11 Celebrity Miscarriages: Strong Women Open Up - Baby Chick
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11 Celebrity Miscarriages: Strong Women Open Up

Celebrity miscarriages: the truth and how it's normalizing the conversation. Learn why 10%-20% of pregnancies end in miscarriage.

Published March 30, 2023
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For generations, women enduring the mental and physical pain of miscarriage suffered alone, in silence. Even though their friends, neighbors, and family members were often experiencing the same heartbreaking loss, it wasn’t discussed. And because miscarriage was kept hidden, a sense of shame surrounded it, sending the false message to mothers that somehow losing the pregnancy was their fault. Thankfully, that has changed as more women are normalizing talking about their pregnancy losses so others feel less alone, and we’re hearing more about celebrity miscarriages.

Miscarriage Rates Remain High

Despite medical advances and the development of far better prenatal care today than in the past, the chance of miscarriage remains high even today.

According to the Mayo Clinic, about 10 to 20 percent of known pregnancies end in miscarriage. However, it says the actual number is likely higher because many occur before someone might even know they’re pregnant. The March of Dimes concurs, saying research suggests more than 30 percent of pregnancies end in miscarriage, and many end before a person even knows they’re pregnant.”1,2

That’s a lot of pregnancies and women who, rather than feeling ashamed and sitting alone in their grief, decide to be open and tell their stories. And many of those women happen to be celebrities — because, like all painful life experiences, miscarriages don’t discriminate. Pregnancy loss happens to women of all races, ethnicities, income levels, and job titles.

But reading about celebrity miscarriages of famous women we idolize — like Meghan Markle, Pink, and Beyoncé — and learning they’ve endured the same gut-wrenching grief many of us have can often help women in their healing process. And for that, we appreciate the honesty of these very strong, but also very vulnerable, celebrity women.

11 Celebrity Miscarriages

1. Chrissy Teigen

 

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One of the most recent and heartbreaking celebrity miscarriages, we all remember the anguish on Chrissy Teigen’s and John Legend’s faces as they shared the horrific news that they’d lost baby Jack. Weeks after their loss, Teigen opened up in an emotional essay about what happened.3 She’d had a partial placenta abruption and was bleeding so severely that she’d had several blood transfusions. Doctors tried everything to save baby Jack, but at some point, she says, “My doctor told me exactly what I knew was coming — it was time to say goodbye. He just wouldn’t survive this, and if it went on any longer, I might not either.”

Tragically, at that point, Chrissy, John, and their team of doctors were forced to end the pregnancy, knowing Jack would not live and Chrissy’s life was in danger.

Despite criticisms that the couple decided to publicize such a “private” moment, they also received overwhelming love and support. “The moments of kindness have been nothing short of beautiful,” she wrote. “I went to a store where the checkout lady quietly added flowers to my cart. Sometimes people will approach me with a note. The worst part is knowing so many women won’t get these quiet moments of joy from strangers. I beg you to please share your stories and to please be kind to those pouring their hearts out. Be kind in general, as some won’t pour them out at all.”

Since Chrissy Teigen’s miscarriage, she has had another baby, a girl named Esti, who was born in January.

 

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2. Meghan Markle

Also among the celebrity miscarriage group, Meghan Markle shocked the world when her New York Times essay “The Losses We Share” was published in November 2020.5 “Losing a child means carrying an almost unbearable grief, experienced by many but talked about by few,” Markle says.

She describes the day she lost her pregnancy as “any other day” — she made breakfast, fed the dogs, and found a missing sock. She felt a sharp cramp that brought her to her knees while she held Archie, singing a lullaby to keep them both calm.

“I knew, as I clutched my firstborn child, that I was losing my second,” she adds.

Markle has also allowed the world into another struggle she had related to pregnancy — her mental health struggles. It is these life experiences — miscarriage, depression — that continue to motivate the now mother of two to tell her story and advocate for women everywhere.

Since Meghan Markle’s miscarriage, she is now the proud mom of two adorable kids — Archie and Lilibet.

