Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Stigma:: Number 3 - Miscarriage

It's been a long time between stigmas, but today, I've decided to tackle another.


If you've ever had a miscarriage, I believe, it's a strange and sometimes lonely road to navigate.

No one knows what to say. No one really knows what to do. Everyone seems to keep their distance in some sort of limbo. It's awkward for everyone. Trust me. I know. Even my husband seemed to feel differently about it to me.

When I had a miscarriage a few years ago, it was a weird, strange, sad, disappointing period.

One of my friends stated confidently that it was probably a good thing so I could 'go back to work'.

A relative told me that I should consider myself lucky that I was fertile. That I could fall pregnant. And in my mind I thought, great, I'm fertile, but I just lost a baby.

I was nine weeks pregnant and had known pretty well from day dot that I was pregnant.

I was excited. I was dreaming. I was really happy.

I also had no morning sickness (from which I'd suffered a great deal of when I was pregnant with the Doctor).

I remember the Saturday morning I woke up with cramps and spotting. I called the midwife. She told me to wait a while and then if it continued to head to the ER.
The ER was fantastic, however, a little vague. But nothing was concrete, everything looked to be fine. I was asked to come back for an ultrasound the next day.

We did. The three of us, Matt, the Doctor and I bundled into the darkened room, I was filled with hope to see my wee babe's little heart bumpity-bumping. There was no flicker. And the sonographer turned sadly to us. She was sad. I had tears rolling down my cheeks, and I remember Matt held my hand tighter while the Doctor played on oblivious to what was happening.

My gyno and I agreed not to have a D&C, for which I was grateful to begin with. But after days and days of waiting, and the constant reminder that I had lost my baby, I wanted it to be over. I wanted to get on with the grieving.

I had a quiet moment in the bathroom and felt a whoosh. I held that wee babe, probably no bigger than a golf ball and about the same shape, in my very own hand.

I've written and re-written this post so many times, months ago, weeks ago.
Maybe you've had a miscarriage, or someone you know. Everyone deals with it in their own quiet way and no one really wants to talk about it.
I wish the awkwardness was not there though, it would do away with some dark days.
My babe would have been born in September. But it was not to be. I still sometimes think of that baby. Boy or girl. And it always makes me think of blossoms. Spring blossoms. Spring blossoms and petals scattered on the breeze.
Have you ever had a miscarriage? Or do you know someone who has?
Read about other Stigmas here. There's another one I just can't find it.. Anyone remember what it was about?


Liesl said...

Me too. My baby was also due when the blossoms were blooming. Its still painful ... even with the passage of time and two really beautiful children. Perhaps its a bit harder to move on from something when its not readily discussed.

Thank you for being brave enough to write about your experience.

Liesl x

Christina Lowry said...

We lost the baby before Cohen. It was heartbreaking. We were so excited to find out I was pregnant after months of trying, ecstatic we had beat the odds we'd been given when I had one ovary removed, kept imagining what life with our little one would be like.

I had morning sickness and all the normal symptoms. I was sent for an early scan and we sat eagerly in the waiting room, blissfully unaware that in a few minutes time our hearts would be broken. There was no heart beat.

The sonographer told us it could just be too early, to go home and wait. Waiting and waiting, more tests, blood tests, more scans. Still no heart beat. A blighted ovum. I still felt pregnant. My body carried on doing everything that it should, not knowing the baby had stopped growing.

I opted for the D&C when everything was finally confirmed. I arrived at the hospital very early as instructed and sat there all day as they had lost my information.

That afternoon we saw a woman in charge of these things at the hospital who said our Dr hadn't proved it wasn't a viable pregnancy so they would have to redo all the tests. It might still be viable she told us. I just cried and cried. I had only just accepted that it wasn't.

Later that afternoon the tests came back and the D&C was booked for the next day. I remember waking up in hospital crying afterwards, like I had been crying in my sleep.

We too were told that it was for the best, something was wrong with the baby, we could try again, it wasn't a real baby. When all we really needed was a hug or simply I'm sorry to hear that.

It affected me for a really long time. Even pregnant with Cohen, I was afraid I would be walking out of the hospital empty handed again.

Afterwards I found out so many women I knew had suffered the same thing. I felt strength in knowing I wasn't alone, but sad that it's so common.

Thanks for having the strength to talk about this Lexi.

