At Propper Daley’s “A Day of Unreasonable Conversation” summit yesterday, Chrissy Teigen opened up about the loss of her child, Jack, in what she now realizes was a life-saving abortion. Teigen lost Jack 20 weeks into her pregnancy, when compounding complications made it clear that “he would not survive, and that I wouldn’t either without any medical intervention,” she explained.
“Let’s just call it what it was: It was an abortion,” Teigen said at the summit, according to The Hollywood Reporter. “An abortion to save my life for a baby that had absolutely no chance. And to be honest, I never ever put that together until, actually, a few months ago.”
Teigen went public about her and husband John Legend’s loss in September of 2020 in an Instagram post explaining that they “were never able to stop the bleeding and give our baby the fluids he needed, despite bags and bags of blood transfusions. It just wasn’t enough.” The post featured black and white photos of Teigen at the hospital, as well as photos of the couple holding Jack in his few brief moments of life.
Teigen told the summit that the realization came to her soon after the reversal of Roe v. Wade and that it was actually Legend who connected the dots for her. “I fell silent, feeling weird that I hadn’t made sense of it that way,” Teigen said.
“I told the world we had a miscarriage, the world agreed we had a miscarriage, all the headlines said it was a miscarriage. And I became really frustrated that I didn’t, in the first place, say what it was, and I felt silly that it had taken me over a year to actually understand that we had had an abortion.”
The cultural stigma around abortion—what it is, who seeks it out, why they might, and how they do so—has cloaked the often life-saving procedure in shame and misunderstanding. The world’s resounding agreement that Teigen had a miscarriage says as much: Abortions can’t be tragic, only miscarriages can be.
Celebrities being more vocal about their own abortion stories since Roe’s reversal—like Phoebe Bridgers, who took a quick trip to Planned Parenthood for the pill, or Hilarie Burton, who had an abortion amid infertility struggles—can help normalize the process and demonstrate the wide range of needs, reasons, and emotions around why abortion might be the best choice for someone at a given time. More accurate representations of abortion helps us put the right words to our experiences and move toward a world where they’re less taboo.
In early August, Teigen announced that she is pregnant once again after having undergone in vitro fertilization since February. We wish her nothing but happiness and good health.