• Ellen Pompeo stars as "Meredith" on Grey's Anatomy
  • Pompeo wanted to leave due to work environment
  • The actress explains what changed things for her

Actress Ellen Pompeo talked to Taraji P. Henson about her time on the hit series Grey's Anatomy in 2019 for Variety. Season 18 is now airing, and fans have had to deal with many beloved characters' departures from the show. However, Pompeo's "Meredith" has stuck around through it all.

Pompeo has admitted that she has considered quitting her role as "Meredith" on several occasions. But while she has spoken of a sometimes terrible and even toxic situation on the set in the past, she revealed what happened that changed everything for her.

Ellen Pompeo as "Meredith Grey" in Grey's Anatomy

Pompeo says everything changed when she became a mother

Pompeo said it was motherhood that ultimately shifted her perspective. "I had my daughter in season six," she shared. "Things changed from there because I had someone else to think about besides myself." She explained her decision to stay with the series, saying that in order to be able to provide for her daughter, she did not want to give up her well-paid and secure job.

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From then on, it was clear to her that a lot of things had to change on set. Since Season 10, Pompeo has been actively promoting a more diverse, fair, and harmonious work environment alongside the show's creator, Shonda Rhimes. "It became my goal to have an experience there that I could be happy and proud about," she said.

With Grey's Anatomy, Pompeo has not only achieved commercial success, but also various personal milestones that she had set as a goal for herself. She wants to be a role model for young women and continues to fight for equality in the film and series industry, praising the Grey's Anatomy set for its ethnic and cultural diversity.