Boy band icons Jonathan Knight and Lance Bass had a poignant conversation about coming out in the industry, and trying to start families as gay men, during an episode of Bass’ new podcast Frosted Tips.
The singers shared that they both experienced heartache throughout their fertility journeys — Knight, 54, with his husband Harley Rodriguez, and Bass, 43, with his husband Michael Turchin. After a years-long process, Bass and Turchin welcomed twins — Alexander and Violet — in October 2021, but Knight and Rodriguez weren’t as fortunate.
"We tried it. We went through the journey for about five years, and it just didn't happen for us," Knight of New Kids on the Block fame told *NSYNC’s Bass and guest co-host Joey Fatone of his own journey to fatherhood. "Going through the process, like, 'Today's the day the eggs are being implanted.’ You're so excited, and you're so happy. And then, you know, a week later it's like, 'No, you're back to square one.'"
Knight said “95% of our gay friends now have kids,” and that he learned about the fertility process for gay couples through those friends.
“You can go to an agency and you can get a surrogate and you can have eggs donated, and all that stuff. And it was like, ‘Okay, that all makes sense,’” Knight explained, adding that, “scientifically,” it felt weird yet great that he would be able to have kids.
Knight, who now stars on his own HGTV show Farmhouse Fixer, went on to say that it was hard when a pregnancy didn’t come to fruition, especially considering friends like Bass were welcoming babies of their own.
Bass then acknowledged that his own journey took years and that he and Turchin went through 10 egg donors. Each time it didn’t work out, it was “so depressing,” he admitted
"No one understands that emotional journey," Bass shared. "Because, you know, it took us almost five years to have our kids and I don't know how many times y'all were able to get pregnant, but we were pregnant, you know, a few years ago with twins and lost one at three weeks and one at six weeks."
He continued, "You're like, 'God, we have to start over again,' and if this didn't happen this last time, I don't think we would have gone for it again. I did think that was the universe saying, ‘You know what? You're not supposed to have kids’ ... but, you know, you're meant to have what you're meant to have."
Knight added that the process of “swiping” through egg donor profiles and considering a woman’s age, nationality, and medical history is “really weird,” let alone discussing the genetic composition of each possible embryo.
“But at the same time, it’s such a blessing that we’re at that point where we have these incredible resources, this medical, um,” Knight paused.
“Medical wonder,” Bass chimed in.
The boy banders said that they hope in vitro fertilization (IVF) becomes more affordable in the future so “everyone could be able to experience that and to have that [opportunity].”
They then joked that if they were a part of heteronormative couples, they could probably just have sex, get pregnant, and save some money. Fatone then added that, no matter the situation, medical bills for childbirth and fertility options are always expensive.
And ain’t that the truth.