“The Blue Lagoon” actress Brooke Shields previously battled postpartum depression. However, actor Tom Cruise’s insulting remark only made her situation worse. See how the renowned actress reacted.
Actress Brooke Shields is one of the most beautiful stars in Hollywood, and she gained critical acclaim at 12 for the 1978 movie “Pretty Baby.”
Besides acting, she is a proud mother to daughters Rowan, 18, and Grier, 15. The actress shares her beautiful children with her husband, Chris Henchy, a renowned screenwriter.
Left: Tom Cruise attends the 10th Annual Lumiere Awards at Warner Bros. Studios on January 30, 2019 in Burbank. Right: Brooke Shields at Universal Studios Hollywood on April 23, 2019 in Universal City, California. | Photo: Getty Images
STRUGGLES WITH POSTPARTUM DEPRESSION
“It was so dramatic, and it was not glorious.”
Shields noted how many people would say that giving birth to a child was the most amazing moment a mother could achieve. What she felt at that time was far from perfect.
Brooke Shields and her husband Chris Henchy attend “Nightcap” Season 2 New York Premiere Party at Crosby Street Hotel on June 6, 2017 in New York City. | Photo: Getty Images
When she saw Henchy cradling Rowan at the hospital delivery room, Shields said she felt rage. She was also angry at his husband for being happy.
Shields felt jealous that her husband could take in the precious moment with pure joy while she was robbed of that due to the difficult delivery. When they returned home from the hospital, Shields said her feelings darkened.
The dark mood left the veteran actress unable to bond with her baby, as she found herself crying hysterically with mixed feelings of rage and self-hatred. She admitted she had “no desire” to care for her little daughter.
Shields also thought she felt the “baby blues,” but she experienced something worse. While she was overwhelmed by her own emotions, she was unaware that Henchy noticed her actions.
Anxious about taking antidepressants, Shields said she was embarrassed and insulted.
Henchy cried and asked Shields what was wrong as she had never sung or expressed love to their baby. He also wondered why his wife acted differently from other mothers.
Shields said she thought she still had “baby blues” until her friends informed her that she was in the grip of postpartum depression. She was prescribed antidepressants after a visit to her doctor’s office.
Anxious about taking antidepressants, Shields said she felt embarrassed and insulted at first. But Henchy encouraged and begged the “Endless Love” actress to try out the doctor’s prescription for the sake of their family.
Shields reluctantly agreed to take antidepressants. Fortunately, it worked wonders for her mental health. Over time, she started to calm down and feel closer to Rowan. Since then, she has established a bond with her charming daughter.
Her experience with postpartum depression encouraged Shields to urge mothers not to ignore the symptoms. She advised them to pay attention to their feelings and seek medical assistance.
While the public welcomed Shields’ suggestion, actor Tom Cruise did not favor her taking antidepressants. The “Top Gun” actor was known for his previous affiliation with the group called Scientology.
Cruise’s former religion forbade him from using “mind-altering substances.” Instead of taking mood-altering drugs, he suggested that women should take “vitamins and exercise. In a 2005 interview, Cruise said in response to Shields’ prescription:
“I disagree with it, and I think there’s a higher and better quality of life…”
The “Edge of Tomorrow” actor said psychiatry was “pseudoscience.” He also noted that Shields was “irresponsible” for taking antidepressants to treat postpartum depression.
BROOKE SHIELDS LASHING OUT
Cruise’s remarks drew criticisms, with Shields lashing out at him. She said he should focus on saving the world from alien invasions and let women with postpartum depression decide what treatment options are best for them.
In her The New York Times column, Shield pointed out that his remarks were a disservice to mothers everywhere. She added it showed how he lacked an understanding of the condition and childbirth in general.
She noted in the column that experts estimated at least one in ten women would suffer from it and usually, in silence. She emphasized that her experience was real and personal.
During her appearance on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” Shields shared how Cruise apologized to her. She revealed that he came to her house and gave her “a heartfelt apology.”
The “War of the Worlds” actor was sorry for dragging her into the whole controversy. For her part, Shields said she was impressed with Cruise’s sincerity during his apology.
At that time, Shields said she did not feel any urge to defend herself and that the “Jack Reacher” actor was not trying to convince her about anything. She wholeheartedly accepted her apology.
Cruise and Shields eventually buried the hatchet, with the actress attending his wedding in 2006. At the time, he tied the knot with “Mad Money” actress Katie Holmes.
Shields revealed that Holmes personally invited her to the wedding, which happened in Italy. Holmes told Shields that their wedding ceremony would not feel right without the latter.
But her attendance at Cruise’s wedding sparked yet another controversy, with some fans questioning her presence in the ceremony despite her earlier public spat with the actor.
Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise attend the 2012 Vanity Fair Oscar Party on February 26, 2012 in West Hollywood, California. | Photo: Getty Images
Shields stressed that she wanted to honor Cruise and Holmes’s invitation, and she had no malice in her heart when she accepted it. “It was still a wedding,” she said.
The actress came to the wedding with Henchy. She gifted Holmes with an antique enamel compact. She recalled feeling like Bourne while delivering the gift to Holmes because of the heavy security involved.
Besides her feud and reconciliation with Cruise, Shields had an earlier run-in with the actor and Holmes. The couple’s daughter Suri was born on the same date and in the same hospital as Grier, Shields’ second daughter with Henchy.
Media crews flocked to the hospital, and Shields had thought someone alerted the media about her childbirth. It turned out that the press was after Holmes and her newborn baby with Cruise.