Shelley Trbuhovich said...

as a daughter of the mother of 10 and a father of 6 with 2 grandmothers who birthed into their 40's; my miscarriage at the ripe old age of 34 with my first child and subfertility issues thereafter was the most devastating thing that ever happened to me. i was 10 wks pregnant, our child was due june 25. i think of that little one every year....and of course, things have settled since i went on to have the petits. but i hold a place in my heart for every woman who has lost a child. i am never smug about childbearing and cannot stand anyone who is. i think women are resilient beings, which is the reason this isn't discussed more. the medical people are great at dealing with the physical stuff, but i found the emotional fallout both unexpected and powerful in its painfulness. to have to step over healthy, pregnant women at borders books to try and find a book on miscarriage in the 'pregnancy and child' section was hideous. will send you an email when i get a chance, as this is a topic that i have many opinions about!! one thing for sure, that pregnancy and loss changed me and the way i saw the world forever. x r.i.p baby jamilla, we love you.

Rachael @Mogantosh said...

Ah, Lexi, thanks for writing about another stigma.

I miscarried at ten weeks before I had Ivy. Like you, I had known for weeks by then, and had totally shifted my head-space to redefine myself as pregnant - ecstatically so.

When I miscarried I was absolutely floored with grief for a few days - like nothing I'd felt before. I felt so empty and raw. Luckily I was surrounded by women work colleagues and friends, who shared their stories and supported me.

I was stunned by how common a story it was, and the shared community really helped me.

But like you, some comments really hurt. The worst- and I got this a few times - was 'It's for the best.There was something really wrong with that baby.' 'Fuck you!' i wanted to shout. 'That's my CHILD you're talking about!

It saddens me that miscarriage is so silent a topic.

Thanks for sharing PMM. xx

genovetta said...

hey fellow mama. i had a miscarriage. all the things you wrote about a miscarriage were eerily similar to what my journal read about our miscarriage. i too suffered from horrible morning sickness all day for three months with our first daughter, and with this miscarried babe, nothing.
i saw tears from close friends that i had never see cry before. it was comforting and weird. i felt everyone take a step back from me. if they didnt, it sure felt like they did.
it happened just this past winter. our babe was to be born in sept too. i think often about how big i would be about now with the babe.
talking about it now is easier, and i think i know more women now that have miscarried, than who have not. strange.
thanks for sharing abou this stigma.

Unknown said...

A beautiful and heartfelt post. Miscarriage is horrible.

Anonymous said...

We tried for years to get pregnant and I can't imagine what it would be like to loose a baby. We came close a few times but we were lucky. Beautiful post xx

Bianca said...

I lost two sisters, late term (28 and 32 weeks) to miscarriage/still birth. I can't even begin to comprehend the strength my mother had to survive the experience with her heart intact -or the sheer terror she must have felt with each subsequent baby she carried. I think most people react strangely not out of apathy or callousness but because it is such a devastating thing - what DO you say? There are no words. How can you express a shared grief so deep?

My mother has always discussed it openly, I asked her once didn’t it hurt to talk about it, and her reply was that it would hurt more ever having to see my sister or myself go through the same situation in silence.

And yes, that acknowledgement hurts and brings up pain that would be more comfortable not talked about, but to pretend like it didn’t happen would be an insult to my sisters and to what my mother had to go through -30 years ago, when medically you were treated like you had failed. Your body had failed, you as a woman, entrusted by instinct and design to birth babies, had failed.

So my own way to honor my mum and my sisters is telling people when they ask that I have 5 siblings. Just two of them I never knew. Just the same as my grandma counts an extra two among her grandchildren, and of course, my mother has 6 children, not 4. It is something that is never questioned in my family, and will not be tolerated in silence amongst, me, my sister and sister in law’s, my daughters or granddaughters, -if nothing else, that is the legacy that my sisters have left.

Julia said...

Thank you for this post. I am lucky enough not to have had a miscarriage but people I love have. Your post gave me an insight into what it is like and how I could help.
After I had my first child I remember thinking of women who have miscarried and seeing them in a new light. Within the first days of finding out I was pregnant I new it's birthdate, star sign and had little hopes and dreams of what my life will be like. It is the same for any other pregnant woman. To lose a baby at 5, 8, 11, 20 weeks - it's all the same loss. The loss of that dream. That little person you had already envisaged and anticipated.
Thank you for speaking so openly about something so personal. x

Alexis said...

I had a miscarriage before my first child, and then another one between my second and third.

