Loss and Miscarriage

Sometimes loss is sadly a part of pregnancy and it's often a dark topic that nobody wants to talk about and you become a part of a secret society that no one wants to be in.

I debated on doing a post on miscarriage and loss because the whole point of this site is not to scare pregnant women. That said, I seriously doubt that the worry of loss hasn’t crossed any of your minds.

Sometimes loss is sadly a part of pregnancy and it’s often a dark topic that nobody wants to talk about and you become a part of a secret society that no one wants to be in.

Around 1 in 4 known pregnancies end in miscarriage which means it’s still a pretty common occurrence.

When you think about it, every single baby that is born is a miracle. A fucking miracle. When you think of how many things fall into place to make that little person, it truly is incredible and a wonderful thing. And when the pieces don’t fall into place it can be a devastating experience for the people looking forward to that little person being a part of their lives.

Whenever I hear that someone has miscarried the first thing I think is “I’m so sorry for their loss”, the second thing I think is “I hope people don’t accidentally say stupid shit to them”. Things like:

It wasn’t meant to be. It doesn’t cut it when they are out of your shoe size and it sure as hell doesn’t cut it when you’ve lost a baby.

It was God’s plan. A few people may find comfort in this statement but most would be downright offended so I would never throw that one out there.

You can have more. They are mourning THAT baby not any baby. I’m sad when they forget my side of fries so can you imagine what it’s like when someone finds out they aren’t going to have a whole person in their lives anymore?

It was probably from all your _______ (stress, jumping, eating, breathing, etc). Even if she was shooting heroin in the Ultimate Fighter Championship cage how on earth does someone think it would be any comfort to anyone to blame her for her loss? It is shitty and they should expect to be put in a guillotine choke hold for throwing that one out there.

At least you have your other children. So if someone has three children, they’d be willing to ditch one or two? Or how about, “Don’t worry that your arm and ear is missing because you have extra ones.”? Nope, not a good thing to say.

This isn’t bad, so-and-so had three miscarriages. Anything crappy can more than likely be trumped by someone else’s crappy but it doesn’t make the person feel better it just makes them feel like they aren’t entitled to feeling bad. They are.

You need to ________ (get on with your life, concentrate on the children you already have, whittle wooden whistles, etc). It’s one thing to suggest things that might get the loss off their mind but it’s another thing to tell them how to mourn. Some people hold it all in. Some people bawl and want to talk about it. Some people want to crawl in bed and feel like shit. None of them are wrong.

At least you weren’t that far along. If I won the lottery, I would have it mentally spent in about 20 minutes. These couples have had weeks, if not months, to think about a baby that isn’t going to happen now. Saying something like that is just undermining their loss.

When it all comes down to it, I know that people say these things because they are trying to make the person feel better and they don’t mean to be hurtful. On the flip side, people who avoid someone who has miscarried because they’re afraid to step in it, isn’t being helpful either.

I truly think one of the best things anyone can do when they find out someone has lost a baby is to listen. You can hear how they are grieving and see if there is anyway to help them, then help.

Some of the things that I think would be better to say and do:

  • I’m so sorry for your loss.
  • I had a miscarriage too. Let me know if you ever want to talk about it.
  • I don’t know what to say but I’m here for you and I want to help.
  • Do you want to talk about it?
  • Offer to help with housework, babysitting, meals, etc.
  • Call and check in because the pain doesn’t go away in a couple days.

If all else fails, stick it in a card if you’re too worried you’re going panic and put your foot in your mouth. The whole point to let the person know that they are being thought of and that they aren’t alone.

As for all you pregnant ladies, I can’t tell you not to worry because you probably will anyway but I can tell you that in researching this site, I’m finding there isn’t a heck of a lot you can do to change the outcome of a pregnancy — most of the no-nos just “turn the screws” a little one way or the other. Sometimes they stick and sometimes they don’t, and it’s shitty when they don’t.

There is nothing we can do to guarantee we all get a healthy baby so that is all the more reason to rejoice when we do get one of those screaming, pooing, hungry little miracles.

