Is Infertility The New Frontier For Celebrity Gossip Coverage?
For years now, celebrity pregnancy has been a growing business. Minor celebrities use their baby bumps to gain press coverage and positive PR. Major celebrities try to hind their bumps until just the right moment for the big reveal. (We all know Beyonce started a trend. I can’t wait til this year’s Oscars include an “I’m pregnant” acceptance speech.) And the unluckiest celebrities get to deal with tabloids and celeb sites constantly guessing whether or not they’re pregnant. Everywhere female celebrities go, babies are an ever-growing issue.
It only makes sense, now that we have websites devoted to celebrities and their spawn, for trendsetters to take fertility coverage to a whole new level. Just like pregnancy used to be a private affair, a small group of ladies are leading the way in conception and infertility tabloid coverage. That’s right, pretty soon it won’t be enough for Jessica Biel to be pregnant, we’re going to have to start guessing how long she’s been trying and if she’s had any “work” done to get that uterus ready for it’s big debut.
Think I’m over exaggerating? Mere weeks after Kate Middleton married Prince William, tabloids started splashing their “inside scoops” about her reproductive system all over their cover pages. Shania Twain also had to face down reports from unnamed sources that she was struggling with infertility. And in typical D-List fashion, a Kardashian is using what most people consider to be a personal, sensitive issue to gain a little tabloid time.
Listen, as a woman struggling with infertility, I appreciate when someone discusses it in an honest and open fashion. I enjoy when people use their experience to generate conversation and increase awareness. But at the same time, Khloe Kardashian’s repeated discussions about peeing on sticks and the difficulty of conception seem forced and insincere. Their sound bites of infertility, not an actual discussion. They come around once a month and they land on US Weekly‘s homepage. Then they get traded out for Jessica Simpson’s unconfirmed pregnancy cravings.
I encourage anyone who wants to share their struggles with infertility to do so. But I hope that pregnancy problems don’t become as ubiquitous in celebrity gossip coverage as those baby bumps are. While it’s an issue that needs support and acknowledgement, it’s not something that should be hinted at or guessed about, with arrows and question marks pointing to a woman’s womb. It shouldn’t be a marketing tool used to catch a few headlines. Infertility shouldn’t be hushed up and ignored, but I dread it being used as a gossip fodder as well. Hopefully, there’s a respectable middle-of-the-road in there somewhere.