The first one was soul-crushing, especially because one of my friends was pregnant and kept sending me sonogram pictures of her healthy fetus. We went for our first appointment and there was no heartbeat. My heart drops even now when I think about it.

The second one was a bit of a relief honestly because my baby was only 10 months old then and I was deep into postpartum depression. I was fortunate enough to get pregnant a year later, at a much better time for me emotionally.

I'm so glad that you wrote about this.

Kate said...

We had a miscarriage between our second and third. It was to be a summer baby where my others were spring. One day I woke up and just knew something was wrong. I called Bren hysterically crying. He came home and we went to the doctor's. Noone understood or believed how it was that I just knew without any outside symptoms. But I did.
The next day we had a scan and it proved that I was right. I was 10 weeks pregnant but our baby had died somewhere around 6 weeks.
I had a d&c the next day as we were booked to go away one day later.
I remember lying in the dark in my bedroom that afternoon, listening to the chatter of my family in the other room and feeling awful but so incredibly safe and lucky.
The way I deal with things in my life is to get them out there and talk non stop about them. I told everyone. It helped. For me all those cliches made it easier. I was lucky that I fell pregnant so easily, I was lucky that that poor baby that wasn't meant to be had decided for me, I was lucky that I already had two gorgeous and perfect little girls etc etc.
It hurt like anything but we gave ourselves 6 months to grieve and process and decide and then we made Miss Pepper.
I hate that some women feel that there is a stigma involved in miscarriage. For me the more I learnt about it, discussed it and normalised it, the easier it was to make it part of my story and move forward.

Maggie May said...

I lost our baby last year at 13 weeks and it was absolutely horribly sad.
Thank God for my husband. I wrote quite a few posts about it at the tiem and that helped.

Jennie said...

I had been nannying twins when we fell pregnant with our own. We lost a twin in the first trimester. (after being told it would take 5-10 years to fall pregnant) The pregnancy carried on, with us very nervous. So the one survived and is now 9 years old. Because we still had a baby, people seemed to think that was okay. That would make everything alright.

What was really disconcerting was that when we moved back to NZ, my mother had forgotten that we had lost Eva's twin.

Thanks so much for this post, its a stigma that i still don't understand.x

Gina said...

Thanks so much for writing about this. I haven't had a miscarriage, but know many who have, and given the stats fully expect it could still be an experience on the cards for me. Thanks for writing this, offering insight into your personal world and the pain and devastation that miscarriage can bring.

sophie said...

No I haven't suffered a miscarriage but my best friend did about 7 years ago, she was 14 weeks along. It was so so hard to know what to do. I had lost my mum at this point and knew that there were times I just wanted someone to just be with me so I did that with her. She received many insensitive remarks even from her family - she felt like she wasn't meant to grieve. She still talks about it to this day. Thanks for bringing this up Lexi, I believe it is a really common occurrence but you never hear about it do you.

Cath @ chunkychooky said...

I said ti to mamamogantosh and I will say it to you too, thnakoyu so much for wirting about this, you are a strong woman and the way you wrote about your misscarriage was so eloquent.

I think sometimes it is hard for the blokes. I know Chef didn't really "get" that we were having a baby until he was holding her! ( then he bawled appropriatly) but prior to that I think the baby wasn't real to him in some way, whereas I was a mother the second I saw those two blue lines.
I think that is why it is different.
Thanks so much PMM, you are a star.

Marian Hazel said...

Thankyou for sharing what is a painful memory. It has to help others who are in the same situation, and hopefully let those that aren't or haven't yet know and undertand how hurtful some comments may be.

MooBear Designs said...

I followed Clutter punk here and am glad I did. It's nice to read something real and raw which someone has experienced. I have never miscarried and have taken my 3 children full term. I have friends who have had still births and miscarriages.

I am a question asker always have been. I don't seem to follow the rule of being silent witness which is what you are describing.

I have found asking to be both a relief for me and my friends who I still ask questions to. They have always thanked me for asking them and letting them talk about their experiences because I guess thats something I was able to do... listen.

Thank you for letting me listen to your story too...

xo Steph

Megan.K. said...

Oh Lexi. Beautiful lady.

I'm not ready yet to write at length about the effect my miscarriage had on me - not in one small comment box anyway - but when I do, you will be the one I think of for courage.


Melissa {Suger} said...

