What is the self, and what does it mean to give care? Philosophers, activists, artists, scientists, people of all inclinations and positions have pondered on, played with, and struggled to come to meaningful definitions about the issues these questions address. Without care, can there be a self at all?
And that is sadly the case with so many women. Speak of exercise and nutrition as a path to wellbeing and self-care, sure. They will read Prevention and Health type of magazines, employ a personal trainer, go to a yoga class, or follow a dietician’s advice. But speak to them of yoni eggs, masturbation and self-pleasure, and you are suddenly not speaking a language they understand!
Stress, burn out, uncontrollable emotional outbursts, depression, anxiety, migraines and cancer, are some of the effects that human rights defense work has on women human rights defenders (WHRD)s around the world, and the ones that often make them quit their important work. AWID spoke with Jessica Horn, Senior Advisor for the African Institute for Integrated Responses to Violence Against Women and HIV/AIDS (AIR) about the politics of self-care and well-being for WHRDs.