Actress Tika Sumpter delivers some choice advice for managing pregnancy on your terms. In case you missed it, the star of Tyler Perry’s “The Haves and Have Nots” dropped a bomb on fans late last month, when she revealed that she and her boyfriend (who will not be named) of two years are expecting their first child together. Believe it or not, the 36-year-old, who recently coproduced and starred in Southside With You, a rom-com surrounding future U.S. President Barack Obama (Parker Sawyers) and lawyer Michelle Robinson’s (Tika Sumpter) fateful first date in the summer of 1989, was able to keep her pregnancy under wraps for seven months.
That’s right, while many Hollywood couples would scream it from the mountaintops, Sumpter shied away from becoming a headline so that she could enjoy every minute of her pregnancy—alone.
“She’s my first child, and I wanted to experience every moment of this pregnancy for myself and enjoy it without everybody else being in it with me,” she recently told Fit Pregnancy and Baby. Needless to say, the expectant mother is redefining how we look at pregnancy in the public eye. In fact, you could say the brown skinned beauty is the epitome of “how to do pregnancy on your own terms.”
On privacy: “I didn’t want to hear, ‘Who’s the dad? Are you with the dad?’ Social media can be harsh, and I’m a mama bear, protective of my family. So that’s why I waited to tell people, including some friends. My friends weren’t mad at me. They said, ‘You did it the way you wanted to do it. You’re an inspiration,’” said Sumpter.
On setting your own expectations: “One of the first questions my mother asked when she found out I was pregnant was ‘Are you going to get married?’ I’d love to, but maybe in a year or so. I’ve been with my boyfriend for more than a year and a half,” the actress continued. “Our relationship is not dependent on a ring. I love him to death, and he loves me to death, and that’s all that matters to me.”
On guilt: “During my first trimester, I was nauseated all day. I couldn’t brush my teeth without gagging. I couldn’t eat meat other than burgers. The toilet bowl was my friend. Now, I just eat whatever I want. My body knows what it needs. Sometimes that’s a salad; sometimes it’s a milkshake, Frosted Flakes, or Kit Kats. I haven’t been working out either. After I walk my dog around the block, I’m so exhausted that I’m like, ‘Okay, I’m going to lie down.’ But I don’t care. There is nothing I feel guilty about.”