Monday, November 08, 2010

The Guardian's Interview with Lily Allen

The singer Lily Allen suffered recently what all the newspapers have described as "a miscarriage" at six months of pregnancy. She had previously suffered another one, whilst four months pregnant.

Today The Guardian - - widely considered to be one of Britain's more reputable newspapers - published this interview with her, which took place ten days before she lost the baby.

I think that publishing this piece was a vile thing to do. It's all about her hopes and plans for the future, and the headline is "I go through a major life change once a year". So, presumably we are supposed to think - - "how ironic that she should say that - - and then lose the baby! Amazing!"

It's a horrible piece of journalism and should never have been published now.

Not one of the articles that I've seen about it has described this loss as anything other than "a miscarriage".

My first baby was born at six months of pregnancy, in 1984. He lived for three weeks.

A baby born at six months' gestation is not like a miscarriage in early pregnancy - and I've had one of those too, and they are traumatic enough.

A baby born at six months' gestation looks just like a full-term baby, but smaller. Ours had fingers, and toes, and blue eyes, and lots of blond curly hair. Many babies born at this age, with the help of modern medicine, have survived.

Perhaps the technical, medical term is "foetus" but the parents' term is "baby" and you'd have thought that at least some of those thick, insensitive journalists would have thought of that.

My heart goes out to Lily Allen, and to her partner. What they are facing is the loss of a baby. And at six months, they will already have imagined much of the baby's future, and their future, too. They will have thought of the baby learning to speak, and to walk, and going to nursery school, and big school, and all grown up with a partner - -

Shame on The Guardian for publishing the piece. They have issued a rather half-hearted statement on Twitter saying that Lily Allen's PR agreed to it.

So what. I don't care who agreed to it. The Guardian should have had more sense, and more sensitivity, and used their own judgement and pulled the entire interview.


Blogger Yorkshire Pudding said...

It's so sad when anyone loses a baby they have yearned for. I don't much care for the cult of celebrity but in Lily Allen's case I will make an exception and say that I hope her next pregnancy runs its course, leading her to the kind of joy that only a new baby can provide. When you strip away all the other stuff, this is what we are here for.

7:50 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I totally agree with you Daphne. We both know how bad it is to suffer that in private, but to have such an article published to the world is inexcusably insensitive.

12:26 am  
Blogger Ailbhe said...

I didn't think they called 6m a "miscarriage" any more?! That's late enough in our Trust to get a proper funeral. Early miscarriages don't do that.

11:20 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm appalled the Guardian still ran the story. And as for all the media calling it a miscarriage - don't they know anything?

8:08 pm  
Blogger 2 Daggers and a Fan said...

I just wanted to add to this as at 6 months it is a "still born" baby, not a miscarriage. Only those of us who have experienced these sort of happenings understand and feel the pain this brings.

My heart really goes out to her.

8:54 pm  

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