The journey to becoming a parent isn’t always an easy one and, according to Us Weekly, Hollywood’s newest parents know that all too well. The outlet reported that Cameron Diaz and Benji Madden used a surrogate to welcome their newborn daughter Raddix after trying to conceive for five years. Diaz and Madden surprised fans last week when they made the unexpected announcement of their baby girl’s birth. And it goes without saying that — no matter how sweet Raddix made her way into the world — she’s a blessing to the new mom and dad.
Diaz and Madden, who were similarly private about their 2015 marriage, shared with fans on January 3 that Raddix had arrived. And although they gushed about the fact their daughter is “really, really cute,” they (understandably) noted that they wouldn’t be sharing any pictures or information about the little girl. However, citing an unnamed source allegedly close to Diaz, Us Weekly reports that the couple endured a lot to grow their family. “They went through so much to get to this point,” the source was quoted as saying. “Cameron feels like this baby is truly a miracle.”
Us Weekly had previously reported that Diaz and Madden’s journey also included eastern medicine such as acupuncture and supplements.
Of course, we’d be remiss not to underscore that whether a child is conceived and delivered through a surrogate, via c-section, or by adoption is effectively semantics. A parent is a parent is a parent. But the conversation is important culturally because surrogacy is for many parents (like Diaz, if the reports are accurate) the vital link that bridges the gap between infertility and parenthood.
Dr. Sherry A. Ross — women’s health expert and author of she-logy. the she-quel, out Feb. 2020 — explained that the likelihood of conceiving naturally is minuscule in your mid-to-late 40s like Diaz, who is 47.
“Women over the age of 45 have a less than 1 percent chance of getting pregnant each month,” Dr. Ross tells SheKnows. She also emphasized that the nature of celebrity media can lead to people drawing painful comparisons. “If you pick up a People magazine or tune into Entertainment Tonight, it highlights women giving birth to a child or set of twins at any age, especially those women over the age of 44. This can be incredibly misleading and create unrealistic expectations for adoring fans since it does not explain the low odds of having your own biological child or how expensive and time consuming it can be to use fertility magic to have a child after age 40.”
Enter, surrogacy and why the dialogue surrounding it is relevant.
“Donor egg is secretly popular in anyone who gets pregnant after the age of 44 years, especially if they are having twins,” Dr. Ross says. “Alternatively, women are getting smarter about planning future fertility and freezing their eggs before their biological clock breaks. Women who freeze their eggs under 40 years old can defrost the healthy ones and use them at any age.”
That’s not to say conceiving naturally at Diaz’s age is impossible, and reports of surrogacy remain unconfirmed by Diaz and Madden. Also unconfirmed? Another source’s claim that the couple doesn’t plan to hire a nanny for a heartwarming reason. “Cameron wants to spend every second with the baby,” the insider told People.