This human rights violation happens across religious, cultural and socioeconomic groups in countries around the world, including in the United States. Jennifer wants to share her story so that other girls and women will know they are not alone, that it’s not “normal”, it’s not OK, and there is hope.
"We were sent on a long trip. Mom and dad told us we were going somewhere special. It felt like an adventure," she said.
But the excitement quickly turned to terror.
"I remember my arms and legs being held down and somebody covered my eyes. It was awful. I think I blacked out and when I came to they had tied my legs together," she said.
"On the trip home I knew we had both gone through something terrible. When we got home my mom told us we weren't ever to talk about what had happened."
Jennifer learned that Kentucky, where she lives now, does not have a state law banning FGM, so she decided to do something about it. Sign on to her petition and help ensure that no girls in Kentucky can be subjected to this form of torture.
Support and resources for survivors
If you or someone you know have experienced or think you have experienced FGM, you are not alone. Other survivors can share wisdom and strength. Here are some resources to start with: US End FGM/C Network
If you are a FGM survivor and would like to share your own story with us, please share it here.