The US model and wife to singer, John Legend revealed in 2020 that she had lost a baby at 20 weeks, as a result of a pregnancy complication.
At the time, the loss was described as a miscarriage, and she shared emotional photos from her hospital bedside.
But Teigen has now revealed that she and husband John Legend “had to make a lot of difficult and heartbreaking decisions” after learning the child would not survive.
“It became very clear around halfway through that he would not survive, and that I wouldn’t either without any medical intervention,” Teigen explained while speaking at Propper Daley’s “A Day of Unreasonable Conversation” summit .
Teigen, 36, said she had only recently come to accept the procedure as “an abortion to save my life for a baby that had absolutely no chance”.
Her comments come in the wake of the US Supreme Court’s recent decision to overturn the Roe vs Wade ruling, which has allowed states to block abortion access.
Teigen said she had discussed the ruling with Legend, and expressed sympathy with people who have to make a decision to have an abortion, when her husband made her realise that she had in fact been one of those people.
“I fell silent, feeling weird that I hadn’t made sense of it that way,” Teigen.
“I told the world we had a miscarriage, the world agreed we had a miscarriage, all the headlines said it was a miscarriage.
“And I became really frustrated that I didn’t, in the first place, say what it was, and I felt silly that it had taken me over a year to actually understand that we had had an abortion.”
The couple had already named the unborn child Jack.
“Two years ago, when I was pregnant with Jack – John and my third child – I had to make a lot of difficult and heartbreaking decisions,” she said.
She told the session about having a miscarriage, before stopping herself and saying: “Let’s just call it what it was. It was an abortion. An abortion to save my life for a baby that had absolutely no chance. And to be honest, I never, ever put that together until, actually, a few months ago.”
Several weeks after losing her baby, Teigen wrote a moving blog explaining that she had been induced to deliver Jack at 20 weeks after being diagnosed with partial placental abruption.
Placental abruption is when the placenta starts to come away from the inside of the womb wall.
She recounted how her bleeding had become heavier and she went into hospital, where doctors “tried bags and bags of blood transfusions”, but they had no effect.
“After a couple nights at the hospital, my doctor told me exactly what I knew was coming – it was time to say goodbye,” she wrote.
Teigen and John Legend’s other two children are aged six and four, and she is currently pregnant again.