Instagram was abuzz after Gabrielle Union and husband Dwayne Wade both posted a pictures sharing their newborn daughter with the world. It’s not a secret that she and her husband have had their own struggles trying to conceive. With several miscarriages and failed IVF attempts, they finally decided to go the route of using a surrogate.
The baby is the first child for Union, age 46, and the first that Wade shares with his wife. He has children from his previous marriage and a prior relationship. In Union’s book, ‘We’re Going to Need More Wine’, she opened up about her fertility struggles going through years of IVF treatments and admitting to having, in her words, “eight or nine miscarriages.”
Many women face fertility struggles and it seems there are more and more of stories like Union’s with women waiting until later in life to have children. Medical science says women reach peak fertility at age 28, but many are delaying childbirth because of career choices, education and marriage happening later in life. For some it’s by choice and for others it’s just by sheer circumstance. Tyra Banks is another example of a woman in the public eye who faced struggles trying to conceive and decided to make the decision to use a surrogate in order to have a child.
The fertility discussion is one that’s often left out when women are learning about their bodies, menstruation and overall health. It seems like it’s left out until they are actually in a position where they are faced with the reality they might not conceive. Then there’s a race against time to find a way to fulfill the dream of motherhood.
I think it’s important for women facing these experiences to speak openly about it so that they can share with those in younger generations. Being proactive is important, in case you’re faced with dismal options in the future. I think every young woman should learn about her options, including freezing her eggs in her twenties, in case she doesn’t find the right partner during her fertile years. This gives her the opportunity to still conceive much easier when she is older with a less heavy burden.
Have you or anyone you know faced fertility struggles?