“We just run ourselves ragged” Sienna Miller on “the curse of motherhood” and sisterhood

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Sejal Kapadia Pocha

Between raising her three-year-old daughter Marlowe and juggling her career successes, having starred in Oscar-nominated film American Sniper and crime-drama Foxcatcher, Sienna Miller has had a busy 12 months.  

“It's been really quite overwhelming recently, just with the volume of everything going on,” the actress says in the October issue of British Vogue. She explains how she's learnt that a desired work life balance is not necessarily achievable. 

“Everything is shifting. It's actually been the shittiest year, and amazing. It's always yin and yang. I feel like if you're excelling in one area, it's hard to manage both and I do feel like the work is going really well.

“Obviously when you have a baby it's the most incredible experience but your life is also catapulted into this chaos and you are exhausted. I could literally get on this table and fall asleep,” she continues.

“I'd like to be better at managing things; I'd like to be more super - although we're never going to feel it, even if we are. That's the curse of motherhood - we just run ourselves ragged. I'm just trying to get a sense of what that guilt is. I sometimes feel like it's a totally invented emotion. It's strange to be punishing ourselves this way. It's not healthy.”

Tom Sturridge and Sienna Miller at the Oscars in February this year

Tom Sturridge and Sienna Miller at the Oscars in February this year

The actress, 33, who's engaged to Marlowe's father and British actor Tom Sturridge, also spoke about her relationship with her mother and sister Savannah Read. 

“I'm really close to them, they are hugely important and influential women in my life, but of course we drive each other nuts as well!”

Meanwhile, Savannah has also spoken about how close she is to her younger sister. “We borrow inspiration from each other and each other’s clothes. I am constantly in her wardrobe which must drive her nuts. But then she will be like,‘Damn where did you get that from?’” she tells The Telegraph. (Speaking about her own wardrobe, Sienna says, “I don't remember the last time I went shopping. I swear to God, I wear jeans and trainers and a T-shirt most days.”)

“There is no rivalry between us at all though. We are incredibly close,” continues Savannah. “Our parents got divorced when we were young. We were shipped about a bit. The thing that was consistent was ‘us’. We are partners in crime.”

Sienna and Savannah Miller in November 2014

Sienna and Savannah Miller in November 2014

The designer spoke about her own struggles, having almost lost her eldest son in a boat accident during a family holiday (his leg was cut to the bone after getting sucked into the propellers), suffered post-natal depression after her third son was born and been forced to close her fashion business, sell her family home in Gloucestershire and move to Panama when her financial backers lost money. The 36-year-old described it as her “own personal disaster movie”.

“I lost everything, which was really tough,” she says. “I was having panic attacks and I couldn’t go on. I had to stop. I just had to stop - everything was too much. I left Panama to go and see a therapist in New York because I was convinced I was having a nervous breakdown and she said 'you had post natal depression, you need to get out of Panama.’”

“There are lots of really strong women who never let their guard down, ever, and I was one of those women and it’s important (to talk about these things), right?”

“You have this illusion that it’s going to be children frolicking on the beach and climbing coconut trees, but mostly it is an illusion. I think it’s very good for me to have dispelled that myth, because now I have so much determination for what I do.”

Images: Rex Features

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Sejal Kapadia Pocha

Sejal Kapadia Pocha covers stories about everything from women’s issues to cult foods. She describes herself as a balance between Hermione and Luna Lovegood.

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