“It was brutal, sitting on the sidelines." Matty J on Laura Byrne's 'complicated' labour.


From the outside looking in, it’s easy to feel like Matty Johnson and Laura Byrne have the whole ‘new parents’ thing down pat.

Not only is their daughter Marlie-Mae extremely photogenic, but followers of The Bachelor alumni couple would know they’re currently on an overseas holiday and managed a long-haul flight with a three-month-old like it was nothing.

That said, both Byrne and Johnson are very open about their journey to becoming parents, and their story is not as shiny as their Instagram feeds.

In a new interview with Stellar, the couple spoke in greater detail about their complicated birth story.


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Byrne had an induced labour at 41 weeks pregnant, and complications meant she wasn’t able to have the ‘natural’ birth she thought she would.

“I was in labour and I didn’t get a break. It was just a constant contraction. So after about an hour I was like, f**k this. Give me all the drugs,” the 33-year-old told the publication.

“It was like night and day, going from being curled over the bed throwing up in agony to sitting up having a chat. I was so off my rocket.”

It wasn’t until later into her labour doctors realised Marlie-Mae was in a posterior position, causing the baby’s heart rate to drop significantly.

“She was stuck; they needed to get her out immediately. So there were complications and it wasn’t the easiest of births. But I was just so happy that she was out and in the world that my memory of it is not traumatic.”

Johnson also spoke of how difficult he found the birth, being a bystander to his partner’s pain.

“It was brutal, sitting on the sidelines watching her get belted like that. I’m going, ‘This is not how I thought it would work,'” the 32-year-old said.


“I just wanted to help you as best I could. But there is nothing you can really do other than, like, calling a midwife and holding your hand.”

Byrne has previously spoken about her birth experience on her podcast Life Uncut with co-host Brittany Hockley.

“They don’t call it labour for no reason – it is definitely very painful. I originally wanted to do a natural birth but I ended up having to opt for an epidural because I couldn’t manage my pain expectations.”


“Although everyone does have a very different pain threshold. I was induced and I think if you go into spontaneous labour, it’s a very different experience. It was right at the brink of my pain threshold.”

Back in June just days after the birth, Johnson described watching Byrne in labour on his radio show.

“It’s awful watching your partner going through so much pain and you can’t do anything except hold their hand and kiss their forehead and tell them it’s going to be okay,” he said.

“The only thing you want as a parent is to have a healthy child. It was really quite scary in the final moments when Laura was giving those final pushes, thankfully we didn’t have any major complications.”

Byrne and Johnson have also spoken honestly about what it was like falling pregnant after experiencing a miscarriage. The couple told the Daily Telegraph they were instinctively cautious upon finding out they had conceived, having miscarried in June, 2017.

“When you’ve had a miscarriage, you worry if there is something wrong with you,” Byrne said. “It is not something that people really talk about but actually one in four pregnancies end that way, you just don’t hear about it.”

“It definitely changed my ability to enjoy this pregnancy, with Marlie. I think I spent a lot of time fearful that I was going to have a miscarriage and any time there was something that seemed wrong, my first thought was ‘it’s happening again’.


“It wasn’t until I made it to the sixth or seventh month part that I really got into [loving being pregnant.]”

You can listen to Laura Byrne’s take on life after The Bachelor, and being an influencer and mum on the Social Squad podcast below. Post continues after audio.

Now, the couple are navigating the ups and downs of new parenthood, which includes fun things like “cleaning vomit and dirty nappies” and “poonamis”, as well as deciding how much of their daughter’s life to share with their social media followers.

“We are going to create an Instagram account for her, but it will be completely private for our family and friends. We share a very curated version of her online with things we are both comfortable with, but there is a lot a stuff we wouldn’t put up about Marlie,” Byrne told Mamamia’s Social Squad podcast.

“I really struggle with [the idea of sharenting] and Matt and I have spoken about it a lot because she can’t give consent. Yes, it’s my life, but she is not of an age where she can turn around a say ‘yeah mum, I want my life to be public’. When she hits an age when she can make those decisions, we’ll reconsider.”

Does Matty J and Laura Byrne’s birth story resonate with you? Tell us your thoughts in the comments!