Sarah Drew Asked ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Director To Show Working Mother Truths

TV shows and movies don’t always show the truths about motherhood, especially when it comes to working mothers. Sarah Drew wanted to change that with Grey’s Anatomy and started by asking for a certain scene that showed up in last week’s episode. Some fans will have overlooked the scene, but many working mothers rejoiced.


Grey’s Anatomy is one of those shows that has tried to show the truths of being a working mother. This was more in the earlier days, rather than in the more recent seasons. Miranda Bailey had an incident of leaking breast milk after getting emotional after giving birth to Little Tuck, and Meredith Grey was seen in the attending’s lounge pumping under a blanket while reading up on research for a surgery later that day.

While Season 12 was focused on a custody battle, fans have noticed that the children have been seen and mentioned less and less in recent years. Sarah Drew wanted to bring in the realities of being a working mother back into the show.


Drew plays April Kepner on Grey’s Anatomy and has had two children while working as an actress. Both times she had to pump breast milk for her babies while on sets and in the middle of filming, and the actress said that she wanted that part of being a working mother on the screen. She needed to tell that part of the story.

However, it wasn’t until filming the scene that she requested the inclusion of the breast pump. Drew admitted that when away from her children, she would have pumped, and there are plenty of other mothers who do. Kevin McKidd, who plays Owen Hunt and was directing the episode of Grey’s Anatomy, agreed to include something.

At the beginning of Japril: The Sequel, as last week’s Grey’s Anatomy episode has been nicknamed, April was seen on the phone in her motel room, packing away her breast pumping supplies with a full bottle of milk. It was implied that she had just been pumping her own milk.


It would have been easy for filming angles to obscure the actions in the shot, but Drew had another request. She wanted to make sure the angle was wide enough to fit it all in, which McKidd agreed to. Drew has admitted that she celebrates even the smallest moments of showing everything that working mothers, especially breastfeeding babies, have to do. There is a lot of equipment that they need to plan to take with them.

There doesn’t seem to be any argument from McKidd for the Grey’s Anatomy episode, according to The Daily Mail. He shared that showing life commitments and showing everyday events is an important part of the show. This part of being a working mother was a necessity, and he is glad that it was portrayed well.

Grey’s Anatomy continues to house a daycare within the hospital, which Drew says is another important part of the show. This isn’t just for working mothers, but for working parents. It’s an important to show the realities, which are often forgotten about for the sake of TV and drama.


There are still many questions that fans have all the time about the children. The most important one is why the children aren’t shown that much. This is to do with the L.A. child labor laws that Grey’s Anatomy showrunner Shonda Rhimes (and all other TV show producers) must follow. Children are only allowed to work a small number of hours, which isn’t often enough for TV show filming. The children will only be included when there is a genuine need for them. In last week’s episode, seeing the realities of parents working away and leaving children with grandparents was a necessity and shown through the use of the Averys, April, and baby Harriet.

Grey’s Anatomy Season 13 continues on Thursdays at 8 p.m. on ABC.

[Featured Image by Christopher Polk/Getty Images]