The Story of SpeakYourStory
Our founder, Katie Morris, was inspired to act after reading an upsetting article about the complete absence of movies starring female characters. Katie found the most powerful call to action in this statement,
“In many parts of the country right now, if you want to go see a movie in the theater and see a current movie about a woman – any story about any woman that isn’t a documentary or a cartoon – you can’t. You cannot. There are not any. You cannot take yourself to one, take a friend to one, take your daughter to one. There are not any.”
(Linda Holmes, At the Movies, The Women Are Gone)
Katie’s heart broke as she realized that without honest and authentic story-telling, women’s chances to find solidarity, comfort, and love – all the things that make a community – are completely diminished. Katie’s inner, defiant self soon embraced the beautiful thought that instead of waiting for Hollywood or anyone else to speak for us, women could tell our own stories. Speaking for ourselves carries a greater redemptive power, and we can, and must, create this community together.
Likewise, SpeakYourStory co-founder, Teal Cracraft, is passionate about creating a safe community that encourages women to take ownership of their stories and change the female narrative. Despite having more financial and political power than ever before, we’re still battling societal assumptions about what it means to be a woman in a culture historically defined by men. These burdensome and outdated narratives can only be changed by us, one story at a time.
And the beautiful truth is that, within every woman’s life, there are remarkable stories ~
We grieve, we do things we later regret.
We hold tight to those we love, and sometimes we push them away.
We have babies, we have miscarriages, and we have abortions.
We fight for power, we fight for love, and sometimes we fight each other.
We read books that inspire us, and go on all kinds of adventures.
We are brave, and we are scared. We leave, we stay put.
We put our faith in God and the unknown, we question our own strength.
We hurt ourselves and each other. We heal old wounds.
We show kindness to strangers, enemies and loved ones alike.
Our dream at SpeakYourStory is of empowerment. To speak up for oneself is an extremely brave act. When we tell our own stories, we realize strength and courage that may have been hidden in the shadows. And when we share our stories with others, we create a powerful opportunity for another woman to find her own strength, her own redemption, and her own voice. We have the power to produce a strong and resilient community of women through our vulnerable, non-judgmental and brave story-telling.
We’re asking that you join us by writing and sharing a story. You may be afraid, or think your story doesn’t hold value or maybe you think you don’t have a story to tell. We deeply believe in the healing power of this pursuit, and want you to know that no matter how mundane your story seems, or how lonely or embarrassed you are, SpeakYourStory wants to hear from you. Your story is important because YOU are important.
Photo credit: “Ava” by Charlie Anderson