In addition to natural births, many celebrities choose to also adopt or use surrogacy to become parents. Whatever approach celebrities choose, some work hard to keep details of their growing families to themselves. While adoption and surrogacy are much easier to keep quiet about because “expectant” moms don’t show any outward signs of the impending delivery, celebrities who choose to give birth naturally do everything they can to keep the arrival of their new additions quiet. Many take a step back from the limelight, while others either try to hide their bumps in interesting ways or never publicly acknowledge their pregnancy (or any details about it). Any of these approaches are reasonable considering it’s really no one’s business but their own and because they have so much attention on them they have to deal with safety concerns.
Then there’s the flip side, celebrities who choose to share every detail of their pregnancy and birth. Everything from ultrasound pictures (I’m looking at you, Blac Chyna), baby bump pictures, possible names and new baby pictures. They can’t help it, they’re constantly in the media so they choose to embrace the attention. It may not be like the birth of Prince George back in 2014 when it seemed as though half the world was camped out front of Kate’s hospital, but everyone still waits with anticipation for the birth of celebrity babies. There’s absolutely no way they’d be able to get away with either no one noticing they’re pregnant or that they’ve given birth. The celebrities who value their privacy more than anything make a conscious decision to keep their exciting news to themselves. Kudos to them for being able to pull that off because with paparazzi hiding behind every corner waiting for the money shot, it’s not an easy feat to pull the wool over the public’s eyes.
Here are women who were able to do just that, keep their growing families a secret for as long as possible, either through adoption, surrogacy or natural births. Sit back, enjoy and prepare to be surprised!
15. Gaby Hoffmann
You may remember Hoffmann as the adorable little girl in 90s hit movies such as Uncle Buck, Sleepless in Seattle and Volcano, but what you may not remember is that she had a daughter. The former Girls actress didn’t reveal the birth of her daughter Rosemary, with boyfriend Chris Dapkins, for over a month afterwards.
Interesting fact, Hoffmann took part in the growing trend of eating placenta. She had a home birth so she was able to store the placenta in her freezer and enjoy nutritious smoothies for a few weeks afterwards. While this isn’t for everyone, those who partake adamantly support the practice due to the nutrients within it. Not sure if there’s a taste one has to get used to but some ladies choose to have their placentas turned into pills or pellets that they can ingest daily. Whatever you choose, enjoy!
14. Laura Linney
Linney kept her pregnancy to herself primarily due to her age; she was 49 when she gave birth to her son Bennett Armistead. Her son’s middle name is taken from Linney’s favorite author, Armistead Maupin. Since she was due to become a mom a little later in life, she chose to wait until the her son’s birth before sharing the good news with the world. Dad is Linney’s husband of seven years, Marc Schauer, and Bennett is their first child together.
While she says she never intentionally hid her pregnancy (she just chose not to talk about it because it was high risk) no one commented, not even media outlets, when she began to show. She’s part of a growing trend in Hollywood of women having children well into their 40s. Think Halle Berry who gave birth to her son at age 47, Kelly Preston who gave birth at 48 or even Salma Hayek who gave birth to her daughter at 41. Because of the risk of complications associated with births later in life, it’s no wonder Linney didn’t talk about her pregnancy outright and took a step back from public appearances (she skipped the Emmy awards ceremony where she won the Best Actress award for her role in The Big C).
13. Lucy Liu
Lucy Liu welcomed her first child, a son named Rockwell Lloyd, into the world in August 2015. After his arrival she took to Instagram to make the shock announcement and post a sweet picture of herself holding her newborn. This was especially surprising because she wasn’t actually pregnant, her son was birthed into the world with the help of a surrogate. Liu has always been private about her personal life, very rarely addressing rumors in the media. Keeping this major milestone in her life under wraps is understandable, especially given the need for safety and privacy of the surrogate who carried her child.
Liu has posted a few more candid shots of her son (some in adorable onesies) since his birth and has fully embraced her new role as a mother. She’s even discussed weaning her son and his very messy attempts at learning to eat solid food. Super sweet!
