Related topics

Serena Williams: Childbirth made me stronger

January 16, 2018 GMT

Serena Williams says childbirth made her “stronger”.

The 36-year-old tennis star was plagued by health problems when she welcomed daughter Alexis Jr. into the world four months ago but says the whole experience has made her a stronger person.

She shared on Facebook: “I didn’t expect that sharing our family’s story of Olympia’s birth and all of complications after giving birth would start such an outpouring of discussion from women - especially black women - who have faced similar complications and women whose problems go unaddressed.

“These aren’t just stories: according to the CDC, (Center for Disease Control) black women are over 3 times more likely than White women to die from pregnancy - or childbirth-related causes. We have a lot of work to do as a nation and I hope my story can inspire a conversation that gets us to close this gap.

“Let me be clear: EVERY mother, regardless of race, or background deserves to have a healthy pregnancy and childbirth. I personally want all women of all colors to have the best experience they can have. My personal experience was not great but it was MY experience and I’m happy it happened to me. It made me stronger and it made me appreciate women -- both women with and without kids -- even more. We are powerful!!! (sic)”

Serena had previously revealed she had small blood clots on her lungs soon after giving birth and her C-section wound opened because of the intense coughing spells the pulmonary embolism. However, she was dealt with another blow when doctors discovered a large hematoma and she was bed-ridden for six weeks.