The surrogate paid by TV personality Sherri Shepherd and her estranged husband Lamar Sally to carry their baby wants her story to act as a warning to others.
Jessica Bartholomew, a 23-year-old waitress, recently spoke out against Shepherd, 47, in an interview with Sally, 43. The single mom was reportedly paid $30,000 by the estranged couple to be their gestational surrogate and conceive a baby using Sally's sperm but not Shepherd's egg, but when she was six months pregnant the pair split and, subsequently, the former "The View" cohost changed her mind about the baby.
"I don't want this to happen again to any other woman because what happened gives surrogacy a bad name and it's not a bad thing," Bartholomew told Inside Edition. "We give families gift of life. I can't wait for it to all be over."
Bartholomew is frustrated after being caught in the middle of Shepherd's divorce from the Los Angeles-based script writer.
Sally, who has been taking care of 6-month-old baby boy Lamar Junior (L.J.) since he was born on Aug. 5 last year, is said to be suing Shepherd for child support and alimony, but the comedian claims he defrauded her into signing the surrogate agreement.
"I am angry with Sherri because she never once contacted me to tell me what was happening. It was kind of like I was left out in the cold," Bartholomew explained, adding that if given the opportunity, "I would ask Sherri why she did what she did if she thought it was okay to do something like that ... I just don't understand how she can act like this baby is nonexistent. It just blows my mind."
Shepherd met Sally through mutual friends at a party before they tied the knot in 2011 and Sally claims his estranged wife insisted on having a baby from the very get-go. The devout Christian reportedly had trouble conceiving herself, despite already being a mom to a 9-year-old son from her previous marriage, and ultimately they decided to use a surrogate.
Sally has applied for Medi-Cal, a program offering low-cost health coverage for children and adults with low income, to assist with his son's health issues and, as a result the state reportedly reached out to Bartholomew for child support.
"Sherri wouldn't put L.J., our son, on her insurance policy," said Sally. "I needed insurance, so I had to go to the state. They said that we have to go after the mother for child support and they could only go by what's on the birth certificate and unfortunately that was Jessica's name."
In Sept., Shepherd said there is more to the story than what has been reported in the media.
"Remember there is always more sides to a story than the 'exclusive' stories one person is selling for money to the tabloids," Shepherd allegedly wrote in a private message to blogger Sandra Rose. "Truth to come out unless you are of the same ilk as everyone else. God Bless."
The former ABC employee reportedly filed for divorce from Sally in the state of New Jersey where courts generally don't recognize surrogate agreements. Sally filed in California, where courts are said to be more open to these situations.