I literally had too much to say to fit into a comment box. I have never shared about my miscarriage on my blog, only ever referred to it in passing in the occasional TTC post.

Now it's out there for the world to see.

Bek said...

I'm so sorry to hear of your loss.

Thank you for sharing your experience- and to all the commenters here so willing to share theirs. I haven't gone through this myself, but have observed many of my friends suffering through the loss of miscarriage/s... and I hope I wasn't/am not, a "silent witness" or unhelpful.

I think it is good to openly talk about miscarriage for so many reasons. Thanks for bringing it up in such a compassionate way.

Kirsten said...

Great post PMM.

I had a miscarriage between my Lewis (3 years old) and Maggie (who is now 6 weeks).

I went in for my 12 week scan with my toddler expecting to see a little bean with a heartbeat and there was no sound. I was then sent for another scan to confirm and they projected the ultrasound on a huge plasma screen. To me, this was like a massive advertising hoarding saying "your baby is dead". That's how raw it all felt.

I took it really badly, my husband didn't seem to feel it in the same way I did. This resurfaced later and we had to have some marriage counselling.

A lot of friends were expecting around the same time as we were meant to be. In my mind I had to go through the pregnancy and get past the birth date before I could even consider another baby. Out of respect for the baby or something... Having said that, my first instinct was to try again straight away - either that or buy a puppy. Messed up yes, but I just needed to hold something small and cuddle it. If that makes ANY sense?

Totally agree that people do not know what to say. My MIL (who had had a miscarriage herself) said my D&C would 'clean out the cupboard'. WTF?

My dental hygienist admitted to having 5 miscarriages, my dentist said his wife had had one....

Miscarriage for me was punctuated with guilt - did I want this baby enough? Did I do something wrong? Was it the thrush treatment I used? Was it the beer I had before I knew I was pregnant?

But mainly it was a massive wake up call. I thought having my first baby made me grow up but I think the miscarriage took it to another level.

KerriAnn said...

So sorry to hear of your loss.

Loss of a child is a horrendous experience. I have a little munchkin of 2.5years old, but it was a long hard road. After a year of trying to conceive, we finally got pregnant and then at 17 weeks lost our first little girl. Then 6 months later, I was pregnant with my little munchkin, and at 13 weeks she was a threatened miscarriage. Since then I have had 2 more miscarriages, one at 7 weeks and one at nearly 20 weeks, with the last one being September last year. My heart breaks for the loss... and for those who have endured it.

Thank you for sharing your story.


Michele @ The Hills are Alive said...

As many commenters have already said - thanks for your courage and willingness to talk about miscarriage so openly and honestly. My little sister lost 2 babies as well as have other friends who have had miscarriages, terminations because of severe complications where bay "not viable" and mother also at risk of hemorrhage/ death and opted to terminate (at 19/20 weeks) so could survive for her 3 living children (what a choice!) and still births too. I had abnormal scans with number 2 (cysts on the brain and advised to terminate but chose to ignore this medical advice and have a PERFECTLY healthy 3 yo now imagine how many swayed by the "experts" to terminate) and that was challenging enough to have a pregnancy threatened so I can barely imagine the heartache of losing a baby. My heart goes out to them and it is really hard to know what to say or do. Always found just being there, ready to listen and practical help like meals, looking after other children, cleaning house etc but still feel useless and always concerned will say the wrong thing. What would have helped PMM instead of all those cliches?
For me a baby was always a baby from moment knew pregnant and start the hopes and dreams and plans immediately so seems heartless for someone to say oh it wasnt a baby or any of those other minimising statements. I know with my sister - I lost two of my nieces/nephews, cousins of my children. Made miscarriage all the more real/painful/understandable and shed many tears with her (although the loss far more for her of course). Also made us deal with the issue of grief and loss and death with our 4/5 year old. Very hard! Even more difficult if own sibling I am sure (as in telling your children they are having a little brother/sister that then dies in utero). Not a topic/life situation we are given much practice on talking about, death in general not an easy topic.

Have you seen Losing Layla (is that what its called)? Beautful documentary and heaps of other books/resources on miscarriage that I cant think of just know that may be of help to some readers. Will come back and post when I track them down

Thanks PMM for this post and so sorry you had to go through such sadness and pain but love you for sharing it to minimise potential stigma for others

Anna Bartlett said...

