Coronation Street star Kym Marsh has revealed her “heartbreaking” decision to relive the most difficult period of her own life for the soap.
Her character Michelle will suffer a miscarriage at 23 weeks pregnant next month - she will give birth to son Ruairi after going into labour early.
I discussed it with my family and friends, all of whom were very supportive.
The acclaimed actress admitted she “thought long and hard” before agreeing to the traumatic storyline after she lost her own baby son, Archie, at 22 weeks in 2009.
The soap favourite said: “It is obviously a cause very close to my heart having lost my beautiful Archie at 21 weeks and five days.
“I discussed it with my family and friends, all of whom were very supportive.
"In the end I felt it was an important story to tell in order to raise awareness of something which affects thousands of women every year.
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“Losing a child is something that never leaves you so to revisit those feelings as Michelle has been challenging.
“Coronation Street ensured that I had a counsellor on set at all times to go to after filming the scenes but for me the best tonic after a hugely emotional day was to go home to my kids and be reminded of how lucky I am to have them.”
Kym has three children: David, 20, Emilie, 18, and five-year-old Polly.
Show boss Kate Oates said of the hard-hitting plot: “The subject of miscarriage will always be sensitive.
"But telling this story with Simon and Kym at the centre would always have an extra poignancy.”
The tragic story is sure to add even greater strain to Michelle and Steve's marriage.
The pub landlord is - unbeknown to his wife - expecting a baby with Leanne, after getting her pregnant during a one-night stand.