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Katherine Ryan praises Meghan Markle as she speaks about her own miscarriage


When Meghan Markle and model Chrissy Teigen opened up about their devastating pregnancy losses last year, comedian Katherine Ryan was among many women to appreciate their honest words.

The 37-year-old suffered her own loss at ten weeks in early 2020, admitting afterwards how lonely the experience was, and the “shame” she felt for allowing herself to get excited for her new baby.

She says Meghan and Chrissy made her feel “hopeful”, although sadly admits she will never feel the same joyful naivety again in pregnancy that she did when carrying her first daughter Violet, 11.

She says: “By the time Chrissy Teigen and Meghan Markle came out and shared their stories I had dealt with my own experience, but I definitely felt very hopeful and encouraged because I know they reach so many families.



Katherine experience a miscarriage at 10 weeks in 2020

“That conversation is evolving and I’m so glad to see it evolving. Ultimately it’s for the best and it will help a lot of people, especially when they’re still going to scans alone.

“When you’re pregnant for the first time – I would hate to burst women’s bubble, to take that naivety away from them – it can be so joyful. At 25 years old with my daughter I hadn’t considered anything bad might happen to me, I went through my pregnancy ‘Lalala’ and that’s a wonderful feeling.

“But once you experience a loss like that I don’t think you ever feel the same way with a pregnancy.”

Canadian comedian Katherine’s silent miscarriage was revealed last February at a routine scan, when a heartbeat wasn’t found. But it took weeks before she finally lost her baby.

In the meantime she bravely carried on working, even performing on stage immediately after the news, but she has admitted she “felt like a walking tomb”.



The comedian and her husband, Bobby Kootstra, were teenage sweethearts and married in September 2019

The devastating news came just months after she and husband Bobby Kootstra, her teenage sweetheart, married in September 2019 after reuniting for the first time in 20 years while Katherine was visiting Canada to film for the BBC show Who Do You Think You Are.

The tragedy, followed swiftly by the start of the pandemic, was a huge shock to their new relationship, but she says it has ultimately strengthened it.

“Bobby and I were full speed ahead, met again, got married, got pregnant straight away… But it was really positive for our relationship, which sounds funny to say,” she says.

“The way I watched Bobby deal with his own grief, but also be very caring towards me and the way he tried to look after everyone, I was really moved by that and it gave me more respect for him.

“I think definitely with that and then the pandemic I feel we have been together a lot longer than we have actually been.”



Meghan Markle also revealed the heartbreak of losing a baby last year

Talking from her Hertfordshire home in a jumper knitted with rainbow colours, Katherine is certainly sunnier and more serene than her on-stage or screen persona.

She is also, she admits with a laugh, way more prudish.

She struggled with intimate scenes in her new Netflix sitcom The Duchess, and is ready to run a mile from ‘the talk’ with her tween-age daughter.

“I’m open with her about most things, but sex is not one of the things I’m open with her about!” she admits.

“I think people assume because of my work I’m very sexually liberated, but – I have learned working on The Duchess! – I’m not. I’m quite vanilla. I probably would be the more embarrassed one!

“If she asks me anything medical I will tell her. There are other things we talk about in regards to autonomy and empowerment, it’s just actual mechanics…No.”

Her aversion to sex scenes has, she admits, also put her off more serious acting projects.

“I think it’s very weird to be creeping round pretending to be someone else, I have always felt actors make me very uneasy, more so having acted myself,” she says.

“It’s like being a spy, especially sex scenes…now I have had to do intimate scenes and crying scenes I feel some acting is too intense for me.

“I would always love to do comedy roles, but with all my clothes on.

“The Duchess was a heightened version of my stage persona. But you won’t be seeing me on The Crown – I don’t think they had lip filler back then anyway!”



Katherine admits that she’d hate to be a serious actor

As we enter a second lockdown, the star is filling her time with writing for future projects, while braced for homeschooling and more time than ever with Bobby and Violet, admitting “conversation is at a critical low!”

But as positive as her jumper, she’s ready to embrace the upsides of Covid-19.

“I love wearing a mask,” she says. “I felt I got recognised when I went out, but now there’s freedom for me – I think the mask is total freedom. I’ve been wearing a mask since March 1, I’ve been on it.”

  • Katherine Ryan is working with Walkers Oven Baked to encourage people to make New Year’s resolutions they can stick to, including small, sustainable changes, such as swapping your regular crisps for Walkers Oven Baked – all the flavour and half the fat of regular crisps.





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