Fantastic post. Thank you for your honesty.
I have not miscarried, but my sister has, and I have had a stillborn baby.
I reached out to a support group (SANDS Queensland) for the first time in my life and i'm so glad I did.
If it helps anyone, SANDS supports families through the miscarriage, stillbirth and neonatal death of their babies and their site is
Thanks again. The more sharing the better.

Anonymous said...

This is a great post! I had a miscarriage a month and a half ago. It hurt to the very bottom of my soul. More than the physical pain of it. I was roughly 8 weeks through, though not confirmed by ultrasounds or the such. I just knew I was pregnant (Ive got 2 boys). I missed a period, and pretty much bang on when the second one was due, I began spotting. 2 days later I lost the baby. I held the baby. "she" would have been born in January. I bought a necklace with a garnett in it to symbolize "her". I wear it all the time. I grieve still, silently, because I have no-one to share it with that understands. My husband hugged and soothed, but couldnt understand and I dont think he greived. Not openly anyway

BuBbles said...

Thank you so much for sharing your story PMM.

I really wish the walls could be brought down and we could talk about miscarriage a lot more freely, especially as it is so sadly common.

We need support from friends and family during and after such a painful event and being able to talk about our experiences more openly will allow that to happen more easily.


mama bear said...

I am always so shocked at how often this happens, more than I thought.

I've got tears streaming from reading this post. I'm sorry you had this experience. Thank you for writing it. Thank you for sharing it. xx

Tam - UniqueBoutique said...

I have just miscarraged my second baby - after an awful couple of weeks of toing and froing from scans eventually my baby died. I hate all the comments that well meaning people say. I did actually go and buy a puppy, such sad times, am very lucky to have 3 children but i miss my special babies x sorry doesn't make sense too emotional - thank you x

Bec said...

my heartbreaks to hear of each loss - to everyone who has lost a baby, your baby was precious and unique and will always be loved.

I told very few people when I miscarried a few months ago. We hadn't told anyone that we were expecting and I wasn't very far along, I didn't want anyone to feel they needed to say or do anything and I think I feared what people might say in the attempt to be helpful. I fell pregnant again straight away (unexpectedly) and I feel so much more tentative/fearful this time, in some ways I wish I had more time to grieve over my lost baby, but I also feel so blessed. I will always love and remember the little one I never got the chance to meet.

Leonie Guld said...

Yep..right with ya sister. I like to think that I gave birth to an angel and its sits on my shoulder. How else could a angel be born? xx

shelia said...

I had two babies die mid-term before my last child. Pregnant over a year with no baby. It's been over 19 years and my heart just breaks for other moms when i hear it.

My 27 year old daughter just had someone at her work loose at baby at 7 months...and my biggest piece of advice to her. When it happen to me people avoided the subject at all costs. I'm not sure if they were afraid i'd fall apart or were just uncomfortable themselves...either way it made for a lonely time.

I'm feel blessed that you were able to share your experience with us.


Cat said...

You are too awesome. I am incredibly sorry that this happened to you and to countless others still. I think it shocking that this is still a stigma. People just don't know how to cope with it and say the dumbest things. xoxo

suzy said...

Oh Lexi. I'm sorry.
I don't know why people stumble around trying to find words, half the time making it so much worse. I'm sorry. With a hand hold or a great hug. That's all you need to hear.
It's not as if I shout it from the rooftops but the awkwardness and general hurry up and get this conversation over with vibe is baffling to me. I put it down to just a general lack of understanding or empathy. I used to think it was about miscarriage but now having a little boy who is autistic, I get the same vibe when out and about in public. To actually say the words "I had a miscarriage" or "my son has a disability" is incredibly hard to spit out. I see the look of " good grief what the heck will I say about this" cross over a face and then I am the one who feels bad for even mentioning it.
I had several miscarriages before, in the middle and after my two children. The first loss hurt. The last one hurt. The middle ones hurt. I've lost at home. I've also had D&C's.
I can say this losing makes your own empathy increase ten fold.
I also know that my tears are always just under the surface when in the past I had to dig deeper to find them.

CATE said...

Have just come here from melissa @ Suger Coat It's blog.
It's 20 years ago today that I had my miscarriage. First pregnancy after almost 18 months of trying, taken away at 12 weeks.
Have never written about it, maybe I should, one day. Still brings tears.

Laura Jane said...

Oh, Lexi, such a brave and lovely post. Miscarriage is such a sad reality for so many women.

