Erin Andrews Details Lowest Moments From "Crappy" 10-Year Fertility Journey

While it took 10 years for Erin Andrews and husband Jarret Stoll to reach their personal end zone—life with son Mack—the long slog down the field was worth it, she told E! News in a new interview.

By Sarah Grossbart Mar 23, 2024 12:00 PMTags
Watch: Erin Andrews and Jarret Stoll Welcome First Baby Via Surrogate

Never did Erin Andrews imagine she'd have to call so many audibles en route to becoming a mom to now-8-month-old son Mack.  

"I say this not to try to brag or anything, but I ended up marrying a person who had success in his career," she exclusively told E! News of husband Jarret Stoll, who won two Stanley Cups as a centre for the Los Angeles Kings. The NFL sportscaster herself, meanwhile, "worked my rear end off to have my dream job with Fox Sports doing America's game of the week," she added. "I hadn't been told no a lot." 

And though a 2017 cervical cancer diagnosis meant she had to undergo two surgeries to remove portions of her cervix—all while cha-cha-ing her way to a third place finish on the 10th season of Dancing With the Stars—she assumed she had all the Xs and Os in place to have a baby. 

"I work out all the time," reasoned the 45-year-old, who had already frozen her eggs years before her diagnosis. "I eat right. I take care of my body, yet my body was not producing the way I wanted it to." 

Erin Andrews and Jarret Stoll’s Cutest Moments

So on the precipice of her seventh round of in vitro fertilization (IVF), "I just was so tired of keeping quiet," she explained of sharing her struggles in a 2021 essay. "It was such a hard, painful journey. I think I went numb through most of it, because you just feel like a robot and you're on this really unfair roller coaster that more times out of none, you're going to get really bad news." 

The physical component was hard on its own.

"You feel like crap, you're pumping all these chemicals into your body," she described. "And that's just the IVF part of it. That's not the emotional roller coaster with this surrogacy route. And after a while, I got so tired of seeing all these waiting rooms at the fertility clinics just packed. And I felt like nobody was giving the reality of how crappy the situation was. And so I decided not to bottle it up anymore."


Hence her motivation for teaming up with Enfamil for their Bottle Up partnership, raising awareness about all the struggles parents face. Her game plan: To help others know that no matter the battle, they've got a whole squad behind them. 

"I'm a vocal person," she acknowledged of sharing her fertility journey, "and I could speak from the heart and just talk about how crappy it was and that I get it for a lot of couples and families that are trying to have a child." 

Doing her best to manage her emotions throughout the process, continued Andrews, "I just became this robot where I'm like, do it again, let's do another round. It's draining on your finances. It's draining on your relationship. It's draining on your self-esteem. My body has forever changed because of the whole thing." 

And yet it was her heart that took the brunt of it. "Having so many failed attempts is really, really difficult," she explained, "when you look around and you're like, 'Why does everybody else have a baby? Why is this easier for everybody else and not me?'"

Still, even at her lowest she never once considered throwing in the towel. 

"I don't really know if I ever got to that point," she said. Though as they advanced from the IVF route to the surrogacy route, the situation certainly felt more fraught. "We didn't have many embryos left," she continued. "We had already lost two, which was a really big deal because they were really good ones. And I thought to myself, 'Okay, if this doesn't work, we'll go the egg donor route.'"

Her winning strategy, she explained, was to "exhaust all options to make this a reality." 

Erin Andrews/Instagram

As they marched their way down the proverbial field, there were definitely times that Andrews wavered, recounting one plane ride in late 2022 the day before she and Stoll, 41, learned their surrogate was pregnant with their son. 

"I was flying home from a game and the second I sat in my chair on the plane, I just lost my s--t," she detailed. Trying to avoid catching the attention of her fellow passengers, "I just started bawling because I thought, 'I can't hide behind my football game anymore, now I have to face reality. We're going to find out if she's pregnant tomorrow.'" 

At that moment, she continued, "I was like, 'Oh my God, what if it doesn't work? I can't do this again.'" 

Which is what makes moments with Mack—like a recent morning spent enjoying cuddles and a round of Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?—all that much sweeter.  

Erin Andrews/Instagram

"It was just a fight to get there and then she's pregnant and it's like, 'Let's keep him healthy. Oh my God, are we going into the delivery room? Oh my God, he's here,'" reflected the WEAR by Erin Andrews founder. "Now it's like we've almost had a breath to think about all this. I think now I'm starting to understand what a gift he is." 

And, yes, there have still been tough moments like the nights Andrews spent keeping watch over the monitor to make sure Mack was okay ("I go, 'His face looks really smashed in the crib. Do you think he's breathing?'") or poring over the research to decide which formula to choose.

Enfamil Enspire Optimum proved to be the winner, noted Andrews, thanks to its lactoferrin, which is "the protein found in breast milk and colostrum." 

And then there was the time he had a diaper blowout midway through a FaceTime conversation with Andrews' parents. "Literally crap running down my arm and leg," she recalled. "It was great." 

Erin Andrews/Instagram

But any s--tty situations are overshadowed by watching Mack attempt to establish a bond with their golden retriever Howie who "is like, 'Ugh, you're still here,'" joked Andrews. Or marveling as he pulls himself to standing in his crib. 

"He's starting to get a personality," she said. "Apparently he's very strong-willed and strong-minded. We were on a conference call with the Dallas Cowboys during the playoffs and Mike McCarthy, the head coach, said to me, 'How's he doing?' I said, 'He's really vocal,' and he's like, 'Wonder where he got that from?'" 

As for what he'll inherited from his Daddy, "My husband can't wait to get him on hockey skates," said Andrews, sharing Stoll has also stared wistfully at the tiny skiers they've spied outside their vacation home in Montana. "Obviously the sporty kind of stuff we're looking forward to." 

Brent Broza for Enfamil Enspire Optimum

And though he's still months away from his first birthday, Mack has already enjoyed a film session or two. 

In the weeks after his June arrival, as Andrews was feeding him, "we would watch training camp together," she recounted. "And I was like, Oh my God, this is a dream."