FormerLove Island contestant Montana Brown has opened up about her struggle to conceive and experiencing “excruciating pain” in the early days of her pregnancy.
The 27-year-old reality star announced on Christmas Eve that she is expecting her first child with boyfriend Mark O’Connor.
While Brown and O’Connor appeared over the moon about their forthcoming arrival, the Swim Society founder said it wasn’t completely smooth sailing to get pregnant.
On Instagram, she answered questions from her fans and was asked whether the pregnancy was planned.
“This was planned, however, I didn’t realise for ages that I was pregnant, because we were trying earlier on in the year and it wasn’t happening,” she said, adding that she had “loads of tests done” and was told she had “really low levels of oestrogen and testosterone”.
“I thought it’s going to take us a bit longer,’ she continued. “And then Bob’s your uncle, Fanny’s your aunt, it was very, very random and unexpected, but it was planned.”
Brown said it wasn’t until she started experiencing symptoms like feeling “sick” and “hot sweats” that she realised something had changed, but she was still unaware she was pregnant.
“I had excruciating pain, shooting pain, and that’s why I didn’t think I was pregnant, I was like, ‘This hurts,’ I thought I had a gall stone or appendicitis or something,” she explained.
The reality star added in another video that she didn’t think it was “that likely” that she was expecting and her boyfriend had to convince her to take a pregnancy test.
The happy news was shared by the couple on Saturday, 24 December via Instagram. It included a video montage which began with her showing her positive pregnancy tests.
It also showed Brown having an ultrasound scan while another clip showed her and O’Connor on a recent beach holiday, where he cradled her growing bump.
She wrote in the caption: “Baby O’Connor coming next summer.”
Brown was a participant in 2015’s ITV reality dating series. Brown was soon married to Alex Beattie at the end of the series, but they broke up shortly after.
She met O’Connor in 2020 and the pair went Instagram official the year after. She told FUBAR radio in June: “This guy, we’re going to go on a walk, and he was like, ‘I’m gonna come pick you up.’ He lives like quite far from me and where we’re going is not near me either.
“He’s like, ‘I’m gonna swing by, pick you up. Are there any allergies? Because I’m gonna grab some food on the way for our walk.’
“I was like, ‘Would you like to marry me?!’”