Michael Brunelli reveals how Martha Kalifatidis’ horrendous morning sickness almost ‘destroyed the couple’
The 31-year-old reality star revealed that his future wife Martha, 34, has been experiencing hyperemesis gravidarum, an extreme form of morning sickness, while carrying their first child.
In a piece for Body & Soul, the personal trainer shared that looking after Martha has caused him to ditch healthy habits, lose muscle and gain weight.
Married at First Sight star Michael Brunelli has revealed how his fiancée Martha Kalifatidis’ morning sickness ‘nearly destroyed the couple’
The 31-year-old reality star revealed that his future wife Martha, 34, has been experiencing hyperemesis gravidarum, an extreme form of morning sickness, while carrying their first child
‘Not to say we aren’t eternally grateful to have been able to become pregnant, but this experience has almost destroyed us, individually,’ he wrote before explaining that Martha’s health rapidly declined after falling pregnant earlier this year.
Michael explained that at first he thought her symptoms were normal, but as the weeks went on her discomfort became ‘extreme’.
‘She was vomiting, refused to eat, couldn’t tolerate drinking water, was nauseous 24 hours a day and unable to get out of bed,’
‘By week nine of the pregnancy Martha had lost 10kg, was taking multiple medications and regularly needed an IV drip in hospital to stay hydrated,’ he wrote.
Michael explained that at first he thought her symptoms were normal, but as the weeks went on her discomfort became ‘extreme’
Michael stopped working as a personal trainer to look after his future wife – but saw his mental and physical health decline too.
‘I stopped exercising, lost the care for what I was eating, I was stuck in my own head and not present. I had zero motivation, zero willpower, zero self-care and zero energy. I lost a lot of muscle, gained weight, slept poorly and my overall health declined,’ he added.
Fortunately, Martha’s illness subsided at 22 weeks, with her now able to return to daily activities and Michael returning to work.
Martha Kalifatidis (pictured) has been open about her journey with hyperemesis gravidarum
Earlier this year, Martha disappeared offline for several weeks, leading to concerns for her well-being.
The couple eventually revealed she was ill with hyperemesis gravidarum, which causes persistent and excessive nausea and vomiting in pregnant women.
The couple explained they had to wait until Martha was feeling better and had reached a safe point in her pregnancy before sharing their news.
The couple also shared harrowing videos from Martha’s multiple hospital and doctor visits
In one clip, the couple are seen talking to each other in a room about Martha’s excruciating pain as she starts to doubt herself. ‘I don’t know if I wanna do it. I don’t know if I can,’ she says
‘We wanted to explain our situation and make a little bit of an announcement. Martha is pregnant,’ Michael said in a video at the time.
‘It hasn’t been this exciting, wonderful time for us. I don’t want to sound like I’m complaining,’ Martha added.
‘I was so sick. I could not eat or drink anything. There were days I didn’t even get up to pee. I lost ten kilos in five weeks.
‘We have been in and out of the emergency room and hospital’.
The couple also shared harrowing videos from Martha’s multiple hospital and doctor visits.
‘I don’t know, Michael, if I’m going to survive,’ Martha says in one clip, to which her husband-to-be replies: ‘You will.’
‘I don’t know. I don’t know if I wanna do it. I don’t know if I can,’ Martha continues.
‘I don’t know how you’re feeling,’ he says. ‘But we’re gonna get through it.’
In his caption, Michael expressed his heartache and admitted he’d been feeling ‘completely helpless’ during Martha’s illness.
He said Martha had spent the ‘best part of the last 10 weeks in bed 24 hours a day, dehydrated, nauseous, vomiting, restless, tired, anxious, fatigued and unable to properly sleep or eat’.
Despite visiting the hospital on multiple occasions, receiving medical advice and being prescribed different medications, she has still be suffering with the sickness.
‘But she is a f**king warrior! And so is every other woman that is diagnosed with HG [hyperemesis gravidarum] or any pregnancy-related condition,’ Michael added.
What is hyperemesis gravidarum?
Hyperemesis gravidarum (HG) is a condition that causes persistent and excessive vomiting during pregnancy.
Sufferers can be sick lots of times every day and be unable to keep food or water down, impacting their daily life.
It is unlikely to harm the baby, but if it causes a women to lose weight during pregnancy there is an increased risk their baby will have a low birth weight.
It is different to sickness during pregnancy — often called morning sickness — which is normal and affects eight in 10 pregnant women. For most, this stops or improves around weeks 16 to 20.
Meanwhile, HG may not get better by this point and can last until the baby is born.
Symptoms of HG include prolonged and severe nausea and vomiting, being dehydrated, weight loss and low blood pressure.
Being dehydrated raises the risk of having a blood clot — deep vein thrombosis — but this is rare.
It is not clear what causes the condition, or why some women get it and others don’t.
Some experts think it may be linked to the changing hormones in the body that occurs during pregnancy.
And there is some evidence that it runs in families and women who suffered it during their first pregnancy are more likely to have in any subsequent pregnancies.
Women suffering from HG can be given medicine to improve their symptoms, such as anti-sickness drugs, vitamins B6 and B12 and steroids.
Some women have to be admitted to hospital if their nausea cannot be controlled with medicines at home.
They may require fluids and anti-sickness drugs to be administered through an IV.