“To say I was devastated is to pick a word on a low shelf for convenience,” Union, 48, wrote in her memoir, You Got Anything Stronger, which hit shelves on Tuesday, September 14. “I have not had words, and even after untold amounts of therapy I am not sure I have them now. But truth matters.”
The Bring It On actress got real in the book about her ups and downs with Wade, 39, whom she married in August 2014, including the rocky moment she learned he was going to be a father in 2013. While the retired NBA player fathered son Xavier, now 7, with Aja Metoyer while he and Union were on a break, it didn’t take out the sting.
In fact, when Wade broke the news to Union ahead of Xavier’s arrival, they were trying for their own child. The couple got engaged in December 2013 following their brief split earlier that year.
“The experience of Dwyane having a baby so easily — while I was unable to — left my soul not just broken into pieces, but shattered into fine dust scattering in the wind,” the L.A.’s Finest alum recalled. “We gathered what we could to slowly remake me into something new. There was no way to disguise where I’d been glued back together.”
Union hit rock bottom while trying to conceive, saying she remembered thinking, “This woman is such a failure. And she has the nerve to be old. And she has the nerve to have a younger husband. And she has the nerve to stick with a guy who had a kid with somebody else.” The She’s All That actress admitted that her “feelings weren’t originating from a healthy place” during that period.
Amid her rocky road to motherhood, Union recalled the former Miami Heat player telling her, “As much as we want this baby, I want you. … We’ve lost too much in our relationship for me to be OK with encouraging you to do one more thing to your body and your soul.”
Despite unconditional love from her partner — and navigating his role as father to Zaire, 19, and Zaya, 14, whom he shares with ex-wife Siohvaughn Funches, as well as Xavier — Union wasn’t certain they would make it through the dark time.
“So much of what made the decision so difficult was that if I didn’t submit to a surrogacy, then I was convinced I needed to let Dwyane go,” she wrote. “Even if he didn’t want to, I had to let him find someone who could give him what he wanted. But I loved him.”
“Each day, he had worked to be forgiven, and I had chosen to love him and forgive him. And part of this journey of making peace with our love is also making peace with ourselves,” the 10 Things I Hate About You actress wrote, noting the pair’s relationship struggles made them stronger. “He wouldn’t have become the man he desperately wanted to be, and I would not become the woman I dreamed of being.”
Union, who has embraced being a stepmother and mother, revealed that her inability to conceive on her own left her with questions about her and Wade’s level of love.
“I can never know if my failure to carry a child put a ceiling on the love my husband has for me. Yes, I am Baby Mama number three, a label that is supposed to be an insult,” she shared. “If I am telling the fullness of our stories, of our three lives together, I must tell the truths I live with. I have learned that you can be honest and loving at the same time.”