3. Pink

Singer/songwriter Pink has always expressed herself through her lyrics as a songwriter, telling the world of her struggles. Whether it was her painful relationship with her father, rocky times in her marriage, or her ballad “Happy,” she sings, “Since I was 17, I’ve always hated my body / And it feels like my body’s hated me.” In a 2019 interview with USA Today, she revealed some truths behind those lyrics: The superstar celebrity had a miscarriage at 17. And she experienced several more on her journey to motherhood.5

“When that happens to a woman or a young girl, you feel like your body hates you and like your body is broken, and it’s not doing what it’s supposed to do,” Pink said in that 2019 interview with USA Today. “I’ve had several miscarriages since, so I think it’s important to talk about what you’re ashamed of, who you really are, and the painful (expletive). I’ve always written that way.”

Pink and her husband, Carey Hart, are now busy parents to two kids growing up fast — Willow and Jameson.

4. Beyoncé

Powerhouse couple Beyoncé and Jay-Z and their three beautiful children, Blue Ivy, Rumi, and Sir, seem to have it all. But like any other family, they have had their fair share of heartbreak. A 2013 documentary discusses Beyonce’s miscarriage, and she said the loss was “the saddest thing I’ve ever been through.”6

And her story is a lot like that of her fans — one day, there’s a heartbeat, and the next, there’s not.

“I was pregnant for the first time,” Beyoncé explains. “And I heard the heartbeat, which was the most beautiful music I ever heard in my life… Being pregnant was very much like falling in love. You are so open. You are so overjoyed. There’s no words that can express having a baby growing inside of you, so, of course, you want to scream it out and tell everyone.”

But sadly, she did not get to share the news with everyone as she’d hoped. “I flew back to New York to get my check-up – and no heartbeat. Literally, the week before I went to the doctor, everything was fine, but there was no heartbeat,” she said.

Her husband Jay-Z alludes to other challenges in starting a family with his lyrics to “Glory,” released right after Blue Ivy was born. “Last time the miscarriage was so tragic / We was afraid you disappeared but nah baby, you magic.” And the song also includes this line: “False alarms and false starts / All made better by the sound of your heart / All the pain of the last time / I prayed so hard it was the last time,” sharing with the world that this famous couple’s path to parenthood was not an easy one.

5. Michelle Obama

Another powerful, leading woman, Michelle Obama, opened up in her book “Becoming” about her and former President Obama’s fertility struggles and how the process often left her feeling alone and hopeless.7

“We were trying to get pregnant and it wasn’t going well,” the former first lady writes. “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 goes on to explain that, in her mid-30s, she felt the familiar pressure of that “biological clock ticking” and turned to fertility treatments, a journey she took on mainly on her own. Giving herself hormone shots while her husband worked long hours at the state legislature meant Michelle was “largely on my own to manipulate my reproductive system into peak efficiency.”

We know that after Michelle Obama’s miscarriage, the couple eventually had two beautiful daughters, despite their challenging road to parenthood.

6. Lily Allen

Singer-songwriter Lily Allen has shared that she’ll probably never fully recover from losing her child in 2010.8 Her pregnancy tragically ended at six months with a stillbirth, leading to severe depression.

“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,” Allen said in an interview.

However, the rainbow came after the storm, and Lily and her husband, Sam Cooper, welcomed their first child after losing their son in 2010. “I just think that he’s a part of my eldest, really,” she explains. “If he hadn’t died, it wouldn’t have physically been possible for our eldest to be alive because I got pregnant with her so quickly. We’ve got a little stone in our garden with his name on it. And lots of different things that I do, rituals, I have him in my mind. My husband and I shared this horrible thing together but it kind of brought us closer.”

7. Gabrielle Union

In her book, “We’re Going to Need More Wine,” actress Gabrielle Union shares, “I’ve had eight or nine miscarriages. … 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.”9

Although Union did eventually become a mom to daughter Kaavia via surrogacy, her journey with miscarriage and infertility was a long one riddled with heartache. And it is because of these challenges that Union tries to dissuade people from asking about another woman’s journey to motherhood, as they may not know what she’s going through.

For many women, not just women in the spotlight, people feel entitled to know, “‘Do you want kids?'” she explains. “A lot of people, especially people that have fertility issues, just say ‘no’ because that’s a lot easier than being honest about whatever is actually going on. People mean so well, but they have no idea the harm or frustration it can cause.”10

8. Nicole Kidman

Nicole Kidman has also been open about her miscarriage, like many other celebrity miscarriages, and an ectopic pregnancy while she was married to Tom Cruise.