Adele is an especially private person. She successfully hid her pregnancy by staying away from paparazzi and dressing in dark, loose clothing on the seldom occasions when she had to venture out in public. News of her pregnancy became public when she was already seven months pregnant, as she released a statement on her website announcing the happy news. This was no small feat in a time when media outlets are outing celebs and taking away their opportunity to make their announcements on their own terms. In addition to this, no one knew the name of her son for several months after his birth. It was only confirmed after some eagle-eyed paparazzi pointed out that Adele consistently work a necklace with Angelo on it.
11. Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Who says the onus is only on women to keep their pregnancies private? Celebrity men with wives who aren’t in the industry have to do it too. Gordon-Levitt and his wife, Tasha McCauly, married is a very private ceremony in their home back in 2014. Unlike the other couples on this list, she’s actually a businesswoman with no connection to Hollywood (other than her husband that is). This helps with their attempts at privacy, but due to Gordon-Levitt’s rising star power, this can be difficult at times. Despite the challenges, they were able to keep her pregnancy out of the spotlight and no one even knew McCauly was pregnant. Their son was born in August 2015, with the birth obviously surprising everyone. They’ve made the conscious decision not to release their baby’s name or any pictures. It remains to be seen how they pull this off long-term because there have been a few very rare photos of their son leaked online.
10. Isla Fisher
Fisher and funny man husband Sacha Baron Cohen were already parents of two when the world found out that they’d welcomed a third baby, a son named Montgomery Moses Brian, into their family. The name Brian is a tribute to Fisher’s dad. Fisher has said that she was convinced she was having a boy this time because she suffered from far less morning sickness than when she was expecting each of her daughters. She’s on to something because she was right! After baby Montgomery arrived, the couple waited a month before revealing their happy news. Her girls must be excited to have a brother to dote on.
Since expanding their family, Fisher has opted to take a step back from acting. She’s made a conscious decision to only appear in supporting roles so that she’s able to focus on her family. She even chose not to appear in the recent sequel Now You See Me 2 for that very reason. Her character Henley was replaced by Lizzy Caplan who plays Lula May, the newest member of The Four Horsemen.
9. Alexis Bledel
The Gilmore Girls star, who’s married to former Mad Men actor Vincent Kartheiser, was able to keep not only her pregnancy under wraps but also the birth of her son, for an unbelievably long time. It wasn’t until her Gilmore Girls co-star, Scott Patterson, spilled the beans (we’re assuming by accident) during a magazine interview that the world found out about her “new” arrival. News of the arrival of her son spread six months after Bledel had given birth. Much like Joseph Gordon-Levitt and his wife, Bledel and Kartheiser have chosen not to reveal their toddler’s name or release any photos. It might be hard in this day and age with social media giving prompt updates about all things celebrity-related, but so far so good.
8. Carey Mulligan
Although she never actually confirmed it, due to the loose fitting clothes she started wearing, everyone knew that Mulligan was expecting her first child with Mumford & Sons front man Marcus Mumford. However, it wasn’t until she made an appearance at a film festival that folks realized that she’d given birth without them noticing. Mulligan and Mumford’s daughter Evelyn was born in September 2015. Like every other couple on this list, Mulligan and Mumford are very private about their personal life and have been pictured with their bundle of joy only a few times. Evelyn’s face usually isn’t visible. Mulligan has also been a little open about the difficulties she’s faced trying to promote her new movie Suffragette while nursing her baby.
7. Jennifer Carpenter
Anyone else shocked by this one? The former Dexter actress gave birth to her first child, a son named Isaac, with musician Seth Avett in May 2015. It took a full three months for news to finally reach the masses. Carpenter even confirmed that she was eight-and-a-half months pregnant when she shot the pilot for Limitless (based on the 2011 movie starring Bradley Cooper). With the help of skillful camera angles and a costume team that worked wonders, it was difficult to tell that she was expecting. This likely worked in her favor in keeping the news to herself even while in front of a camera for hours. In addition to this, much like Coco Austin, her baby bump wasn’t huge so it wouldn’t have been obvious that she was expecting even when she was out and about in L.A.
These two are possibly not as uber-private as some of the other couples on this list, as they’ve shared a few pictures of their bundle of joy on social media. They’ve also been snapped strolling through the streets together looking super happy.
