Sitting beneath an oak tree by a lake in her husband’s arms, former top model Sophie Anderton is the picture of contentment as she turns to smile at the man she calls her "soulmate". It has been two years since she married Count Kazimierz "Kaz" Balinski-Jundzill in a romantic ceremony at their beautiful country residence, Glendalough House in County Wicklow, Ireland. Like many couples, they once hoped they would welcome a child together.
But now, in this exclusive interview with HELLO!, Sophie reveals for the first time that after a traumatic incident and plenty of soul-searching, they have not only come to terms with the reality that it will never happen, they are also embracing the alternative: enjoying the family they already have - Kaz’s four children from previous marriages and Sophie’s 13 godchildren - while living life to the full.
"It's been the hardest decision I’ve ever had to make, to accept that we won't have a child of our own," the former supermodel says. "I've experienced a rollercoaster of emotions over it, but Kaz has been amazing and beyond supportive as he reconciled himself to it, too. Once we accepted the fact that having a baby wouldn't happen, it was liberating, as if the final piece of a puzzle had slotted into place."
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Sophie, now 46, who found fame as the face of Gossard lingerie and walked the runway for top fashion brands including Chanel, Valentino and Ralph Lauren, recalls how they had been in a committed relationship for three years when they decided to try for a baby. After failing to fall pregnant naturally they considered IVF but eventually decided against it.
Sophie talks miscarriage
Then, just over a year after their wedding in August 2021, Sophie discovered that without realising, she had fallen pregnant naturally – only to suffer a miscarriage. "A wave of loss and grief engulfed me," she says. "But the worst emotion I experienced was shame. I felt as if I was damaged goods - which was illogical because I had nothing to feel ashamed for. I was angry, too, but put on a brave face. Inside, though, I found it hard to cope, but took charge of it and rather than allow it to define me, I reached out for help to a network of holistic specialists and began the process for healing through nutrition, yoga, alternative therapies, Pilates and meditation. I've come out of it feeling better than ever before."
As Sophie understands only too well, there is another hurtful aspect that women who haven't had a baby often endure – the criticism and judgment they're subjected to for being childless. "I find it intolerable that some people think it's appropriate to ask why I've not had children," she tells us. "So many women I know haven't met someone to have children with or they've missed the window of fertility. But that doesn’t make them less of a woman. We need to redefine views on women who don't have children and accept that it's fine to have a different life to what society dictates."
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Sophie and Kaz's marriage
Being married to businessman Kaz, 54, Sophie couldn’t be happier. "We enjoy the same things, are totally in love, and rarely argue. There's never a dull moment and our life is full of laughter. I adore hiking to waterfalls and mountaineering with him. We also kayak, sail and swim in the ocean," continues Sophie, who with Kaz is planning exciting adventures all over the world. "This our time to do the things we’ve always dreamed of. Finally, I've found peace and my place in the world as the person I was always meant to be."
Photographer for picture under tree: Alan Rowlette
Sailing photographer: Alan Keville
Makeup/ Hair: Billy Orr
Stylist: Fiona Fagan
All clothing by Brown Thomas
Photographers Assistant: Kris Hand
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