articles / Pregnancy

Facing people after pregnancy loss pt. 1

**Once again, just to clarify — my little lemon is just fine.**

It’s kind of interesting that at the end of my 14th week of pregnancy, I feel led to take a moment and write a few posts about pregnancy loss. I’ve known many women who have lost babies in the past and women who are desperately trying to have that baby after facing one or more losses. Interestingly enough, I’ve “met” many women through these blogs that are dealing with this loss too.ploss

Yesterday I posted about how to come to terms with a miscarriage — or at least how I came to terms with my miscarriages. Yesterday’s post was mostly about how to try and work through the feelings and the pain and learning how to move on with life. A big part of pregnancy loss though is dealing with other people during this time.

People who’ve never gone through this don’t know how to respond when they hear about a miscarriage. They just don’t know unless they’ve been there. Honestly, I don’t think we can expect them too. Miscarriages are so looked over in much of society as just being a fluke or it wasn’t a baby yet anyway (to which I say BULL CRAP) — until recent years women didn’t talk about miscarriages because they were ashamed or afraid of ridicule.

Every time I’ve gotten pregnant, we’ve pretty much told everyone right away (except for this pregnancy). With my first miscarried pregnancy I posted it on Facebook within an hour of peeing on the stick. Needless to say, I’ve had to tell the world on three different occasions that my baby had died.

Many women wait to tell people whether they’ve miscarried or not. A lot of women choose to wait to tell people if they’ve had a miscarriage. My feeling always was if I lose this baby, I don’t want he/she to be forgotten. I don’t want to have hidden them from the world and have to hide my pain.

With my chemical pregnancy, because we didn’t know until I started miscarrying that I was pregnant, there were only a few people that knew (close friends and family). With all the others I had to post that message on Facebook sharing the bad news.

I never advertised my grief, but honestly it made me feel better to get it out in such a public place because I didn’t have to go through telling everyone individually.

The thing is though, I don’t think any woman is prepared for some of the responses people have to the sad news. Most people want to be helpful and want to say something to make the woman feel better, they just don’t know how.

Here are a few things I’ve heard in the past from people trying to be helpful:

  • Maybe it just wasn’t time yet — While this may be true in some degree, that doesn’t mean it’s helpful to hear while still feeling the pain of loss.
  • At least you already have a child — Yes, because I already had a child at home that was supposed to make the loss of my baby easier. I figure they were trying to help me see “the bright side,” but there isn’t much of a bright side to losing a baby — no matter how old.
  • You can always have another — After my first loss I heard this a few times. Sadly, we found out that I couldn’t just “have another one.” Instead, we lost four more. Of course, now I’m having another one, but that doesn’t replace the four I lost.
  • There was probably something wrong with the baby, so it’s better it happened now — Uh, actually, it would have been better if my baby would have been perfectly healthy is normally what I’m thinking when I hear that. Yes, it’s scientifically true that most early miscarriages are due to defects, but that’s not what a woman mourning the loss of her baby wants to hear.

There are many many more comments I’ve heard, but these are the most common that I’ve heard throughout the past few years. The thing is, when a woman is facing this loss, as many of you know, there is nothing that can be said to make you feel better in that time of grief. Many people say, “I’m sorry for your loss,” and that’s OK. They’re not magic words, but they’re not hurtful either.

All I wanted to hear was that people loved me and that they were there for me if I needed them. I just wanted to know that if I needed to call someone up and cry for a while, that they’d be there to listen. That’s all. No reaffirming words of future pregnancies or anything like that — I just wanted a hug and someone to listen to my pain.


One thought on “Facing people after pregnancy loss pt. 1

  1. Thank you. I love this. What I learned during my miscarriage was the SO many of my friends and family had had one before! And I never knew! You are right, I guess people don’t always advertise it. I was of the feeling that I would tell people I was pregnant after the 1st trimester, but when I learned (around week 6 or 7), that things weren’t looking good, I began to tell, mostly for prayer. And honestly, I am SO glad I did. I had so much love and encouragement and I did not have to face the loss alone. Yes, it sucked to have to ‘go back’ and tell them I lost it, but it helped so much. Everyone was genuinely sorry and sympathetic and caring, and that REALLY helped.

    Not sure how I will handle the next one (God willing), but I don’t think it is the worst thing in the world to tell right away. Because, even if you lose it, people can at least offer comfort and support and be at least a little sensitive to you while you grieve, rather than if they knew nothing at all.

    Thanks for posting this!!! All the best for your new blessing along the way!

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