According to multiple studies, about 10 to 20 percent of known pregnancies end in miscarriage. The actual number is likely higher since many miscarriages occur early in pregnancy when a woman doesn't even know she's expecting. Despite being such a common experience, conversations around miscarriages remain taboo, even in the 21st century.
However, many celebrities are now making efforts to normalise talking about miscarriages and reducing the stigma around it. Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, inspired many with her recent opinion piece for the New York Times titled "The Losses We Share," where she shared her and Prince Harry's heartbreak following her miscarriage in July.
The former actress noted that "losing a child means carrying an almost unbearable grief, experienced by many but talked about by a few." She recalled that after losing their child, she and her husband "discovered that in a room of 100 women, 10 to 20 of them will have suffered from a miscarriage."
"Yet despite the staggering commonality of this pain, the conversation remains taboo, riddled with (unwarranted) shame, and perpetuating a cycle of solitary mourning," she wrote.
Meghan Markle is not the only celebrity who has tried to change the way pregnancy loss is looked at in society. Chrissy Teigen, who lost her unborn baby in September this year, had shared her entire difficult pregnancy journey with her social media followers in real-time. The "Cravings" author even shared pictures from her hospital bed after losing her baby boy whom she and John Legend had named Jack.
Before Meghan, there was another British royal who openly spoke about the pain of having miscarriages. Zara Tindall, Queen Elizabeth II's eldest granddaughter, revealed in December 2016 that a pregnancy she and husband Mike Tindall announced the previous month had ended in a miscarriage. In an interview with the Sunday Times in 2018, the Olympian revealed that she had suffered two miscarriages since welcoming her daughter Mia in 2014. Zara and Mike are now parents to two-year-old daughter Lena as well.
Beyonce, who shares three children with husband Jay-Z, also revealed that her first pregnancy ended in a miscarriage. The Grammy-winner told Elle: "Having miscarriages taught me that I had to mother myself before I could be a mother to someone else. Then I had Blue, and the quest for my purpose became so much deeper."
Former US First Lady Michelle Obama admitted that the lack of conversations around miscarriages made her think it was rare and thus made her believe she was guilty of hers. The bestselling author told ABC News: "I felt lost and alone and I felt like I failed. I felt like I failed because I didn't know how common miscarriages were because we don't talk about them. We sit in our own pain, thinking that somehow we're broken."
There are several other celebrities who have spoken publicly about their pregnancy loss, actress Kate Beckinsale, influencers Arielle Charnas and Hilaria Baldwin, the Big Bang Theory's Melissa Rauch, musician Alanis Morissette, and former Bachelorette Ali Fedotowsky-Manno to name a few. Britain's Got Talent judge Amanda Holden, "Made in Chelsea" star Binky Felstead, "Goop" founder Gwyneth Paltrow, TV host Lorraine Kelly, "Loose Women" panelist Nadia Sawalha, and fashion stylist Trinny Woodall have also opened up about their miscarriages in the public.