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Keira Knightley insists she didn't mean to 'shame' Kate Middleton with her graphic birth story

Mirror logo Mirror 12/10/2018 Laura Martin
Keira Knightley, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge are posing for a picture: Keira Knightley said she didn't shame Kate Middleton © Getty Keira Knightley said she didn't shame Kate Middleton

Keira Knightley has responded to claims that she "shamed" Kate Middleton over setting a false and unrealistic expectation for new mums after giving birth.

In her contribution to the book Feminists Don't Wear Pink (And Other Lies), the actress described watching the Duchess of Cambridge leaving hospital with Princess Charlotte in high heels and make-up the day after she gave birth to her own daughter, and said Kate showed "the face the world wants to see".

But now Keira insists she didn't mean to slam the royal with her essay called The Weaker Sex.

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Arriving at the premiere of her new film Colette at the BFI London Film Festival, she said: "I think it's very interesting that certain parts of the media have, I don't want to say purposefully, but let's just say misrepresented my meaning and exactly what I said.

Prince William, Duke of Cambridge et al. standing next to a fence: Another royal rule has come to light - and it's to do with the young children © AFP Another royal rule has come to light - and it's to do with the young children

"I would suggest to those people in the media that they re-read the entirety of the essay and not just take one bit out of it because the comments that I made are completely about our culture that silences women's truths and forces us all to hide, and I absolutely did not shame anybody in any way, in fact quite the opposite.

"I would say to everybody there is a wonderful book out at the moment, it's called Feminists Don't Wear Pink (And Other Lies) and I suggest if you want to know about this then you should actually read the essay and all the others in the book, and the wonderful thing is that all the proceeds go to Girl Up, which is a phenomenal UN foundation which gives money to organisations that are supporting girls' education, girls' safety and girls' leadership in developing countries."

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, Prince William, Duke of Cambridge standing in front of a building © Credits: Getty Images Prince William

Writing an essay called The Weaker Sex, Keira hit out at the impossible standard portrayed by “perfect” Kate, as the Duchess of Cambridge, 36, stepped outside the hospital fully groomed, just hours after giving birth to each of her three children.

Keira, 33, wrote: "We stand and watch the TV screen.

"[Kate] was out of hospital seven hours later with her face made up and high heels on. The face the world wants to see.

Video: Keira Knightley slams Kate Middleton’s post-birth style (FOX News)

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"Hide. Hide our pain, our bodies splitting, our breasts leaking, our hormones raging.

"Look beautiful. Look stylish, don’t show your battleground, Kate. Seven hours after your fight with life and death, seven hours after your body breaks open, and bloody, screaming life comes out.

She continued: "Don’t show. Don’t tell. Stand there with your girl and be shot by a pack of male photographers."

Keira Knightley and woman posing for a photo © Credits: Getty Images North America

Keira - who gave birth to daughter Edie in 2015, believes women need to be far more honest about the brutal truth of childbirth, and didn’t hold back when describing her experiences for the book Feminists Don't Wear Pink (and Other Lies).

“My vagina split. You came out with your eyes open. Arms up in the air.

"Screaming. They put you on to me, covered in blood, vernix, your head misshapen from the birth canal. Pulsating, gasping, screaming."

She explained the discomfort of breastfeeding too: "You latched on to my breast immediately, hungrily, I remember the pain. The mouth clenched tight around my nipple, light sucking on and sucking out.

Keira Knightley in a blue shirt © Credits: Splash Keira Knightley

"I remember the s**t, the vomit, the blood, the stitches. I remember my battleground. Your battleground and life pulsating. Surviving. And I am the weaker sex? You are?"

Keira - who recently revealed she suffered from PTSD aged 22 - finished with a plea to see the strength of women within - and to reject double standards.

She said: "I turn up on time, word perfect, with ideas and an opinion. I am up with you [her daughter] all night if you need me. Sometimes I cry I'm so tired. Up with you all night and work all day... My male colleagues can be late, cannot know their lines.

"They can shout and scream and throw things. They can turn up drunk or not turn up at all. They don't see their children. They're working. They need to concentrate," she added.

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