Michelle Obama speaks openly about her past infertility problems. In her new book Becoming, and in a clip for an upcoming ABC special released on Good Morning America today, the former First Lady discussed a abortion . and In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) before she fathered her daughters.
Although dedicated to childbearing, Obama writes in her new memoir that she and her husband, former President Barack Obama, have had trouble getting pregnant. And when Obama got pregnant over two decades ago, she had a miscarriage.
"I felt lost and alone and I felt that I failed because I did not know how common miscarriages were," says Obama Robin Roberts, spokesman for ABC News in the 1965 clip.
How many people did not know how common their experiences of miscarriages were, "because we do not talk about them," says Obama. "We are in our own pain thinking we are somehow broken."
But she was able to conceive and give birth to the couple's two daughters, Malia (20) and Sasha (17), through IVF. "The biological clock is real because egg production is limited," she says in the clip. "And I realized that at 34 and 35 we had to do IVF."
She announced that she and Barack had entered into a marriage counseling session that helped her to realize how she could better take care of herself and become happier and asked for help when she needed it. "I know too many young couples who struggle and think something is wrong," she says. "And I want you to know that Michelle and Barack Obama, who have a phenomenal marriage and love each other, are working on our marriage and receiving help when we need it at our wedding."
The silence about miscarriages only adds It is therefore so important for the stigma that Obama speaks publicly about his experiences.
As SELF already wrote miscarriages – and fertility problems in general – are far more common than most people realize. It is estimated that between 10 and 25 percent of all pregnancies end in miscarriage. And depending on the underlying cause of the miscarriage, it's not uncommon for people to eventually need some kind of reproductive help.
But one miscarriage does not make you more likely to have another And even if you've gone through IVF at the end, is no guarantee that you'll never have children without it.
The most important thing, however, is to demystify these processes, the people who go by. They do not feel that something is wrong, or that they are alone. "The truth about our body and how it works and how it does not work," says Obama, is "the worst thing we do to ourselves as women."