Raising a child is no easy feat - no matter who you are.
“I don’t think we give women enough credit for the physical and emotional marathon they go through when becoming a mother,” the 33-year-old actress says in a new interview with Balance magazine.
“I come from a place of amazing privilege. I have an incredible support system; I’ve been unbelievably lucky in my career; I can afford good childcare, and yet I still find it really f**cking difficult,” she says, before explaining that statement “doesn’t mean I don’t love my kid.”
“It’s okay to say that,” she adds. “It’s just me admitting that the sleep deprivation, the hormonal changes, the shift in relationship with my partner, are all things that make me feel as if I’m failing on a daily basis.”
Knightley goes on to share that she has “to remind myself that I haven’t failed, I’m just doing what I can do, but it’s not easy.”
The actress has long been outspoken about the difficulties of new motherhood, including the unrealistic expectations surrounding how women who have just given birth are supposed to present themselves to the world.
In an essay titled “The Weaker Sex,” which appears in the collection Feminists Don’t Wear Pink (And Other Lies), the actress wrote about how women are supposed to always “look beautiful,” noting the public fascination with Kate Middleton‘s polished public appearances just hours after giving birth.
“We stand and watch the TV screen. [Kate] was out of hospital seven hours later with her face made up and high heels on. The face the world wants to see,” Knightley wrote.
She continued, “Hide. Hide our pain, our bodies splitting, our breasts leaking, our hormones raging. Look beautiful. Look stylish, don’t show your battleground, Kate. Seven hours after your fight with life and death, seven hours after your body breaks open, and bloody, screaming life comes out.”
“Don’t show. Don’t tell. Stand there with your girl and be shot by a pack of male photographers,” she continued.
Later, Knightley went on to clarify that she did not mean to slam the royal, but rather the fact that we live in a society “that silences women’s truths and forces us all to hide.”
“I absolutely did not shame anybody in any way, in fact quite the opposite,” she said at the 2018 BFI London Film Festival in October, according to E! News.