6. Hilarie Burton
Burton started dating everyone’s new favorite TV villain, Jeffrey Dean Morgan (who else is looking forward to seeing Negan and Lucille again?), back in 2009 after being set up by a mutual friend. What the public didn’t know is that they’d been dating for a while before they went public with their relationship AND Burton had already given birth to their son, Augustus (Gus) in 2010. How exactly did they manage this? They’re obviously very private people and opted not to discuss their private life in public. Also, Burton only disclosed her pregnancy to very close family members and stayed out of the public eye for several months. These tactics helped this discrete couple keep their private life private.
The couple is still going strong and their son is now six years old. Interesting side note; Dean Morgan also has an 11-year-old son whose mother is an ex-girlfriend. He learned he had a son, Dean Morgan, around the time he and Burton started dating.
5. Sandra Bullock
Bullock surprised everyone with the announcement of the adoption of her second child, a daughter named Laila in 2015. Laila was a foster child before she was officially adopted. Bullock and her two children (she’s also mom to Louis who she adopted in 2010) appeared on the cover of People magazine to make the surprise announcement. Out of privacy and the safety of her children, her daughter’s face wasn’t revealed in the issue. As a foster child, keeping Laila out of the public proved to be difficult, but Bullock was ultimately able to keep pictures of her 3-year-old daughter from making the rounds on the web.
Bullock is known to be very private when it comes to talking about her kids due to the intense media attention that surrounds her. She’s accustomed to the attention since it’s part of her job but doesn’t feel her kids should be exposed since it can be overwhelming for them. This makes complete sense considering she experienced a home invasion in 2014 when her stalker broke into her home one evening. Fortunately, neither her nor her son were harmed.
4. Anne Hathaway
We all knew that Hathaway was expecting and waited patiently for her big day to arrive. Who wasn’t surprised when she finally revealed that she and her husband Adam Shulman had a son, Jonathan, two weeks before they revealed him to the world? They must have enjoyed having that quiet time together, enjoying the peace and quiet and lack of media attention. Hathaway didn’t hide her pregnancy, in fact she did the opposite. She was spotted out and about in L.A. several times and even on a beach showing off her growing bump.
They’ve been somewhat open when taking Jonathan on outings but are still very aware of the paparazzi and want to protect their son as much as possible. Even with all the attention, Hathaway has been open about her desires to be a mother and wants to have more children in the future.
3. Naya Rivera
Following the same path as Hathaway, everyone was well aware that Rivera was expecting. However, it took two weeks for the world to find out about the birth of her son, Josey. Dad is Ryan Dorsey who currently appears in Justified. Since introducing her son to the world, they’ve appeared on a magazine cover together and at various events. She’s clearly not keeping him under wraps like some of the other parents on this list but enjoys showing him off a little. She’s made up for the two weeks she and her family had with him before announcing his birth.
She’s been open about her weight gain during her pregnancy but has been able to lose the weight through maintaining a healthy diet, exercise and nursing her baby. It’s understandable that the private lives of some celebrities are off limits but it’s also refreshing to be let in to see these celebrity babies from time to time.
2. Tyra Banks
Like Lucy Liu, Banks welcomed her first child, as son named York, via surrogate in January 2016. She’s been open about her struggles with infertility and failed IVF rounds of treatment. After a year and a half of trying, she chose to use a surrogate and kept the process a secret from even her closest friends. She’s since explained that she did this for fear of the procedure not being successful. Very understandable given the heartache she suffered in the past from multiple failed attempts. She chose to wait until York actually arrived to share the good news. Dad is Banks’ boyfriend, photographer Erik Asla. The couple are the genetic parents of little York.
Her first born is only a few months old now but Banks has already expressed her desire to have more children. We’re wishing her all the best as she ventures to increase her family. She’s already stepmom to Asla’s two daughters from a previous relationship.
1. Eva Mendes
Eva Mendes has been dating Ryan Gosling for five years (they met on the set of their movie The Place Beyond the Pines in 2011) and both actors are notoriously private people who don’t discuss their personal lives with the media. Mendes’ first pregnancy was suspected but never confirmed until after news emerged of the birth of their first daughter. If that wasn’t enough, her second pregnancy was only confirmed two months before she gave birth to their second child. Mendes and Gosling are parents to two daughters, Esmeralda Amada and Amada Lee. Back in 2014 Mendes explained that Amada was her grandmother’s name and is Spanish for “beloved”. How sweet that both girls share this tribute to their great-grandmother.