Helena Bonham Carter shares her fertility struggle
Actress Helena Bonham Carter, 41, is currently seven months pregnant with her second child by director Tim Burton, 49. The couple, who have a four-year-old son Billy-Ray, knew that they wanted more children, but didn’t know the struggle that awaited them.
Click below to learn about the fertility problems that the couple experienced as well as Helena’s favorite foods and listening therapy.
Helena and Tim started trying to get pregnant two years ago, but nothing was happening. The actress was told she may not be ovulating so she began to take the fertility drug Clomid, but things didn’t go as planned. Helena is not happy that she was not told of potential side-effects.
I had a terrible reaction to it. Many people think it is the only thing that’s going to make them ovulate, but as it turned out I was ovulating anyway. It stressed me out beyond belief. Hormonally, I was all over the shop and I got really low emotionally. Lots of people don’t have that reaction, but on the internet I found a Clomid Club, with people who react to the stuff discussing it online.
After her problems with Clomid, Helena switched to trying more natural methods.
I tried acupuncture two years ago. I went to the Chinese acupuncturist in Belsize Park. Dr Deng, who practices there, is brilliant, and has helped so many local people. She kept saying that I was ‘too weak, too weak’, and gave me several types of tea to help build my strength up.
Pregnancy still was not happening, so Helena and Tim sat down and started to discuss in vitro fertilization.
Obviously, you don’t know what you’d do unless you were actually in that situation. I think we might have gone for a round of IVF, but that would have been that. There was an argument for just having one child, because we thought if that’s the way it’s meant to be, so be it.
As it turns out, the couple didn’t need to undergo IVF. Helena found out that she was pregnant while working on the musical Sweeney Todd.
I was working so hard at the time. The first three months being pregnant while filming, I felt totally spaced out. You do need to multi-task with acting. You’ve got to remember your marks, your lines, singing, everything, and actually –- you have no brain! Suddenly your own brain is growing another person’s brain, so yours goes defunct. It wasn’t ideal, but then I was so happy to be pregnant.
When Helena was pregnant with her son Billy she underwent what is called listening therapy and will soon begin that again with this pregnancy. Listening therapy is used to help pregnant women relax before giving birth and alert, relaxed, physically toned babies.
That was absolutely the case for me with Billy. Billy was able to hold his head up at a very early stage, he was very laid-back, and although I love chubby babies, Billy has always been physically toned. I really think listening therapy might have helped a lot. The birth wasn’t drama-free, but I felt very relaxed.
Helena, who is a fan of homeopathy, would have liked to have had a natural birth with son Billy, but when it was all and said and done, the pain won out.
When it came to it, I just went for an epidural.
A fan of sushi and carpaccio, Helena has had to cut back due to her pregnancy and is now a fan of peppermint tea and goji berries.
One of my favorite dishes is carpaccio and I love sushi, but I’ve avoided them during this pregnancy. Obviously anything with raw eggs is forbidden, too. I don’t drink caffeine as much as I would normally and try to restrict myself to one cup of coffee a day.
Source: The Daily Telegraph