Jess Phillips: Infertility diagnosis 'made me feel less of a woman'

31 January 2021, 16:21

By Seán Hickey

The Labour MP revealed that heath issues she experienced early in life were 'tainted with guilt.'

Labour MP and Shadow Minister for Domestic Violence and Safeguarding Jess Phillips opened up to Ruth Davidson on An Inconvenient Ruth.

She told Ruth that her early years were "tainted with guilt," after gynaecological problems as a result of suffering from HPV meant that doctors told her she would never be able to have children.

"There was always this sense that it was my fault, that I had done this to myself and that is really really awful to feel that way about yourself," she told Ruth.

Looking back, the Labour MP told LBC that the guilt she experienced as a result consumed her totally.

Ruth empathised with Ms Phillips, noting that "having children young has its own pressures," without taking into account one's medical conditions.

Ms Phillips noted that she felt immense pressure to prove herself as a young mother.

"Everybody was much older than me, they all had much better jobs than me," she added, telling Ruth she was intimidated by the gulf between herself and other parents.

When asked about her relationship with her husband, the Labour MP suggested that the obstacles they faced early on strengthened their link.

"It was a test that we'd got together and this had happened so quickly and we were both going to ace the test."