It can be heartbreaking for couple’s that go through infertility struggles. But this is more common than many would expect. Many men and women suffer in silence, as there’s still a taboo associated with discussing infertility and miscarriages. The celebrities in this article have all openly discussed how difficult it has been for them to expand their families. Some celebrity couples tried for decades before accepting they couldn’t grow their family the natural ways, and each quote is more difficult to swallow than the next.
Luckily, many of these couple’s stories ended with a happy ending. Some of these celebrities were lucky enough to overcome their struggles, and welcome a baby the natural way, even though their pregnancies were often long and difficult. On the other hand, some celebrity couples chose to expand their family a different way after deciding the natural way wasn’t going to work for them. Many families decided to hire a surrogate to deliver their little one, or they opted for adoption and welcomed a child into their home who otherwise wouldn’t have one.
We love that these celebrities chose to speak openly about their experience, because it’s time to put an end to the stigma. Their words have been inspiration for countless other parents who are going through similar challenges. Infertility struggles can be devastating for a couple, so it makes no sense to keep this topic of discussion bottled up.
Conceiving hasn’t been Courtney Cox’s problem. Instead, the actress has struggled with carrying a pregnancy to term. She has spoken in the past about how she has experienced multiple miscarriages. She and her then-husband, actor David Arquette, struggled for many years before welcoming their daughter, Coco, in 2004. They had been trying to expand their family since their marriage in 1999, and after their daughter’s birth they still had trouble conceiving, which is why they never gave Coco a sibling.
In 2003, before welcoming her only child, Courtney told People, “I get pregnant pretty easily, but I have a hard time keeping them ... I don't say it's a walk in the park. But what are you going to do? We just try again."
Troubles conceiving is often the reason families choose to only have one child. Courtney’s infertility struggles are ones many women experience, which makes this celebrity’s journey to motherhood all the more relatable.
Singer Celine Dion had a long and difficult journey to becoming a mother. She and her late husband, Rene Angelil, struggled for decades to expand their family. In 2000, the singer underwent two small operations at a fertility clinic to improve her chances of conceiving. They also used in vitro fertilization. The couple eventually welcomed their first son, Rene-Charles, in 2001.
However, the couple still wanted to grow their family further. Celine continued to undergo IVF treatments for multiple years, and finally became pregnant in 2010. She was initially pregnant with triplets, but lost one of the babies not far into the pregnant. In an interview with Hello! Canada Magazine, Celine said, “One little baby decided to step back to help the other two survive.” She added, “The doctors said to me if there's something wrong, nature takes its course. I still thzink of the one who stepped back. I'm sure every woman has the feeling about the little one that's not there." She eventually welcomed fraternal twin sons Eddy and Nelson later in 2010.
Of her IVF procedures, Celine also shared, “"We tried five times before I got pregnant. On the sixth try, it worked out. We were blessed twice." Her husband added, "We are living the reality of the majority of couples who have to use [IVF]. The process can be long and arduous.”
Giuliana Rancic famously struggled to conceive for many years in the spotlight. Giuliana and her husband, Bill Rancic, were married in 2007, and reportedly began trying for a baby in 2009. They’ve both been very open in interviews about their struggles.
In 2010, the couple reportedly started IVF. Giuliana became pregnant later in the spring, but she miscarried at only 9 weeks. Several more rounds of IVF proved unsuccessful. However, during the procedure, her doctor recommended she get a mammogram, and Giuliana ended up finding out she had breast cancer. Giuliana eventually underwent a double mastectomy, but has been living cancer-free for sometime now. Due to her condition, The Fashion Police star and her husband decided to stop trying to conceive naturally and instead use a surrogate. In 2012, they finally welcomed a little boy, named Edward Duke, via gestational surrogate.
When asked if she had ever lost hope due to her infertility, Giuliana told Today’s Parent, “Never lose hope! Everything happens for a reason and there is a greater plan for you. One of my favourite quotes is 'Everything will be OK in the end. If it’s not OK, it’s not the end.' I would advise anyone exploring [surrogacy] to do all their research," she said. "It is important to make sure that whatever path one chooses is right for them."
Model Chrissy Teigen and her husband, musician John Legend, are now the proud parents to baby Luna. But their road to parenthood wasn’t always so easy. The couple have openly shared that they used IVF to conceive their daughter. Chrissy has also spoken openly about her trouble conceiving, and how long it took the couple to finally become parents.
In 2015, during Chrissy’s pregnancy with Luna, she opened up to FABLife, and explained, "I will say, honestly, John and I are having trouble. We would have kids five, six years ago if it'd happened, but my gosh, it's been a process! And we've seen fertility doctors ... So, anytime somebody asks me if I'm going to have kids, I'm like, 'One day, you're going to ask that to the wrong girl who is really struggling, and it's going to be really hurtful to them. And I hate that. So, I hate it. Stop asking me!'"
Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, know a thing or two about infertility. The couple tried for years to start a family before welcoming their daughter. The couple began dating in 2003, and by 2012 they were married.
Priscilla suffered three public miscarriages, in which both she and her husband were open about. The couple eventually announced her pregnancy in 2015 when they felt she was too far along to risk a miscarriage. Their daughter, Maxima (often called “Max), was born in 2015. In March 2017, Mark and Priscilla revealed they are once again expecting.
During his wife’s first successful pregnancy in 2015, Mark shared this statement on Facebook, “We've been trying to have a child for a couple of years and have had three miscarriages along the way. You feel so hopeful when you learn you're going to have a child. You start imagining who they'll become and dreaming of hopes for their future. You start making plans, and then they're gone. It's a lonely experience. Most people don't discuss miscarriages because you worry your problems will distance you or reflect upon you — as if you're defective or did something to cause this. So you struggle on your own... We hope that sharing our experience will give more people the same hope we felt and will help more people feel comfortable sharing their stories as well."
Sarah Jessica Parker’s family laid low when they were expecting the arrival of their twin daughters. Not many knew this was due to the actress’ long-time infertility struggles. Sarah and actor Mathew Broderick were married in 1997, but they didn’t welcome their first child, son James, until 2002.
Though Sarah had a natural pregnancy with her first child, she couldn’t do the same again. Sarah has shared how many years it took the couple to finally get pregnant, and they ended up turning to a surrogate. Their twin daughters, Marion and Tabitha, were eventually born in 2009.
Right when Sarah announced she and her family were expecting twins, she told Access Hollywood, ““Well, you know, we’ve been trying to expand our family for a number of years and we actually have explored a variety of ways of doing so.” She added, ““[Surrogacy] was one of the things we discussed with seriousness that had real possibilities for us.
When asked if she’d struggled with infertility in the past, Sarah commented, “Yeah, I mean, I couldn’t pretend otherwise...It would be odd to have made this choice if I was able to, you know, have successful pregnancies since my son’s birth."
Elizabeth Banks has revealed that it took her a long time to finally accept she could not get pregnant. The actress and her husband, Max Handelman, tried for years to conceive but were unable to due to embryo implantation issues.
Eventually, the couple decided to use a gestational surrogate to become parents. They became parents to son Felix in 2012, and son Magnus in 2013. Of the emotional experience, Elizabeth once told Women’s Health, “"Once my focus became the baby and not the pregnancy, it was a very easy decision [to use a surrogate]."
The actress has since spoken out about how wonderful her surrogate experience was. On her website, she revealed, “"the experience 'exceeded all expectations' and that she's 'thankful for the support from friends and family, as well as the Center for Surrogate Parenting for helping make all this possible."
Even though Jimmy Fallon is a huge TV personality, not many people know much about his personal life. It turns out, Jimmy and his wife, film producer Nancy Juvonen, struggle to conceive. After many years of trying, Jimmy revealed that he and his wife chose to use a gestational surrogate to deliver both of their daughters. Jimmy and Nancy are now parents to two young daughters; Winnie Rose, born in 2013, and Frances Cole, born in 2014.
In an interview with Today in 2013, Jimmy shared, ““We've tried a bunch of things … anyone who's tried will know, it's just awful… we had a surrogate. We tried before, we told people and then it didn’t happen, and it’s just really depressing, it’s really hard.” He added, “We tried for a long time, for five years, but if there’s anyone out there who's trying and losing hope, just hang in there. Try every avenue, try anything you can do because you’ll get there. You’ll end up with a family and it’s so worth it. It is the most worth it thing.”
Since Brooke Shields is a mother twice over, many don’t expect that the actress has had troubles with infertility. Brooke and her husband Chris Henchy welcomed daughter Rowan Francis in 20003, and another daughter, Grier Hammond, in 2006. But before each of her pregnancies, Brooke and her partner struggled to conceive.
"After a while, when you’re not successful, you start to associate the word ‘failure’ every time you pee on a stick and it doesn’t come out the right color.” The actress shared in her 2006 book Down Came the Rain. She added, “What starts out as a dream becomes a project that’s all consuming — everywhere you look, women are pregnant, and every song on the radio seems like it’s all about being pregnant! It becomes a very frustrating, frightening place."
Not every family that can’t have a baby the natural way chooses a surrogate. Hugh Jackman and his wife, Deborra-Lee Furness, struggled for many years to conceive. While they always knew they wanted to adopt, they had also wanted to have several biological children first. However, Deborra failed to get pregnant after several rounds of treatments, and she ended up having two devastating miscarriages. That’s when the couple decided to go ahead with adoption, and they have since adopted son Oscar and daughter Ava.
