As many of my readers know, we experienced a monumental loss on June 7th, 2019. You can read more about the story here. There’s a lot of things I’ve learned through our experience and I thought I’d share my top 5 with you; these are things I wish I knew right when it happened but also things I wish I knew so I could have better supported friends who had miscarriages. If you’ve ever experienced a miscarriage or are going through one now, I just want to say I’m so sorry and I hope this post helps you.
5 Things I've Learned From Having A Miscarriage
- The first thing I’ve learned is that you have to properly mourn the loss of your baby, despite gestational age. I’ve found that through my grief, so many have experienced losses but also, so many have downplayed the loss due to it being so early. A loss is a loss. You not only mourn the loss of your baby but you need to mourn the loss of what you thought life would look like with that baby. While you may try again and go on to have a successful pregnancy, don’t downplay your loss. Give your heart the time it needs to properly mourn the loss of your baby! It’s okay to feel it.
- It’s okay to talk about it, you are not alone… but it’s also okay to not talk about it and to lay in bed and cry all day. You have to do what feels best for you and each day will be different. There is no standard way to grieve.
- You may experience postpartum symptoms. If you’ve had a baby prior, you may recognize those symptoms… the hormone decrease brings on mood swings, hot flashes, hair loss, fatigue and sometimes skin trouble. Depending on how far along you are, you may even have breast soreness or experience milk coming in. In addition to those symptoms, watch out for postpartum blues.
- I hate the saying “you find out who your real friends are” and I don’t want to use that but in this case, you do “find out which friends can stand by you in the hard stuff”. It’s simple… I don’t think your other friends aren’t your real friends, but some people can weather hard stuff better than others. I’ve seen a variety of different traits come out from all different people who I didn’t know could support me in those types of ways and in the same sense, I’ve seen friends/family who I thought would be better support systems, shy away from me.
- People will say the wrong thing and that’s okay. If a sentence starts with “at least…” or involves a saying about “plans” then I know what comes next and I have learned to just let it slide on by, smile and nod. They do have good intentions and are trying to comfort and I know that but never the less, it’s the wrong thing to say and it hurts. I try to let it roll off and not hold grudges or make rash decisions or comment back. Some things are better left unsaid. I’m working on a post about what you should say to someone who has experienced a miscarriage, or at least what I’ve found to be helpful rather than hurtful.
If you’re experiencing a miscarriage, or have, I’m so sorry. Look for resources and outlets to talk about it. Seek therapy or support groups. Talk to your spouse or significant other. Don’t bottle it up. It’s hard. You need space to grieve and you need to allow yourself that space. If you are reading this and have a friend or family member who has experienced a miscarriage, I hope this helps you to speak to them comfortably, knowing that there is no right thing to say, there is no right way to grieve, and there is no right way to approach this.
If I could say anything to those who have supported me through my loss, I’d say thank you and I’d tell them to keep asking if I’m okay. Some days are harder than others and when a friend, spouse or family member asks me if I’m okay, it gives me the space to mourn and speak about my grief which is really important.