After a Miscarriage

Candy Spilman By Candy Spilman, 18th Feb 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/jnphgwra/
Posted in Wikinut>Family>Bereavement

An early miscarriage is often viewed as “not a big deal” – simply the expulsion of a mass of unformed tissue. Women who have suffered this fate may disagree. While grieving for the lost child, these bereft mothers may find that they do not get the support they need from family and friends.

Miscarriage - is it a big deal?

Nearly everyone can agree that one of life’s most heartbreaking events is a funeral with a tiny casket. A bereaved mother in this situation is likely to be showered with love and sympathy, and everyone understands her tears and grief. She is usually not expected to bounce back any time soon, and allowed to take time to mourn.

On the other hand, ten to twenty five percent of all pregnancies end in a miscarriage during the first twenty weeks, with most occurring during the first three months. Often, a new mommy has just learned that she was pregnant and excitedly begun to make plans when complications set in that result in loss of the new life. Unfortunately, in many cases, these women are not given support and understanding during their time of need. In fact, others may not even realize that there is truly a reason for her to grieve.

How to help someone else

If you know someone who has suffered a miscarriage, understand that this is a real loss. Even if the baby did not develop past the embryonic stage, it was a life. Its mother had hopes and dreams, and imagined holding the child in her arms countless times. She does not want to hear, “Don’t worry – you’ll have another one!” She is mourning the loss of this one, and needs support. The father of the baby is likely to be struggling as well. Besides coping with his own feeling of loss, he is often attempting to be strong in a situation where he feels out of control and unsure of what he is supposed to do next.

To comfort someone who has lost an unborn child, take your cue from him or her. The best first step to take is a simple, “I’m sorry for your loss”, and maybe a hug. Perhaps bring over a meal. If either one wants to open up and talk, listen; otherwise the couple will at least know that you care, and that their loss has been recognized.

Coping with your own loss

If you have lost a baby, allow yourself time to grieve. Do not let others provide the time schedule when you are expected to “get over it”. You have lost a child. In some ways it is not as heartbreaking as losing a fully formed baby, but in other ways it is more so. You did not get to hold your baby, or see what he or she would look like. You do not even know if you had a boy or a girl.

After a miscarriage, you may also suffer from postpartum depression. You may be terrified of the same outcome should you get pregnant again. People may not understand your worries or concerns – if you cannot find anyone you can confide in, you may want to seek professional counseling.

One thing to keep in mind is that even though the baby did not grow to maturity and live, you are still, and always will be, that child’s mother (or father). Do whatever makes you feel better with that knowledge. Some may choose to simply let it go and not be reminded. Others may decide to name the unborn child; get a tattoo commemorating the short life; write a letter, poem, et cetera. Whatever you do should be your own choice, and should help bring closure and comfort.

Tags

Grief, Loss, Miscarriage, Pregnancy

Meet the author

author avatar Candy Spilman
Former journalist turned freelancer. I'm a mom and grandma and love to write about family or Christian topics.

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Comments

author avatar Phyl Campbell
19th Feb 2014 (#)

A pro-choice stance does not mean a person is unfeeling when a woman miscarries. That aside, I am sorry for any loss you may be grieving, and hope you or the woman/women you wrote this article for find peace.

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author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
19th Feb 2014 (#)

Written with feeling that does full justice to the grieving mother's anguish, Candy. The father too feels the loss all his life - siva

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author avatar Stella Mitchell
20th Feb 2014 (#)

Bless you Candy for showing us a glimpse of your grief and your loss.
I sincerely pray you will find comfort by sharing this , and others will experience the same from reading your article .I hope you go on to have more children to fill your heart .
Many blessings
Stella ><

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author avatar Candy Spilman
21st Feb 2014 (#)

I appreciate the comments - I have edited this article, implementing the suggestions made here.

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author avatar Phern
5th Mar 2014 (#)

I so much agree. I have set on both spectrums of losing a child. One by miscarriage, another from the death of my murdered 18 year old. Although the grief from the miscarriage didn't last as long, the depth of pain was even though I wasn't necessarily excited about being pregnant at the time, it left an unexplainable level of grief and despair.

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author avatar Candy Spilman
17th Mar 2014 (#)

I'm so sorry for your tragic losses, Phern.

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