Lisa Faulkner has said her IVF doctor let her go because she was ‘drained’ and ‘at the end’.
The 48-year-old struggled to conceive in her 30s, with one pregnancy resulting in an ectopic pregnancy, and took the fertility pill Clomid to improve her chances.
But after three gruelling rounds of IVF, Lisa was told to give up on the treatment, as she was no longer ‘presenting as a normal person’.
The chef and actress, who is married to MasterChef’s John Torode, spoke about her journey to motherhood on Magic Radio’s The F Word, and discussed the difficulties of dealing with infertility.
Faulkner said: ‘I think I always thought it was just going to be really easy. Got pregnant, so so excited and then a couple of weeks later I was rushed into hospital with an ectopic pregnancy.
‘You know, you need to get better because you need to try and get pregnant again. And so as well as the grief of losing my baby, because it was my baby for those 10 days, it was my baby, I was then in this thing of I’m on a rat race, I’ve got… I’m in the hamster wheel and I’ve got to get pregnant really quickly, even though I’ve got to grieve the loss of this little love.’
While Lisa was married to her first husband Chris Coghill, they decided to turn to IVF to have a child, but after two years of the treatment, they did not conceive,
The Spooks star said: ‘There was a waiting list and, yes, it was free and it was on the NHS but the clock that was ticking was going, oh, no, no, no, this is going way too slow, I need to find out how I can do it privately. I need to pay for this because that clock’s really speeding up.’
Addressing her IVF doctor letting her go after three rounds, she said: ‘He said, because, Lisa, I could see you were at the end.
‘I said, well, what could you see? Because I thought I was presenting as a really normal person and he said, you were not. He said, you were drained.’
Lisa and Chris eventually gave up entirely on fertility treatment and decided to turn to adoption, adopting their daughter Billie in 2008 when she was 18 months old.
Faulkner said: ‘I did look into everything. I looked into American adoption, American surrogacy before we settled on adoption and it was my ex-husband who said to me, you could have told me you were pregnant. I could go away on a film set. I’d be away for seven months. I could not have seen you, felt that baby, whatever, you would put it in my arms and I would love it. So, what would be the difference of holding a baby that wasn’t genetically mine? I don’t understand the difference. I don’t know why we haven’t thought of it before.
‘I realised my nieces and my nephew I love like they’re my own. I love my friends, I love my husband, I love my ex-husband. Do you know what I mean? All of those people in your life that you love fiercely, why can’t you love a child that’s not genetically yours?’
Now, Lisa is also a stepmother to John’s four children Casper, Lulu, Jonah and Marselle, who he has from two previous relationships, and admitted that it can be ‘challenging’.
She said: ‘It’s challenging and you have to bend and stretch and compromise and breathe and cry and be angry and be sad and be happy and hold each other.’
Lisa and John, 55, tied the knot in October 2019 after seven years of dating, with the couple meeting on Celebrity MasterChef in 2010.
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