“Dancing with the Stars” pro Cheryl Burke opened up on social media about receiving an abortion when she was 18.
In a candid TikTok video shared on Friday, June 24, Burke spoke to the camera for over three minutes about her experience after the Supreme Court voted to overturn Roe v. Wade earlier that day. The dancer said that her story was difficult for her to talk about, but she felt compelled to share her story regardless.
“It weighs heavy in my heart because I had an abortion when I was 18-years-old and if wasn’t for places like Planned Parenthood, I would be a mother," she said. "And I wouldn’t have been a great mother and I definitely wouldn’t be sitting here with you today.”
Burke, 38, continued her video, adding, “You’re taking away women’s rights, our bodies, our freedom. Our bodies have nothing to do with anybody else, right?”
“This is a decision that we need to make,” she continued. “I got an abortion while I was going through a really huge transition in my life. I was practicing safe sex. I was using protection and I was on birth control and s——— happens. I was two weeks pregnant when I got an abortion and I remember rolling up to Planned Parenthood with picketers holding anti-abortion signs and that alone was traumatic. On top of it all, the whole process is traumatic, and the fact that now you’re making it illegal for us women to make this decision about our own bodies is absolutely insanity.”
Burke said that the decision to receive an abortion was “nobody’s business” and she remains happy with her decision and has “no regrets.”
“There’s no shame behind it,” she explained. “I have just chosen to share it now but that doesn’t mean that there was any shame I was living with. I think I made the right decision. I wouldn’t be sitting here, I wouldn’t be passionately doing what I love to do if it wasn’t for the right to have an abortion and this has nothing to do with anybody else.”
She urged people to think about the potential consequences to the restrictions and emphasized her disappointment in the ruling, calling it a “personal attack.”
“I’m sorry to all the women out there who are currently pregnant or may be victims of rape or abuse and are now pregnant,” she said. “This is horrible news for you and for anybody who has to deal with this in the future. This is absolutely absurd and I stand with the people who also agree with me and I believe that we need to continue to fight. We shouldn’t stop fighting for our rights as women.”
Nearly two months after a leaked draft opinion that would vote to overturn abortion rights circulated, the United States Supreme Court ruled on Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health, which effectively overturned Roe v. Wade, a landmark case that granted a constitutional right to access legal abortion in the country.
With this decision, abortion will be banned and limited in at least 22 states and territories while only 16 states and Washington D.C. have laws that will continue to protect the right to abortion.