Of their struggles, Hugh once told Australia’s Herald Sun, ““Trying to have children is wonderful and when you feel as though that’s not going to happen, there’s a certain anxiety that goes with it. But when we decided we’d had enough of IVF, we went ahead with adoption."
For many years, Tyra Banks focused on her bustling career instead of her personal life. But when the model and her long-time boyfriend, Erik Asla, began trying to have a baby, she discovered her infertility problems. Tyra has revealed that she underwent many unsuccessful IVF treatments before turning to surrogacy to grow her family. She and her boyfriend eventually welcomed son York via a surrogate in January 2016.
Of her struggles, Tyra has said, "I've had some not happy moments with that, very traumatic moments. It's difficult as you get older. It's not something that can just happen." She also reveals how overwhelmed she was to meet her little one. “As I gaze into the beautiful eyes of my son, I think about all the people who struggle with fertility or carrying a child and continue to pray for them every day. My hopes and dreams are filled with well wishes that they get to feel what my little treasure, York Banks Asla, feels like in my arms.”
After years of trying to conceive, Angela Basset eventually decided to use a surrogate to expand her family. Finally in 2006, Angela and her husband, actor Courtney B. Vance, welcomed their twins, son Staler Josiah and daughter Bronwyn Golden, in 2006.
Since then, Angela has been open with the public about her struggle with infertility and experience with a surrogate. In 2013, she shared with JET Magazine, “After trying and trying, I unfortunately couldn’t have my babies. It was my reality. I heard about the surrogate option and it worked out beautifully.”
Not many celebrities are open about using a surrogate when faced with infertility struggles. Angela’s openness has been a source of inspiration for women everywhere. And, her family is proof that surrogacy is a wonderful option to grow your family.
Hart of Dixie actress Jamie King had her fair share of challenges when she and her husband, Kyle Newman, tried to expand their family. Before becoming pregnant, Jamie went through five rounds of IVF, but unfortunately then suffered five miscarriages. She has confirmed that she and her husband unsuccessfully tried to conceive for over seven years. Eventually, the couple welcomed their son, James Knight, in 2014. Jamie quickly got pregnant for a second time, and gave birth to their second son in 2015.
Jamie took to Instagram after the birth of her fist son to share her experience. “For all the struggling women & moms out there that think they are alone – This is the truth about conceiving my son and struggles after 8 yrs of pain and undiagnosed PCOS & Endometriosis." The actress also added that her pregnancy and labour were especially painful as well as breastfeeding and mastitis post-birth. Luckily, the actress’ second pregnancy seemingly went smoother for her.
Lily Allen has went through a lot of heartbreak trying to expand her family. The popular British singer has struggled to carry multiple pregnancies to full term. In 2007, Lily announced she and her boyfriend of the time, Ed Simons, were expecting a baby. However, she ended up miscarrying in 2008, and their relationship fell through shortly afterwards. She later revealed she spent several weeks at a psychiatric clinic to treat depression following the miscarriage.
In 2010, Lily again announced she was expecting a boy, this time with her future husband, Sam Cooper. However, she experienced complications early on in the pregnancy. Finally, 6 months into her pregnancy, Lily contracted a viral infection that caused her to have a stillbirth. She has revealed she was devastated following her second unsuccessful pregnancy. Lily’s story does have a happy ending, though. She and her boyfriend married in 2011, and by the end of the year she welcomed their daughter, Ethel Mary. In 2013, the couple went on to have a second child, daughter Marnie Rose.
Of her stillbirth, Lily revealed to The Sun in 2014, ““[The stillbirth] was horrendous and something I would not wish on my worst enemy. It’s something that I still haven’t dealt with. I never will get over it. I have dealt with it, you know, as being at one with it. But it’s not something that you get over. I held my child and it was really horrific and painful — one of the hardest things that can happen to a person.”
During both of her marriages, Nicole Kidman struggled to get pregnant. For many years, she and her first husband, actor Tom Cruise, tried to get pregnant and the actress suffered through several miscarraiges. They eventually adopted two children, daughter Isabella in 1992, and son Connor in 1995, before parting ways in 2001.
Nicole later married country singer Keith Urban, and she once again tried to get pregnant. She ended up delivering her daughter, Sunday Rose, naturally in 2008. But the couple delivered their youngest daughter, Faith Margaret, via a surrogate.
When Nicole announced she and Keith would be using a surrogate, she released a statement, saying, “Our family is truly blessed, and just so thankful, to have been given the gift of baby Faith Margaret. No words can adequately convey the incredible gratitude that we feel for everyone who was so supportive throughout this process, in particular our gestational carrier.”
Sources: TodaysParent.com, MindBodyGreen.com, DailyMail.co.uk