I was sitting at my dorm room desk at Stanford University. I had already finished my assignments for the day, so I unlocked my phone and opened up Instagram. Immediately I saw a post about Roe v. Wade, but I didn’t click the link—I thought it was just a routine social justice post circulating through my Instagram stories. Then, I saw another person’s post about something to do with Roe. This time I didn’t click away. I started to feel warm with anger. The post said Roe would be overturned, linking an article about a leaked draft decision from the Supreme Court.
As the blood rushed to my face, I Googled more and understood that what I was reading was true: The Supreme Court is going to reverse Roe v. Wade. I got up from my chair, no longer able to sit.
I got a notification from my phone. It was an email from the Hillel at Stanford saying there would be a protest for reproductive rights on campus because of the leaked draft. I grabbed my sunglasses and ran out the door. I didn’t stop running. I couldn’t stop running. I wanted to scream: “Why! Why?”
I am not an angry person, but for the first time in years, I felt angry. I also felt another familiar feeling that I haven’t felt in a long time: a sense of suppression for being a woman. My rights were being taken away from me, and unfortunately, not for the first time.
I grew up in an ultra-orthodox Jewish community in upstate New York completely cut off from the outside world. Women in my community were raised to be wives and mothers—nothing else. We had to cover our bodies, we couldn’t wear pants, and not only was abortion prohibited, but so was birth control. As a lover of sports and engineering, I never fit in. Yet, I was always forced to. I wanted to run, explore, sing and bike. Yet, women in my community were prohibited from doing such things.
At age 13, my mother escaped the community, and for the first time in my life, I was exposed to the outside world. Thanks to her, I finally broke out of the religion myself at age 16. It takes time to deprogram yourself.
I felt another familiar feeling that I haven’t felt in a long time: a sense of suppression for being a woman. My rights were being taken away from me, and unfortunately, not for the first time.
I am now a student at Stanford University studying science, technology, and societies. Despite my terrible education growing up, I made it into the outside world, the free world. But on May 5, I felt as though my freedom was being taken away from me again. My freedom to choose how I live in my body. My freedom to decide when and when not to have children.
I was sexually assaulted when I was 16. I had unprotected sex with a man double my age. I finally made it into a world that I thought would support me through experiences such as this. But here I am again, feeling trapped in a world that doesn’t accept me as a woman.
Just like last time, I am not going to sit around and accept what is happening to me. I am going to do something about it.
That is how Cuteri: Cute Uteri came to be. I wanted to utilize my engineering and designer skills to create an NFT collection where 100 percent of the proceeds are donated to pro-abortion organizations. I wanted to not only support women with reproductive rights, but as a woman in crypto, I wanted to bring more women into this space. The NFT collection I created includes learning materials for women about ways to easily create crypto wallets.
I refuse to be oppressed again. I refuse to be pushed down or to be told how I can live in my body. Cuteri is a movement. It is my stance. It is my way of showing the world that I escaped and that I will never go back. Our body, our choices—always.
Sign and share Ms.’s relaunched “We Have Had Abortions” petition—whether you yourself have had an abortion, or simply stand in solidarity with those who have—to let the Supreme Court, Congress and the White House know: We will not give up the right to safe, legal, accessible abortion.