The actor says having a baby solidified her thoughts about abortion rights
We don’t know much about Milana Vayntrub besides that we’ve loved her acting career, which has included roles on This is Us, ER, and Silicon Valley — not to mention her long run as AT&T saleswoman Lily Adams. But now the notably private actor is opening up in a big way to speak up for abortion rights and tell her own story.
Following an Instagram post she wrote late last year, she wrote a first-person op-ed in The Daily Beast on Monday sharing her whole story.
The gist? She recently gave birth to her first child, and the experience made her realize how important abortion rights are to all women (and everyone with a uterus).
“My birth story is inseparable from my abortion story,” she writes, saying that the almost unbearable pain of her labor and delivery made her even more sure that no person should have to go through it unless they want to.
“Becoming a mother has made me even more adamant about access to safe, legal abortions,” she writes. “I now know how hard it is to carry a bowling ball-sized human to full term. I know the back-breaking will it takes to give birth to a baby. I know the toll of sleepless nights and a torn body, the necessity of support, the pause it puts on your career, relationships, and goals. I cannot fathom the cruelty of enduring all this plus a lifetime of childrearing if you do not want it.”
In the second part of the article, Vayntrub says that she became pregnant 10 years ago, when she was pursuing acting and comedy in Los Angeles, living with her boyfriend in a small apartment and barely making ends meet. When she missed a few birth control pills, she got pregnant — and didn’t have to think long about what to do. Within a couple of weeks, she had a simple procedure in her doctor’s office.
“My abortion story is uncomplicated and straightforward, based on a decision that was all my own,” she says. “I understand this is a privilege. I also understand that access to abortion should never be a privilege; it should be a protected right.”
Vayntrub says she’s speaking up because she’s very worried about the future of abortion rights in the United States.
“In 2021 alone, 600 abortion restrictions were introduced across the country; 90 were enacted into law,” she writes. “That’s more than any year since Roe v. Wade was decided in 1973. And right now, the Supreme Court is deliberating a case that could overturn Roe v. Wade.”
She also pointed out that very specific groups of people have less abortion access than others.
“Over the past decade, I’ve hardly thought about my abortion, except for when I think of those who may not have access to one,” she writes. “Abortion restrictions disproportionately harm those already most vulnerable in our country—from Black, Latino, and Indigenous communities to young people, immigrants, those living in poverty, and rural areas. This comes as no surprise. Marginalized Americans have always been the most impacted by racist and classist reproductive policies throughout history.”
Specifically, she mentioned the Women’s Health Protection Act (WHPA), which the Senate will vote on soon. Encouraging our Senators to vote for this Act will help keep our abortion rights intact.
“For so many reasons, I am grateful for the beautifully boring abortion I had and the essential health care I received,” she concludes. “Mainly because today, I can show up for my little person with open arms knowing I’ve chosen our life together.”