‘Grief caught up with me’ Anita Rani opens up on the miscarriage she suffered in 2018 and why she’s happy being ‘fun Auntie Anita’

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  • Anita Rani has been fronting a TV programme all about parenting, Britain’s Best Parent? but she had her own chance to be a mum cruelly snatched away from her in 2018 when she suffered a devastating miscarriage.

    The 42-year-old presenter has now opened up about the delayed grief she suffered, after forcing herself to dive back into work and distract herself after losing her and husband Bhupi’s baby.

    Speaking to You magazine, Anita said, ‘Miscarriage is this taboo that exists in society and somehow, as women, we just have to get on with it.

    ‘When you go through it, it’s such a shock to you – you don’t know what’s happening. Your body’s going through something, your psychology is going through something, you’re grieving, it’s a sense of loss, it’s trauma. It’s so much to deal with.

    ‘I did this thing where I just thought, “I’ve got this; I can carry on”, but it catches up with you.’

    Being ‘fun Auntie Anita’

    Anita has previously confessed that she doesn’t know whether she will ever be a mum – and isn’t in any rush.

    Last year, she said, ‘There are enough children to go around, so if the odd woman doesn’t want to have one then it’s fine.’

    She added, ‘I’m going to say something controversial now, but at 41 I don’t feel old. We are living longer these days and how I feel at 41 is no way how my mother or grandmother felt at this age. I just think everybody needs to relax a bit when it comes to children.’

    In the meantime, Anita is happy to just be ‘fun Auntie Anita’ to her and Bhupi’s goddaughters and her niece – her brother’s daughter.

    She said, ‘It’s easy when you’re fun. When you’re fun Auntie Anita you can do what you want!

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    ‘It was my husband’s 40th recently and we have goddaughters who live three streets away. They came and brought him biscuits and made a special birthday banner.’

    And it sounds like the children have a great time at her house. ‘We do lots of dancing in my house – music, dancing, spinning around, movies, ice cream, sweets,’ Anita said. ‘I’m sending your children home high on E-numbers! I’m not the one who has to put them to bed so it’s fine.’

    Speaking during the country’s coronavirus lockdown she added, ‘It’s tough in lockdown because I’m missing my niece. Although I get daily videos on WhatsApp.’

    A traditional upbringing

    Fronting Britain’s Best Parent? – a Channel 4 show in which mums and dads are judged on their parenting techniques – could have been difficult for Anita but she insists that not being a parent herself has helped her to stay impartial on the show.

    ‘I try not to be too judgemental because I don’t have kids,’ she said. ‘Also, I’m godmother and aunt and surrounded by children. For me it’s totally up to the individual about how to bring up their children, no one else.’

    Anita was brought up in Bradford and when it comes to her own parents, she laughs about how her father let her mother take the bulk of the parenting responsibilities.

    She said, ‘My dad is hilarious – he’s definitely a father of his generation and never changed a single nappy – and he now feels he’s perfectly placed to give my brother advice on parenting, which we all find very amusing!’

    She added, ‘They did so many things that were just bonkers and completely wrong but somehow, we muddled through it and they’ve got two relatively well-formed children out of it. If you asked them, they’d say the same.’

    She finished, ‘If they could go back and do things differently, I’m sure my mum would say she would. But they gave me and my brother the best start they could, given their circumstances.’