Dee Dee Bridgewater, an award-winning jazz singer who hosts a syndicated NPR show, is publicly sharing the story of having an illegal abortion. Bridgewater describes the harrowing experience in a new video for the Center for Reproductive Rights’ “Draw The Line” campaign, which is mobilizing Americans to fight back against the mounting attacks on abortion access.
“I remember being very humiliated, to the point that today, I haven’t thought about this for years. Thinking about it makes me want to cry,” Bridgewater says about the illegal procedure she had in 1968, before Roe v. Wade guaranteed women’s right to choose.
Bridgewater describes going to a hotel room to meet a friend of hers who was a nurse. Her friend inserted a rubber hose into her body and told her to leave it there for the next several days. Two days later, Bridewater started to hemorrhage and was rushed to an emergency room.
“I just remember this excruciating pain,” she says. “I am appalled that they are trying to take away the rights we fought so hard for…I am saying to all women, stand up for your rights. You are the one who should decide what you will do with your body. To take away our reproductive choice can hurt you.”