Kerry Washington details her experience having an abortion in her 20s in her new memoir, Thicker Than Water. Time Magazine published an excerpt on Tuesday (September 26th) along with an intro by the Little Fires Everywhere actress.
“In my late 20s, I made the difficult and very private decision to have an abortion. About a decade later, I played a character that was the first woman to be shown undergoing an abortion procedure on network television,” Washington wrote in the intro, referring to her Scandal character Olivia Pope.
“While, as an actor, I was proud to portray a woman exercising her right to choose, in real life I never talked about my own abortion publicly,” she added, revealing that she used a “made-up name, a pretend address, a nonexistent email” when she received the procedure. “My shame and embarrassment inspired a private silence that hid my personal truth and made me complicit in a culture of secrecy that shames women, our bodies, our choices, and our power.”
“As I was writing my memoir, however, I realized how important it is to speak openly about experiences that have been kept in the dark, because when we do so we liberate ourselves and each other,” the Save the Last Dance actress wrote.