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  • I went to my first OB/sonogram appointment after 1.5 weeks of heavy bleeding. I had already been to the hospital 1.5 weeks earlier because of the bleeding and was told that some women do bleed and the fetus was viable on the ultrasound. At my sonogram appointment, the tech said “Are you sure you are even pregnant?” I responded with “Yes, I have already been to the hospital because of heavy bleeding, and had pregnancy confirmation.” Knowing in my gut that I had been having a miscarriage I was already in tears, yet she proceeded to torture me and ask me what date did they see a viable fetus because, there are no signs of pregnancy and there has to be a mistake……I finally responded to her questions “There is no mistake I was pregnant and I have miscarried.” I of course let administration know….That was a year ago today and now I’m 29 weeks pregnant with a little boy. NOTHING can be said or done to make the experience easier, but there is hope to those who miscarry!

  • Brilliant article, and so so true. We lost our first at 8 weeks and it really was the worst thing I have ever had to go through, it shocked me how common it really was. I decided to open up about it and write an article for my blog, the responses and number of people who told me they had been through it too was shocking, but it also helped others, so I am so glad I wrote it. We are now at almost 23 weeks pregnant thankfully and cant wait for our bean to arrive

    Here is the post incase anyone wants to read http://twoheartsoneroof.com/2015/10/breaking-the-taboo-of-miscarriage-our-story/

  • Thank you for this. This is one of the hardest topics to write about because as you said, you don’t want to scare pregnant women, but the truth is, miscarriage is an unfortunate reality that many of us face. I have sat on my own story of my molar pregnancy loss for 2 years, but last week, I set me story free and shared it with the world. It felt like the right thing to do…as a sort of memorial to my lost child but most importantly, as a relatable piece for another woman to read and feel understood and less alone. After 2 years of writing this, I believe this story is bigger than me and meant to be shared and related to…here it is: http://www.relativeredhead.com/february-2014-the-winter-i-lost-you-part-one/

    Thanks for sharing this story with the world.

  • Another stinger I was told: "Well, at least you know you can get pregnant." I know they were just trying to be helpful, but that was a sucky thing to hear. What use is the ability to get pregnant if I can’t have an outside baby?

    Really, truly, "I’m sorry" is perfect.

  • thanks for this post, but people (including you) act like that’s the only thing that can go wrong. I lost my son at 22 weeks, and I have since learned that more woman that I realize lose babies in the 2nd and 3rd trimester, which is much, much harder to recover from than a miscarriage. I wish it were talked about it more, and even mentioned. As I held my tiny son in my arms after 5 hours of labor, all I could think was – I thought this wasn’t supposed to happen? People need to know.

  • When I was at the ER having my miscarriage, my friend and co-worker texted to tell me she was pregnant, followed by her ultrasound picture (she didn’t know that I was pregnant as well, only that I wasn’t feeling well and wasn’t coming into work). I was so upset when I went unto the ultrasound room, I started to cry. The miscarriage hadn’t been confirmed, but I knew that it wasn’t going to turn out as I had hoped. The ultrasound tech said to me "You seem upset?! Is it just because you’re here?"… I didn’t even know what to say. Ummmm… yes- I’m upset because I’m having a miscarriage as we speak, not because I wish I had a cookie. All she needed to do was hand me some tissues… People are odd and those that are concerned with trying to say the right thing are those that seem to botch it the most.

  • We were told last week when we had an ultrasound that nothing could be seen and it wasn’t a viable pregnancy anymore. Now one of our friends just keeps reminding us that we DID get pregnant, so we know we can and we can do it again. Every time he says that, I just want to punch him. Yes, we did get pregnant. But I don’t want to try again, I wanted THIS baby to hold in my arms. He doesn’t say it to be hurtful, he genuinely cares and thinks he’s helping. But he’s really not.

  • My daughter just lost her 5th pregnancy at 8mos. It has to have been the worst thing in the world for her to deal with and I know it will take a very long time to heal. The things that were said to her in front of me were appaling I could imagine what was said when I wasn’t there. I know when I had a miscarriage all of the same things were said to me. And that was 20 yrs ago!

  • Thank you for this post. Another one that infuriates me is people who ask if it was a girl or boy. It doesn’t matter and your curiosity in the baby’s sex is frankly morbid!

    I lost my baby at 21 weeks and am still grappling with this fact. I think Stephen Colbert was recently quoted on the issue of grief because he lost his father and brother when he was young. He characterized grief as something that chooses when it wants to visit you. You feel great one day or one week but at some point, that grief is going to visit you and you’ll have to spend some time with it. I think this characterization is perfect and you need to develop a healthy relationship with grief in order to move forward (not ‘move on’ but move forward).

  • Thank you for this post. I very recently experienced my first miscarriage at 9 wks, although the baby was at 7 wks. It was a very gross, tiring, and emotionally wrenching time. I'm still going through the process 8 weeks later…supposedly everything is fine…but I'm just wishing it all to END.

    At first, I was upset but I wasn't devastated. I was actually alright with the "nature taking its course" argument. But, lately I've been feeling sad and nervous about trying again. I know that my (hopefully) next pregnancy will make me nervous instead of joyful and I think that stinks. But, how can one NOT worry after experiencing a miscarriage? And yes, husbands do seem to take things differently. I know that he was pretty distraught at first, he fell apart while telling his co-workers (because, in the excitement of things we ended up telling many people – NOT doing that again!!). But, now he's moved on while I wrestle with the emotional stuff. And it doesn't help that 7 (yes, SEVEN) other friends are pregnant right now. I went to my 1st trimester class with one, so I find myself looking at her belly trying not to think, "That is what I should look like right now."

    BUT. Beyond our current "sadness", we are wanting to try again, and try again we will when the time is right. Crossing my fingers that the next pregnancy will bring us a baby however loud and poopy he/she is!

  • Grieving an unborn baby is extremely difficult as the loss is associated to our body, and also there is often lack of closure. Because there is such little support and understanding (unless sharing the same experience), grieving women may develop deep emotional scars and often have difficulties conceiving again due to unresolved grief. Since this issue is especially dear to my heart, I dedicated part of my healing practice specifically to healing after miscarriage. The method is extremely effective and often requires one session only. Please, visit http://www.healinghypnosispalmharbor.com for more information, or call 727-804-0483. Sessions are also available via phone. I am here to help. Sincerely, Sabina D.

  • Thank you so much for posting this. I just had a loss at 12 weeks (after we had told everyone the news) and the comments people have made have been just astounding…

  • Thank you for your post. I still feel a deep sense of loss after having a miscarriage at 7 weeks between my daughter and son. I heard many times it was not meant to be but it did not make my pain for my loss go away. The cards I did receive from a few friends saying they were there if I needed to talk meant the most to me.

  • Great post. Well said. I am still in the depths of grief over my most recent miscarriage — I had a d/c on Tuesday, having lost our baby at nearly 11 weeks. I am 39 years old and we tried for three years to have this child — after taking a break of a year from trying after a previous miscarriage. And in the past week, I've heard everyone single one of the things that people shouldn't say.

    It's amazing how powerful and helpful the words, "I'm sorry for your loss" — nothing more, nothing less, can be. Right now, I don't need to hear anything else.

  • Such a great post! I would LOVE for you to write one for those trying to get pregnant and are struggling with infertility…and the dumb ass comments and unsolicited advice that are given from people who havent ever tried to get pregn…."You know the stress of thinking about getting preg could be the cause of that, RIGHT?!" or "Just dont think about it!" or "It will happen when its meant to be!" or "Are you having sex enough?". I dont give out advice to people who are whining about why they arent married yet and say "Dont stress about the fact that you have lived with him for 4 years and he doesnt want to marry you yet, hang in there!" or "Maybe you should try giving him a bj once in a while?" UGH!

  • Perfect list!

    I have one more to add though. When I had my miscarriage this past time, my aunt said "at least you know you can get pregnant/have a baby". I felt like saying that getting pregnant means very little if you can't stay pregnant.

    Of the few people we told about being pregnant (and then losing it), most won't even talk about it. If pregnancy or babies or miscarriages are mentioned, they get awkward and don't say anything. I know they probably don't know what to say, but it still makes me feel badly about the entire thing.

  • When I miscarried, I really got so sick of the line "I'm sorry for your loss", especially in online threads. It felt so empty to me. Simply like they wanted to say *something* but didn't know what to say. I wish I had read more of "I don't know what to say, but I'm here." Coming from friends and family who knew me the sorry-for-your-loss comment wasn't all that bad.

    My mom really upset me, though, because after both of my miscarriages (within months of each other) she commented on how great my 2 yr old son is. He's the biggest joy in my life right beside my husband. She said "Would it really be such a bad thing if you could never have anymore children?" I mean, who the hell tells someone that while they're grieving the loss of something that important to them?

  • What a great post. I heard everyone of the "do not" comments you mention, plus some. The most hurtful was "Get over it, and move on." and "we all had one". I am sorry they experienced miscarriage as well and I would have been happy to help them through that difficult time had I known them but to bring it up during my own loss, not appropriate. Eventually that information becomes useful, when you are ready to talk, there is someone who has shared the same experience and hurt.

    I don't have children and I never got pregnant until I was 39 years old. I was so very excited. I have always wanted children, it had just never happened. I was 10 weeks before I found out it wasnt meant to be, the baby hadn't developed past 6 weeks. The miscarriage itself took approximately 5 weeks to complete itself (I couldnt get the doctors to do anything for me to speed up the process). I became pregnant again about 3 months later. I was at 12 weeks when I found out once again I was not going to have a child. This time the baby had developed to 9 1/2 weeks. When I went in for the checkup and they did the initial ultrasound, the doctor told me she saw movement. I didn't…. but I was just praying she was right. A few minutes later she sent me for a proper ultrasound and later that day I found out I was going to lose another child. I was once again devastated.

    It has been 2 years now, I have not gotten pregnant again. I have accepted the fact that it may never happen however I am not doing anything to prevent it from happening. I still pray that someday I will be a mother.

  • We lost our 4th pregnancy at 10 weeks (after 2 healthy boys and one "chemical pregnancy). A regular customer where I work responded by asking if I'd wanted it and then saying it was probably a girl, huh? I was really just shocked by that one… I went to a specialized counselor we were lucky enough to have in our area and just having a few hours of safe time and space to talk really helped me out. My husband designed a really cool tattoo to commemorate our Poppy and to my surprise got a matching one himself! Great blog, it is an important topic to bring to light!

  • So true. I actually had my SIL tell me "ummm you guys shouldn't have kids. Clearly your body is trying to tell you something."

    I wanted to respond, "Ummm you guys shouldn't have kids. Clearly we don't need anymore of your type in the human gene pool."

  • could you please post this to the world? i wish more people would read this and have a little more understanding.
    one of the best things one of my friends said after my miscarriage was when she offered her sympathy and i said, "it's okay." and she said, "NO IT'S NOT! you lost your baby and that's NOT okay." i took on that state of mind and it actually made me feel so much better! from then on, when someone would offer their condolences and say they were sorry i felt much better just agreeing with them.

  • I want to thank the author for this incredible post and also I want to thank the people that responded. Thank you for sharing your experiences and your feelings it shows me that I am not alone.

  • I fell pregnant straight off the back of a miscarriage. I am 15 and a half weeks along now but I cannot help but still be nervous for this pregnancy. I have found it hard to get excited and even tell anyone that I'm pregnant. I felt like I needed more time to grieve for our loss before trying again but also I am glad that we have been blessed with this surprise. It is amazing how many people go through this experience and you're right about others not knowing what to say, I came across it many times. Perhaps that's why we don't hear it talked about much because it sadly feels so awkward to some. I often found myself playing the role of comforter when people found out because I could see them struggling with what to say.
    Your guide is very helpful and reassuring, thanks for putting it out there.

