blog by a junior high school student who contacted us to ask how she could help us to end FGM.
by Lauren Snow
Female Genital Mutilation. It’s not a term that is thrown around much in everyday conversation. Less than a month ago I hardly knew what it was, now I can’t keep it out of my mind. The very concept terrifies me, this is going on as we speak to some poor, innocent girl who has done nothing to deserve it.
I live in America where FGM is not as prevalent but still, I cannot help but think: That could be me. If I was born in different circumstances, maybe I would be a victim of FGM.
My body is being viewed as something that I do not have a right to; Parts of my body can be removed to “keep me pure.” As a feminist this idea appals me but I don’t think I need to convince you that FGM is wrong.
While I myself am not a victim of FGM, many young girls are, and I am fighting for them. They have suffered trauma and pain along with numerous side effects which they will have to likely deal with for the rest of their lives.
I am fighting for women all over to feel safe in their bodies, to have freedom over their bodies. As a female this issue directly affects me. There are people in the world who still believe that I do not deserve this freedom of choice over my body. They feel that they can damage me without my permission.
All of this simply because I am a woman.
I fight against FGM because I don’t want our world to be one where young girls are in pain. I don’t want them to deal with fear and confusion for the rest of their lives. I want women to be empowered. I want women to make their own decisions about their bodies.
No child can fully understand the choice of FGM when it is being made. The thing is I am only 16 years old. I cannot help heal a damaged child, or intervene in a home where FGM is being planned. Sometimes that makes me feel helpless.
There is such horrific abuse occurring in parts of the world which I have never even seen and I feel as if there is nothing I can do.
But I will continue to show support for No FGM Australia. I will do everything I can, as small as it is to show that I care about ending FGM.
And one day, when I am older I will be able to do more. But hopefully, by then I won’t have to because all you people out there, who can do something today, will.
I fight FGM for young girls who have endless potential the same way I do, but are being brought down by this horrible abuse.
I fight so that the girls won’t feel hurt and scared.
I fight FGM to prevent the horrible diseases that it can bring along.
I fight it because it is child abuse and it is wrong.
I hope that you will too.