Martine McCutcheon has spoken out about her previous pregnancy struggles, revealing that she’s suffered through several miscarriages.
The Love Actually actress opened up on Loose Women during a discussion on older women having children, with the panel debating what age is ‘too old’ to become pregnant.
Martine has previously spoken about a miscarriage she suffered in 1999, soon after she left the cast of EastEnders.
‘One minute I was two months pregnant and going to be a mum. The next it was all over. I’m devastated. It’s so hard to deal with,’ she told the Mirror at the time.
Now, she’s revealed that it took her a while to have a child, for heartbreaking reasons.
‘I was in my late 30s when I had Rafferty and I tried for a long time to have him,’ she told the panel.
Martine also said that she’s worried about having had her son a bit later, as it means that they’ll have less years together.
‘I know that even as me at 40, I wish I could have had him earlier, because I know that whatever years I get, I know I’ll be cheated out of him.
‘I feel sad, that [older mums and their children] only have a certain amount of time together. When you have wanted a child for a while and it’s so precious to you… [but] I look at it from a very human emotional point of view of no one is ever going to be your mum again.’
Martine then went on to explain her miscarriage heartbreak for the first time in public.
‘I have lost babies. It was horrific every time. I didn’t have problems getting pregnant, I had problems keeping them,’ she said.
‘The minute that you have that baby you’re planning its little future and what you’re going to do with it, and you never sort of truly recover.’
Martine hasn’t been put off, and is open to having more children in the future – but not just yet.
‘I’d love to have another child undoubtedly but I kind of want to enjoy [Rafferty] – he’s not even two yet – and have this year with him… and then maybe me and Jack can be at it!’
Martine married singer Jack McManus in 2012, and the pair welcomed Rafferty in February 2015.
Martine’s battle with ME, a neurological condition which she described as ‘a virus in the computer of your body,’ also made her think she couldn’t be a mother. By getting frequent infections, her immune system dropped, and she often felt completely weak.
Martine previously told the Loose Women panel that becoming pregnant with Rafferty actually eased her ME.
‘It was like a reset. I still had to manage it. I can live a normal life now. I can commit to things. Most of all I’m healthy for my son.’
But now, the mum of one feels that the condition could have contributed to her miscarriages in the past.
‘Because of the ME I just wasn’t strong enough, and it was a really good radar for me to know that my body was strong by the time I had Rafferty,’ she said.
‘I knew I could hold a baby and I knew that in so many ways I would be better.’