  • Made me a little blurry eyed, I wont spill my life story–but the DO NOT list must not be known by many, I would appreciate a general mailer you can choose to send out to your nearest and dearest during/after a miscarriage…….. Maybe a 3 minute PSA made by those "School House Rock" kids….. perhaps……???

    Keep your peckers up!!

  • This blog is extremely appreciated, I am just experiencing my first miscarriage at 17 weeks after a healthy first pregnancy and child. Just went through labor and delivery of the little one earlier this week. I am still reeling from the entire situation and appreciate the comfort I have found in others words who have been there and understand the loss that is suffered. I was not prepared (and don't think you ever could be) for the emotions I have experienced this week. I am doing my best to accept the emotions I'm feeling and to give thanks daily for the thriving 20 month old boy my husband and I have at home. Time will heal, but he will never be forgotten.

  • Great post!!! I must admit I did chuckle and I don’t feel guilty at all. I’ve lost 4, have one with another on the way and what you’ve said is exactly true and right on the money! I’ve had friends suffer a loss and the best thing I’ve found is to bring over some homemade soup and offer an ear. Another suggestion is to wait for the first week to pass. After a few days everyone seems to think you should be over it. It takes a few days to sink in and by then you’re left alone and it’s assumed your fine by then.

    Love the honesty and humor of your blog. I get so excited every time I see a new post.

  • You didn't mention my personal favourite: "Have you considered there was probably something wrong with the baby?" So what was that person saying about me? That I couldn't handle or want a child with special needs? I could, I would, if that's what my situation was. It doesn't matter why I lost my baby, and worrying that any child I might conceive in the future could also have "something wrong" is not something a grieving mother needs to think about.

    Thanks for this article. I'll be passing this one around.

  • What a great post. I especially like the "You need to whittle wooden whistles" comment. Awesome! 🙂

    I am here because of the Creme de la Creme and found your site from someone else's site on IF. Thanks for writing.

  • I completely agree. I had all of those things said to me when I had an ectopic pregnancy last year. So true about the "at least it was early" and lottery analogy! You brought light to a tough subject.

  • I've never had a miscarriage, but I can't imagine how a women must feel when that happens to them. It's one of those situations ::I think:: where no matter how carefully you chose your words a hurting person will interrupt them however they need or want to.

  • Good topic. I had an early miscarriage years ago, followed by a healthy son. I think the best any of us can do is offer a suffering friend your ear and your time – let them know that you're there for them in whatever way they need you – to talk, cry, go out, hang out, have a cocktail, whatever. If you HAVE had a miscarriage, find a way to talk about it with the friends that are most receptive. Most of my girlfriends with children have had miscarriages, and just being able to talk openly about it made me feel like this can be a normal occurance in an otherwise healthy reproductive life. Best of health to all the preggos reading this – I'm 16 weeks and always full of worry, but doing everything to relax and enjoy it!

  • Thank you so much for this post. My husband and I suffered a miscarriage after trying for a baby for over a year. I was 8 weeks along. All of these things were said to us, and all of the people saying these things had never been through this. I honestly didn't want to hear all of the cliches that goes along with a loss. Say you're sorry, and that's it. That's all I needed. However, we did mourn our loss and we still miss that baby everyday. I am now 17 weeks pregnant. It took over a year to get pregnant after our miscarriage. I'm truly ecstatic to be this far along in my pregnancy, but that doesn't mean that I don't miss that child that we could have had.
    Again, thank you so very much. I enjoy reading your blog very very much!!

  • Just, thank you for this. I have a son who turns 8 next week and we are expecting our second child in February. Before my son I had two miscarriages, and I went on to have 4 more in the years after him that we were trying. Whenever the subject would come up people seemed more uncomfortable than anything. I don't think anyone said anything to me from the Do Not column, but I was often met with awkward silence, which honestly, isn't much better. The few people who responded sympathetically were those who I've come to realize are my true friends and people I can count on.

  • Thank you for this post. I miscarried during my first pregnancy at 8 weeks, and I heard everything under the "DO NOT" column. It was so frustrating, even my own mother said some/most of those of things… Since she had never had a miscarriage, she had no idea how to react. I was due September 13, 2010. I have since gotten pregnant, and am now 17 weeks along and everything seems perfect, but I'm still worried… While I wish I would have read this months ago, it was still helpful to read now. Thank you again.

  • Hi, I am so sorry for you loss. Thanks for educating those who don't know what to say. I too had three miscarriages, and each one is a loss, no matter what. I totally agree with you about how huge of a miracle it is to even have a baby. So many things have got to happen at the right time. Let me know if you want to talk and know that I will be thinking about you. Take care.

  • amen, sister. we had a 1 year old daughter (that took 13 months of trying, thankyouverymuch) when we had a miscarriage after trying for 8 months. …and now we have been trying for a total of 21 months for #2…and yet my mother-in-law will still say to me, 'it just wasn't meant to be, natalie' and 'you'll have another in god's time'.
    a miscarriage is so very painful–and so much more so when it's hard for the person to get pregnant to begin with.

  • Very nice post. I lost my first super early on. One of the people I had confided in went on to tell me to be grateful I wasn't stuck in that situation anymore.

    I didn't tell anyone but my husband and my Mom I was pregnant with this one until well into the second trimester.

    Sometimes I think people really just don't know what to say and a little sympathy goes a long way. I can excuse stupid comments from people who you know mean well, because they can be "taught" but some people can be just mean. Just because I was 21 doesn't mean my life would have been over for that child, nor does it mean I wasn't perfectly happy with dedicating my life to that child. Because now, even though I am a grumpy whale-like pregnant lady who complains all the time, I am so excited about this baby, and I'll love him like no ones business, but that doesn't mean that first one isn't always on my mind. I still find my self thinking of what my child would have been like at 1 or 2 or now 4. Its beyond me to comprehend how I could ever "just get over it".

    Thank you for bringing this painful topic to light. This is more then I've shared with anyone about my first pregnancy, so I hope it makes an inkling of sense. And my heart is with all the other ladies who share their grief.

  • Thanks for this. You totally hit the nail on the head. My husband and I lost 3 and I remember the ultrasound tech showing me on the screen the baby that I was losing and at the same time telling me "you can always have another one". I still to this day think about how many women that moron must say that to and it makes me want to smack him!

    Very well written.

  • I'm glad I saw that "it's god's will" or "god let it happen" was listed in do not say. Women can often think of it deeply as, "god doesn't want me to have children. He took it, it's okay."
    it isn't.
    it can also make women want to turn from religion which we don't want to do. Don't push religion on someone like that after a loss.

  • Great post, really great post. It's also terrible to say something about how the baby probably had some sort of biological defect and wouldn't have been able to survive anyway. Don't be sad that your Grandma died, it's not like someone can live with catastrophic heart damage from a heart attack. Also, you may not know if someone has experienced a loss, so just don't bring up kids. Nine days after my first pregnancy ended, someone who had no idea asked me if someone else's baby crying made me want to have kids.

  • A great blog, thank you! I agreed with every point.

    A couple of years ago, when I told the four friends in my close circle about my miscarriage, the general response was "I'm sorry, we know how much you wanted this baby, we're here for you if you need us". Except for one woman, whose response was "We've all had one" in an tone that suggested what she really meant to say was "Swallow some cement, harden the fuck up and move on". That was the beginning of the end of our friendship (for more reasons than just her attitude on this occasion).

  • Thank you so much for sharing this! My husband & I struggled with infertility and finally conceived our daughter thanks to IVF, sadly we lost her at 23wks into my pregnancy and we heard many of the you can try again type comments, which just compounded our loss because it was far from that simple for us. I'm so glad to have stumbled upon your blog and look forward to following you!

  • Perfect.

    One thing that I found is that our 2 miscarriages were as different from each other as any of our other children. Having a baby to bury was very different than not having one and the feelings and thoughts that surrounded that were diverse. The best thing was having people who were willing to listen as often as I needed to talk about it. We had a wise friend remind us also that husband and wife don't grieve in the same way. That was a very helpful reminder since my husband had very different feelings about the experience. Since he didn't have to actually deliver a dead baby, his connection to him is different.

