LENDING A HAND Stone walks in the park with sons Laird, far left, and Quinn in
April 2011, and participates in a humanitarian mission to Uganda in 2009.
getting pregnant in the traditional way, they also met with
attorneys to start the adoption process. Stone, who has a
lupus-related rheumatoid factor that can cause problems
in sustaining a pregnancy, had suffered a miscarriage some
years earlier and, with Bronstein, endured two more, both
at five months.
The sad memories bring tears to her eyes. “The last time I
lost the baby,” she says, “I went into 36 hours of labor. While
we were at the hospital, our adoption attorney called.”
Bronstein and Stone returned the call on their way home
and learned that they’d been approved to adopt an infant.
“I thought, ‘This is such a godsend,’” Stone says. “‘This is
so right.’ ” When Roan Joseph Bronstein was born on June
1, 2000, Sharon Stone finally became a mother.
Her brain hemorrhage—doctors were unable to deter-
mine the cause—occurred 15 months later. She spent the
next eight months in bed. “I came out of the hospital with
short- and long-term memory loss,” says Stone. “My lower
left leg was numb. I couldn’t hear out of my right ear. The
side of my face was falling down. I thought, ‘I’ll never be
pretty again. Who’s going to want to be around me?’ ”
Her arduous recovery period was complicated by prob-
lems in her marriage. Stone says she can’t pinpoint when
they began nor what caused them. “He just didn’t see me,
talk to me, look at me,” she says of Bronstein. She now be-
lieves “his initial intention with me was probably corrupt.
I was suckered. I’m embarrassed to say that.”
Stone was invited to serve on the jury at the Cannes Film
Festival in May 2002. “Going into an environment of film,
which I knew and where I felt supported, really, really
helped,” she says.
But her most difficult struggle was yet to come. In 2003,
Bronstein filed for divorce (he has since remarried and has
two children with his new wife), and Stone moved back
to Los Angeles, where on her own she adopted Laird in
May of 2005, then Quinn in June of 2006. Bronstein and
Stone initially shared custody of Roan, settling on a two-
year rotation with each parent. But a San Francisco judge
awarded Bronstein primary physical custody in 2008, rul-
ing that it would be disruptive to move the boy from his Bay
Area community back to Los Angeles to live with Stone.
Offering an explanation for how she lost the battle for her
son, Stone says, “I had had a brain hemorrhage and was an
actress who had made sexy movies.” She forces a laugh. But
the ordeal brought her, literally, to her knees. “I would go
to these [philanthropic] events where I had to get on stage.
I would be in the wings, with people looking at me, my head
on the floor, praying: ‘God, please help me. I know I have
to go out there and raise money. But I’ve lost my child, I’ve
lost my health, I’ve lost everything.’ I was just broken.”
Healing came from helping others. Stone points to her
father for inspiring her philanthropic instincts. “My
dad always wanted to make sure people were cared for,”
Stone says. Before flying to Los Angeles for cancer treat-
ments 10 years ago, he shoveled the snow off several of
his neighbors’ driveways. (Later he and Dorothy moved
into Stone’s guesthouse in the Hollywood Hills, where
Joseph died two years ago, his daughter by his bedside.)
“I was lucky to have my dad in my life,” Stone says quietly.
“As crazy as things got, I always had him to put his hand
on my shoulder.” (CONTINUED ON PAGE 63)
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