Gabrielle Union has opened up about a series of devastating miscarriages as she spoke about her struggles to have a baby.
The 44-year-old US actress, who has been married to 36-year-old NBA player Dwayne Wade since 2014 and has no children, revealed her attempts to conceive in her new memoir We're Going to Need More Wine.
The Nebraska-born Hollywood star wrote about the hardships she's faced and failures with IVF treatments throughout her marriage to the sports star in the book set to be released on 17th October.
She wrote: "I have 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."
After three years of failed IVF cycles, Union admitted to feeling "bloated" from the hormones but remains "bursting with love and ready to do anything to meet the child we've both dreamed of".
Her real-life situation parallels her role in Being Mary Jane as Pauletta Patterson, a successful independent woman devoted to family who undergoes IVF treatment.
Union and Wade began dating in 2009 but briefly split in 2013 due to career demands. During that time, Wade had a baby son named Xavier with a longtime friend.
The couple reconciled, however, and became engaged in December 2013, just one month after Xavier's birth. Her first marriage was to another NBA player named Chris Howard who she was married to between 2001 and 2005. She also dated future NBA player Jason Kidd in high school.
It was after she walked down the aisle and helped raise Wade's boys – nephew Dahveon Morris, 16, and sons Zaire, 15, Zion, 10 from a previous marriage along with three-year-old Xavier – that she knew she wanted to be a mother.
She said: "I never wanted kids. Then I became a stepmom, and there was no place I'd rather be than with them."
Union's latest Instagram snap has been flooded with well wishers, as one of her 8.8m followers commented: "Just read the overview of your memoir and somethings brought me round to say this, don't give up on God, his timing is perfect, keep praying as much as you think about it, let go and let GOD, he's in control and watch your miracle happen. Stay blessed. ❤️"
Another put: "I just heard your story in #GMA, and I want you to know you're not alone in your struggle to get pregnant. Thank you for sharing your story. I am 40 years old and just completed my 5th cycle of IVF."