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12 Celebrities Who Had Fertility Struggles, Miscarriages or IVF and What They Have to Say About It

Michelle Obama

Michelle Obama
By Gage Skidmore, licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

The former First Lady, who conceived daughters, Malia and Sasha, with the help of IVF wrote in her memoir Becoming:

“We were trying to get pregnant and it wasn’t going well. We had one pregnancy test come back positive, which caused us both to forget every worry and swoon with joy, but a couple of weeks later I had a miscarriage, which left me physically uncomfortable and cratered any optimism we felt.”

She told Good Morning America: "I felt like I failed, because I didn't know how common miscarriages were because we don't talk about them."

"We sit in our own pain, thinking that somehow we're broken. So, that's one of the reasons why I think it's important to talk to young mothers about the fact that miscarriages happen, and the biological clock is real."

Hugh Jackman

Hugh Jackman
By Gage Skidmore, licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Wolverine star Hugh Jackman and his wife Deborra-Lee Furness adopted two children in the early 2000s.

Before that, they had suffered two miscarriages while undergoing IVF in the 1990s. He told ABC's Katie Couric: “Until you go through it, you don’t understand, it’s not talked about a lot.”

“Deb and I always wanted to adopt," he said. "So that was always in our plan. We didn’t know where in the process that would happen but biologically obviously, we tried and it was not happening for us and it is a difficult time.”

Mariah Carey

Mariah Carey
By J from the UK, licensed under CC BY 2.0

Singer Mariah Carey and her husband Nick Cannon experienced miscarriage before becoming parents to twins, Monroe and Moroccan, with the help of fertility treatments and acupuncture sessions.

The 41-year-old singer told Barbara Walters:

“The main thing I did that was tough, was to go on progesterone like every month … and then when I was pregnant, I had to stay with the progesterone for 10 weeks. It minimizes the chance of miscarriage by 50 percent.”

Kim Kardashian-West

By mihailsemin, CC PDM 1.0

"I had so many complications," the reality star and business woman told C Magazine, reflecting on trying to conceive for the second time after having daughter North with singer Kanye West. "I had this condition called placenta accreta. There were a couple little operations to fix all that, so that created a little hole in my uterus, which I think made it really tough to get pregnant again.

"It was a long road. I would go to the doctor in Beverly Hills every day at five in the morning to get tested to see if I was ovulating."

After the birth of their son Saint, the Kardashian-Wests used a gestational surrogate for their daughter, Chicago, and son, Psalm.

Sarah Jessica Parker

Sarah Jessica Parker and Matthew Broderick
By David Shankbone is licensed under CC BY 3.0

In an interview with Vogue, the Sex and the City actress discussed the 2009 birth of her twin daughters Tabitha and Marion with fellow actor Matthew Broderick via gestational surrogate.

SJP had previously given birth to their oldest child, a son called James, in 2002 herself.

“Meeting your children rather than giving birth to them, it's as if, um, it's—suspended animation. The gestational experience is gone. It's as if everything else disappears for a moment, and the world goes silent and—I can't explain it except to say that nothing else existed."

"I don't remember anything but the blanket on the bed that they were lying on and my husband's face and their faces and my son's. It's literally as if sound is sucked from the room. Time stands still. It's so different, and equally extraordinary. I am very poor at describing it. But it's amazing."

Celine Dion

Celine Dion
By celebrityabc, licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

After enduring six rounds of IVF and suffering a miscarriage, Celine Dion gave birth to twin boys in 2010. In 2013, the singer opened up about her struggles:

“For the twins I did IVF six times one after the other … I’d done five years at Caesars Palace and went half a year around the world on tour and it was finally time to get pregnant again. I thought as long as my health permitted me and unless my doctor thought physically I couldn’t do it, then I would go on with the IVF until someone told me to stop. With any pregnancy, whether it’s through IVF or not, you feel a danger. You have to remain positive and try to relax as much as possible. I always say that my children’s first country is inside of me, so I try to make it a good one and be healthy."

"People stop because it’s very expensive but I kept on going, I was not going to stop just because I had a contract for singing. I would have hated every song for the rest of my life, so I said try to postpone the Caesars Palace shows because it wasn’t a good enough reason for me not to try for a baby. A life or a contract? I couldn’t live with that.”

