Actor Christie Whelan Browne Encourages Young Women to Be Proactive About Their Reproductive Health
Christie Whelan Browne has encouraged young women to check their ovarian reserves so they can fully understand their reproductive choices. The Neighbours and The Wrong Girl actor and her musical theatre actor husband Rohan fell pregnant last month after three years of IVF.
Writing on Twitter yesterday, Christie explained that she had been taking the contraceptive pill for 15 years, including skipping periods, before she tried to get pregnant. "Never gave a thought to my reproductive organs & their functions until I was 35 & infertile," she said. "I now urge all young women (even if you don't know if you want kids) to get a simple AMH test & check your egg reserves✌🏻."
As IVF Australia explains, an AMH test checks for the Anti-Mullerian Hormone, a hormone secreted by cells in developing egg sacs. The simple blood test gives a good insight into the amount of eggs and fertile years a woman may have to conceive.
In August, Christie revealed that she was pregnant with a baby son. "We are beyond happy and excited. 💫," she wrote of her "miracle" baby on Twitter.
In a lengthy post to Instagram, which featured the many positive pregnancy tests she took to confirm the good news, Christie thanked people for supporting her and Rohan through their experience of IVF and noted the "painful failed cycles" they had endured.
"I send my love and hugs to those who are reading this who are still struggling through the very hard journey," she continued. "The shame around infertility is just so palpable. My best friend said to me 'but shame is usually reserved for things you have done wrong' and I always tried to remind myself that this was not because of anything I did wrong, or that Rohan did wrong. And it's not something YOU are doing wrong.
"A lot of the time in the 3 years we tried to get pregnant people would say really unhelpful things like 'you need to stop thinking about it' and 'you need to be really positive about it' so not only was my body failing me; but I was asking my mind to ignore the fact that we had been told we had a 1 percent chance of conceiving naturally, and be positive about it anyway.
"The best thing I took away from all those painful months? That 'hope' is something that lives inside us even when we think it's gone. It's the reason we live, because hope always remains. It's never lost, even when you can't hear it. Whether 'hope' leads to a baby, or another journey that fills your heart. HOPE — it's the silent angel that makes the heart beat. 💗🤞🏻"
Hopefully Christie's candour about her experience can help give some women a kind of solace through their own journeys. And it's a good reminder for us all to be more proactive about our reproductive health!
Scroll on to see updates from Christie and Rohan's pregnancy journey: