When a woman with a profile stands up and reveals she has battled the same war as you and people listen, the impact can be profound.
The road to becoming a parent is not always easy. When we are young, if we want children in our future, we assume it will just happen one day. When it does not happen, the fight to have a baby can be fraught with so many obstacles that we feel we have to battle alone and in silence.
Huffington Post recently compiled an inspiring list of famous women who, by speaking openly about their infertility, have helped to remove the stigma plaguing others desperate to complete their family – including me.
And we’ve added to the list at Babyology with our own homegrown celebrities who turned to IVF to have a baby.
There are so many causes behind infertility and sometimes no exact reason can be found. And, despite amazing similarities in their fertility issues, no two women are the same and so treatments and paths to parenthood are varied and complex. A growing number of couples are opting for in vitro fertilization (IVF), while others turn to surrogacy or adoption.
These celebrities show no matter how famous or successful you are, infertility is a very real and raw challenge to try and overcome.
Actress Ada Nicodemou turned to IVF after a year of trying to fall pregnant. It worked and she gave birth to son Johnas in 2012. Two years later the Home and Away star fell pregnant naturally but sadly her second son Harrison was delivered stillborn in 2014.
News presenter Deborah Knight has also battled infertility to become a mum. After eight IVF cycles she welcomed daughter Darcy in 2010 and then Elsa in 2011. A natural surprise followed early this year when she welcomed another daughter, Audrey.
Television presenter Sonia Kruger has been commended for being one of a few famous women to admit to using donor eggs in the quest to become a mother. Starting the IVF process at 45, she had little success with her own eggs but welcomed her daughter Maggie last year with an egg donated by a close friend.
News presenter Jessica Rowe has not only been open about her struggle to conceive but also her battle with postnatal depression. Her first daughter, Allegra was born in 2007 after being conceived by IVF. She welcomed a natural surprise when second daughter Giselle was born in 2009.
News reader and author Tracey Spicer has spoken openly about her fertility troubles in her early 30s. After two years of trying to fall pregnant naturally she turned to IVF. In 2005 it proved successful and she gave birth to her son Taj before finding she was expecting again just eight months later. Her daughter Grace was conceived naturally, and was born in 2006.
After being told at 40 she couldn’t conceive naturally due to blocked fallopian tubes, comedian Mary Coustas underwent IVF. In total Mary did 23 rounds of IVF. She experienced miscarriages and the loss of her first daughter Stevie, who was stillborn, in 2011 before finally welcoming daughter Jamie in 2013.
As a reality television star Khloe Kardashian has spoken openly about many things, including her struggle to fall pregnant due to the fact her body does not ovulate and her uterine lining is too thin to carry a baby.
Television presenter Chrissy Teigen and her husband singer John Legend welcomed their daughter Luna in April. She was conceived via IVF and Teigen copped criticism when she revealed they chose the sex of their baby before implantation.
Hugh Jackman and Deborah-Lee Furness
Actor Hugh Jackman and his wife Deborra-Lee Furness tried IVF twice, but both cycles ended in miscarriage. Eventually the couple adopted two children in the US, a newborn boy Oscar in 2000 and a newborn girl Ava in 2005.
Actress Nia Vardalos and her husband Ian Gomez struggled with infertility for nine years, with 13 failed IVF treatments, miscarriages and no luck with a surrogate. Adopting a three-year-old girl, Ilaria, in 2013 is what inspired her book Instant Mom.
Actress Elizabeth Banks struggled with fertility as embryos would not implant in her womb. She now has two sons, Felix and Magnus, who were born with the help of a surrogate in 2011 and 2012.
Actress Courtney Cox had several miscarriages before doctors found out she carried a rare antibody in her blood, which prevented her pregnancies from reaching full term. It took two IVF cycles before she conceived her daughter Coco.
Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban
Actress Nicole Kidman has spoken of her many attempts to try and conceive with fertility treatments. With ex-husband Tom Cruise, she has two adopted children, Bella and Connor. With current husband Keith Urban she has one daughter, Sunday Rose, who she gave birth to in 2008 and another, Faith Margaret, carried by a surrogate and born in 2011.
Sarah Jessica Parker
Actress Sarah Jessica Parker and her husband Matthew Broderick have three children. While she gave birth to their oldest, James, in 2002, their twin daughters, Marion and Tabitha, were born via a surrogate in 2009.
Actress Brooke Shields wrote about her infertility and depression in her book Down Came The Rain. After many IVF attempts and miscarriages she finally gave birth to her daughter Rowan in 2003. She then fell pregnant again without help and gave birth to her second daughter Grier in 2006.
Singer Celine Dion and her late husband René Angélil did IVF seven times in order to conceive their three children. Their son René Charles was born in 2001 and then twin boys, Nelson and Eddy, were born in 2010. The final pregnancy was triplets but one of the babies sadly died in utero.
It is amazing to think of the avenues now open to help those needing help to achieve their parenthood dreams. Now more and more women in their 30s are even using IVF to have children on their own.
(via Huffington Post)