Jordana Brewster

Jordana Brewster
By Andre Portfolio, licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

The Fast & Furious star told Cosmopolitan:

"I couldn't carry a first, I was scared. I had no idea what it entailed...then I started researching agencies. I met with one called Agency for Surrogacy Solutions. Most of the people who worked there had used surrogacy to have a child or been a surrogate themselves, so I felt like they really got it."

"[Surrogacy] taught me a lot to have to rely on someone else to carry my baby for me, because I'm such a private and self-sufficient person. It's the most intimate leap of faith and trust you can take."

Emma Thompson

By World Economic Forum, licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Having previously experienced miscarriage, in 1999 the Oscar-winning actress birth to her daughter, Gaia, through IVF.

"After that, we tried to have another child, it didn't work, and I went into a deep clinical depression," she told Entertainment Weekly. "It's only now that I no longer count other people's children or judge myself harshly for not providing my daughter with a sibling."

In 2003, she and her partner actor Greg Wise adopted a former child soldier from Rwanda named Tindy. "I couldn't have more children, and that was hard; but perhaps if I had [had more], I'd have missed out on this extra act of mothering that I've had with Tindy," Thompson told The Guardian in 2010. "Because there was space in my life for him, and I don't think there would have been space if I'd had another young child around."

Nicole Kidman

Nicole Kidman
Nicole Kidman at the 83rd Academy Awards Red Carpet IMG_1427" by RedCarpetReport, licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

After Nicole Kidman struggled to conceive with ex-husband Tom Cruise, they adopted children their now-adult children, Isabella and Connor.

After divorcing Cruise and marrying Keith Urban in 2006, Kidman gave birth to a daughter, Sunday Rose, before using a gestational surrogate to have her younger sister, Faith.

“Anyone that’s been in the place of wanting another child or wanting a child knows the disappointment, the pain, and the loss that you go through trying and struggling with fertility,” she told Australia’s 60 Minutes. “Fertility is such a big thing, and it’s not something I’ve ever run away from talking about.”

“We were in a place of desperately wanting another child. “This opportunity arose for us, and I couldn’t get pregnant…children are children—you’ll die for your children. And when you feel that as a parent—that’s the unconditional love.”

Gabrielle Union

Gabrielle Union
Gabrielle Union arrives wearing Lloyd Klein, by Lloyd Klein - licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

"I have had eight or nine miscarriages," wrote Gabrielle Union in her memoir We're Going to Need More Wine. "For three years, my body has been a prisoner of trying to get pregnant— I've either been about to go into an IVF cycle, in the middle of an IVF cycle, or coming out of an IVF cycle."

In August 2018, Union revealed she was diagnosed with adenomyosis, which she realized might have been why she and husband Dwyane Wade struggled get pregnant.

Tyra Banks

Tyra Banks
By david_shankbone, licensed under CC BY 2.0

Speaking 2015, the supermodel reflected: "It’s so funny when I was 23 years old, I used to tell myself, ‘In three years, I’m going to have kids.’ Then I turned 24. ‘In three years, I’m going to have kids,'”

“Every single year I kept saying that. And then after a while it’s like, ‘Okay, now I want to.’ And it’s not so easy.”

Banks welcomed a son York via a gestational surrogate in 2016.

“The best present we worked and prayed so hard for is finally here,” she said.

Chrissy Teigen

Chrissy Teigen
By Walt Disney Television, licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0

While originally planning to "be pregnant all through" her 30s, while undergoing IVF prior to having her two children, Chrissy Teigen shared that "the number of embryos we have left is not matching the number of people I want at my dinner table, so I'll have to do it again."

"I've always pictured everyone everyone around the table for the holidays and together once a week. It will be heartbreaking if it doesn't end up happening, but hopefully it will. We've got some embryos on hold."

"I wish I had frozen my eggs earlier," she said. "We have a few more on ice. Who knows what will work? ... It would have been better if I had made a ton of embryos when I was already doing the shots. Because now I have to do the shot thing again. I think about that."


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