“It’s very often, if not probably on a daily basis that I cry with strangers, whether it’s in a bathroom or in the chip aisle at Target,” Metz told Us Weekly exclusively at Dress for Success’s holiday event on Thursday, November 30, in Westwood, California. “Whether they’ve adopted a new baby, or there’s a high school friend I recently went and saw during Thanksgiving, and his wife had triplets and they lost one of the babies. Just when you think the show is too far-fetched, it’s like, no, people are actually living these stories.”
“It’s so great that a piece of art can relate to so many different lives,” Metz continued. “Then it opens up discussion and we can say ‘I’ve never talked about a miscarriage before,’ ‘I’ve never talked about losing a child before, how do I do it?’ It’s like, just do it, I’m here for you and when you remove that fear, when you educate someone, when you show them that other people are experiencing it too, the fear goes away and becomes easier to talk about.”
For Metz, who is currently dating This Is Us cameraman Josh Stancil, playing Kate on the NBC series as the character copes with the loss of her unborn child has helped the Florida native navigate conversations about the experience in her own life. “I had a family member who went through a miscarriage and we got a chance to talk about it when I was home for the holidays,” she told Us. “It was something I could never talk to her about because I didn’t know how. I didn’t know if she wanted to talk about it, I wanted to leave it up to her. It was really amazing that the show that I’m in has brought my family together about this really hard life event that many women go through, one in five women will go through, sometimes more than that, multiple miscarriages. It’s not something that you’ve done or that you’re inadequate, it’s nature. It’s really kind of amazing that my life is full circle in that way.”
Following the devastating experience for Kate and Toby (Chris Sullivan), Metz is optimistic that the couple will come out even stronger as they move on. “She chatted about, to Toby at the end of the episode, that she does want to try again. Not right away, but there is that hope and that it’s not about what life gives you but it’s how you react to it,” she explained. “I think that’s sort of the whole premise of our show, whether it’s paternity, race issues, or dealing with a family illness, that we’re going to get through this all together. It might not be perfect, but we’re going to do it together, and that’s sort of the continuing through-line between Toby and Kate’s relationship.”
This Is Us returns on January 2 and airs on NBC Tuesdays at 9 p.m.