“I know the yearning. That yearning. It’s a huge, aching yearning. And the loss! The loss of a miscarriage is not talked about enough,” Nicole said in an interview, as reported by Women’s Health. “That’s massive grief to certain women.”11

In a Marie Claire interview, she also said, “It was incredibly traumatic for me. Sometimes you share your grief.”12

The actress eventually became a mom, however, adopting Isabella and Connor while married to now former husband Tom Cruise and having both Sunday Rose and Faith (via surrogacy) with husband Keith Urban.

9. Halsey

Singer-songwriter Halsey shared on an episode of “The Doctors” that they found out they were pregnant on one of their tours but soon lost the pregnancy.13

“Before I could really figure out what that meant to me and what that meant for my future… the next thing I knew, I was on stage miscarrying in the middle of my concert,” Halsey describes.

Beyond Halsey’s miscarriage, the singer also has been open about their struggles with endometriosis and how she finally sought treatment for the disease. “The sensation of looking a couple hundred teenagers in the face while you’re bleeding through your clothes and still having to do the show, and realizing in that moment… I never want to make that choice ever again of doing what I love or not being able to because of this disease,” Halsey says. Halsey is now a doting mom, having welcomed their baby Ender with boyfriend Alev Aydin in the summer of 2021.

 

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10. Jana Kramer

Another celebrity miscarriage announcement that broke hearts was country singer Jana Kramer telling the world in 2017 that she had suffered a miscarriage. Sadly, it wasn’t her first. And the singer wanted to share her story rather than suffer in silence as women did for so long.14

“1-3,” Kramer writes. “Today I am 1-3. I don’t want I’m sorry or sympathy. I just don’t want to feel alone. And I know I’m not. This, unfortunately, isn’t my first loss. When I first found out I was pregnant, I wanted to shout it from the rooftop, but I know for reasons like this we have to wait. So because we don’t tell many, we have to suffer silently…and suffering silently was my thing in the past, but it’s not now.”

Two years later, she penned another poignant post on IG, this one, however, with news of a rainbow after the rain.15

“A year ago today, I got the news that I had yet again another miscarriage. It was after an IVF cycle. The embryo was a boy and it was the last embryo we had,” Kramer says.

“I was devastated. I felt like I failed as a woman, and as a wife. IVF wasn’t an option again because it’s too expensive, so I felt defeated.”

But she eventually went on to have baby Jace, to whom the post is dedicated, adding, “So I prayed. Boy did I pray for you.” And Kramer also explained why she has chosen to share her journey with the world — to make other women know they aren’t alone. “I know nothing I say will make the yearning or pain any better, but if anything, know you’re not alone and that I was in the same spot a year ago,” she says.

11. Shawn Johnson

Gymnast Shawn Johnson admits that, like many women, she blamed herself after losing her pregnancy in 2017.16

“I had struggled so long with eating disorders, I had taken excessive amounts of Adderall and I had taken weight loss pills,” Johnson explains. “I had abused my body for so long that my worst fear going through all of that back then was, ‘Am I going to do permanent damage to my body?’ And I didn’t have a period for years and I had truly done harm.”

Women’s Health also reports that despite her doctor telling her the miscarriage wasn’t her fault, Johnson said to herself, “It probably is.” And those intrusive thoughts of self-blame, that mindset, is something many women can relate to.

“If I could go back to that doctor’s office, I was trying so hard to keep it together but I was breaking inside because in my mind, just as a mom, you have all of these guilts and these fears,” she says. “I was like, ‘Is my body not made to have children? Did I abuse it so much that it can’t carry a child? Is this God’s way of telling me I’m not meant to be a mom?'”

Shawn eventually went on to have two babies, a daughter, Drew, and a son, Jett.

 

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Women Are No Longer Alone

These 11 celebrity miscarriages are vastly different stories — some pregnancies were unexpected, some planned. Some celebrity miscarriages came as a shock. Others came with fair warning due to health issues. But they all chose to share their stories so other women — rich and famous or not —would know they aren’t alone in their pain. Miscarriage is no longer something women must suffer in silence. Today, we tell our stories because in helping others, we help ourselves heal.

And that is the village all mothers need.

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Karen Johnson is a busy mom of three who is probably driving a child to practice or a game right now. She writes about all things parenthood. Read more

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