"I Wanted This Birth To Be Different"

The world was different when Christina Elmore was preparing for her second labor and delivery experience. The Insecure star learned that she and husband Ryan Duke were expecting on the day George Floyd was murdered. Such a tumultuous time in the United States led Elmore to ask questions.


“I thought a lot about how I wanted this birth to be different. I didn’t want to fall back on the same decisions just because it’s what I did with my first child,” the Insecure star writes in an op-ed written for Women’s Health. “I tried to think of this new life as being all his own. How was he going to come into a world that was at the height of the racial reckoning in this country?”

The racial reckoning in the United States combined with the pandemic caused Christina Elmore to desire more from her labor and delivery experience.

“I wanted to feel like my worries and my pain would be heard and that I wouldn’t have to be translating while talking about fibroids, which I and many Black women have, or my fear of a C-section because of keloid scars, which people with darker skin are more susceptible to developing,” Elmore writes. “I knew that I wanted to have an all-Black midwife team this time around,” the actress reveals in her op-ed. “Even though I had amazing care before, I just thought it would be so powerful to make a change.”

Deciding to have an all-Black midwife team rendered many perks for Elmore. “I quickly noticed a difference in my care,” the Insecure star shares with Women’s Health. “My actual birth experience was different, too,” Elmore adds.

“Both of my midwives were there, and I had a wonderful Black birth photographer, along with my lovely husband, who is white. I felt so supported. Labor is hard for everyone, but I knew that I could focus on that and they would be attuned to my needs.”

“I was lucky that my first birth had that, too. But this time, I was looking across a room that resembled me. These women looked like my mom and my aunties. I felt safe.”

Christina Elmore and Ryan Duke welcomed their second child in January 2021.

Photo: Women’s Health



Sarie is a writer and editor for BCK's Los Angeles division. She also shares stories on Medium that are meant to encourage thought and discussion. You can catch her outside enjoying nature and classical literature. Pop culture is pretty fun, too!

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