  • Thank you so much for this. I've only had one very early chemical pregnancy but I'm infertile and have been trying for nearly two years; so any discussion you can start regarding pregnancy loss or those struggling with conceiving is very much appreciated. We represent the other, seedier side to having children and as you said, people don't like to talk about it, but it exists and affects more people than the average person might imagine. Thank you again.

  • Thank you for this post! I have never been pregnant, but have been struggling with infertility for the past 2 years. I've gone through numerous fertility treatments, including a failed IVF cycle last month, and much of what you wrote here resounded deeply with me. Sometimes the best thing a person can say is "I'm sorry". Offering to lend a listening ear is nice too, but only if you mean it and will be able to offer support and encouragement without offering suggestions of what the person could be doing differently. Nobody wants unsolicited advice when they're grieving! Thanks so much for writing this. 🙂

  • Thank you for this! I lost my first child January of 2010 at 7 weeks with no explanation. While I was coping with the loss I needed to know I had support because I felt so incredibly alone. I made myself not get upset with people that said "the wrong thing" because I knew they were trying to comfort me.
    Today I'm 22 weeks, but the fear is still very real. Especially with the anniversary of the loss of my first fast approaching.

  • Thank you for this thoughtful post. Most people are well-meaning, but often say the wrong things. I believe much of this can also be applied to couples who are infertile, which can be just as devastating as suffering a loss.

  • During the time that I was creating my family – I had four children and three miscarriages. Each loss was the most awkward time I have ever encountered. It is a deeply personal loss. I found it to be unlike losing a relative. I did not want to share most of my feelings with anyone – sometimes not even my husband. I also learned that everyone deals with it differently. I learned that hormones and emotion make it very muddy waters to tread in. I needed space.

    At someone's suggestion, I tried to attend a "miscarriage group" – but found it to be too difficult a place to heal. While the common denominator may be a "loss" the reasons behind them were all clearly different as were the final outcomes. Relationships built in that group, were built on a quicksand like surface. For some that had continued losses, watching others give birth was painful. I eventually left the group.

    My family did their best to understand, but I knew they never would. I kept things sealed up – in the vault- allowed time to work it's magic and prayed my way through many moments. I never faulted anyone for trying to help – but certainly wanted to sequester myself from the world many times. Even from my husband. And that is okay too.

    It has been nearly 18 years since my first miscarriage, 17 years since the 2nd and 12 years since the 3rd and I have been blessed with 4 children – but I've never forgotten how it felt each time. My second miscarriage has always presented a particular challenge in that I was carrying twins. I lost one – but gave birth to the other – who is my first born. I have often wondered about the twin as I have watched his brother grow. Yet I have NEVER spoken those words to another living soul.

    Offers to help with basic tasks – meals, cleaning, carpooling are always a safe offer. The words "I'm sorry" are more than sufficient. Prayer is golden. You don't need to tell anyone that you are praying for them – just do it. Anything more on the part of the consoler or the grieved should not be expected.

  • Having lost a child at 20 weeks, I approve whole heartedly. The best thing you can do is let that person deal with the loss for as long as they need to and however they need to. And though that mommy may not say it, it means a lot to have friends that stick by you through a loss and just let you know they are there.

  • This is very well written. My husband and I tried for awhile (we already have one child, our daughter), when we finally did we were over joyed. Right before my second trimester we found out things were not going well and sadly we lost the baby.

    I was due Jan 2011 (Not a day goes by I don't think about, and with the due date rapidly approaching I think about it more and more), and when I was going through the grieving process, I heard most of thing under the "Do Not say". It made me feel worse and I distanced myself from everyone.

    Thank you for this.

  • Thank you for this!
    It's always hard to find the words when someone loses a baby and sometimes, "I'm sorry" really is enough.
    And you're right, it doesn't go away in a few days.

    As insightful as always.

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