I don't think I've ever had a mc but I may have. When our kids were 5 & 2 there was a weird thing that happened where my period came early and really bright and heavy. I hadn't missed a period or anything but who knows...

My best friend has had 5 miscarriages and an ectopic and she suffered dreadfully with it. She ended up with 5 children from 11 starts, and we help carry the pain by acknowledging her loss.

My mother had 3 miscarriages, and 4 daughters born. She and Dad always said they wanted 4 girls, and Mum still dreams sometimes of 3 little boys keeping her company, and feels they are the lost ones.


Laura Jane said...

PS Of course as a midwife I frequently work with women experiencing pregnancy loss. It is important to make acknowledgment of the reality of the lost baby, and I always ask if they have copies of ultrasound pics etc, and make a pack of mementoes of this very real event in their reproductive life. We include small fabric hearts, or a suncatcher charm in memory of their baby.

The fathers are also distraught at their child-loss, but also in seeing their partner suffering such sorrow along with the physical aspects. We make sure they are included in our care, along with siblings and grandparents if present.

~stinkb0mb~ said...

I'm here via Suger Coat It.

As I said to her, I'm so sorry for your loss.

Miscarriage is still a subject that few are willing to either acknowledge or talk about, it's easier to just sweep it under the carpet and not be faced with discussing the loss of a baby, the loss of dreams, of life, of what could have been.

I've had 8 miscarriages, each one hurting more than the last. We've been trying to get knocked up and stay knocked up for 11 years now and if I'm honest I'm not sure we'll ever hold a live Bubba in our arms.


Jodi said...

oh lexi. i'm sorry.

i'm sorry also that miscarriage is a stigma.


jodesmac said...

Hi Lexi, When my eldest was 12 months old I lost a bubba at 16 weeks. Doc did tests and didn't know why. The 12 week scans were all perfect. We tried again and were lucky to fall again quickly. At my 20 week appt, instead of photos I was told again that there was no heartbeat. I could not believe it. I cried and cried and cried. It was a boy and I also held him in my hand. That week my closest friend invited me over for dinner to cheer me up. She served seafood and said
'lucky your not pregnant 'cause now you can eat it'.
I had nothing to say....
My next pregnancy I injected myself with blood thinners everyday and it worked but I was a complete mess. I suffered anxiety attacks and took myself to the doc every other week convinced it had happened again. At 25 weeks my father n law was killed in a terrible accident so the sadness just continued. My little girl was born and I felt relief that she was here and that I could take care of her, however....I find that I do still worry about her more than I should. Tomorrow she is going away with her granny for a night and as she said good night tonight I said a prayer in my head that she will come back to me safe and sound. .. Not even my husband knows that I do that.
Sorry if I have overshared but its true that there are not many opportunities to discuss it. People think you 'should be over it'

Debbs said...

I too thank you for writing this. A friend showed me this post. The heartache is still strong for me I had 2 miscarriages last year within 6 months of each other. We have a lovely son already and I think I kept justifying to myself that I should be happy with that and move on. Much grief stayed with me until recently when I sought therapy.

I hate the comments too, like the "Its probably for the best. Maybe there was something wrong with it." I even had one person trying to be helpful who said, knowing that I would love a daughter, "Maybe it was a boy so God took it." Duh! I would have loved it the same.

The other awful thing that has been said to me many times, "It's so common." Whilst I definately know this is true, it doesn't help to hear it.

Thanks again for this stigma!

Leonie said...

What a heart wrenching post. My biggest fear while pregnant with each of my boys was that I would lose them. I was lucky, but my older sister and several friends have had miscarriages. It is such a sad time especially for the mother as we have such a strong bond with that little person inside of us from the moment we know they exist inside our bodies. The same bond that we have for existing relatives and friends. Perhaps thinking of it in this way may help others to support the Mum through her loss and grief. With statistics saying that at least 1 in 4 pregnancies end in miscarriage, if not 1 in 3, it is often not until someone else has a miscarriage that other people feel safe to admit that they too have had one.
Thank you for bringing this stigma out into the open.

Duyvken said...

Hi love,
great post!
I had 2 miscarriages in the past 12mths. The first was in Oct and would have been a May baby. It was an awful, awful experience and I was very upset for a couple of weeks and then mildly upset for even a little longer. Then I fell pregnant in Jan (a surprise) and was practically manic with worry,I lost that baby in Feb (would have been born in Oct). It's a tough road but baring your soul a little does open up a conversation with lots of other people who've had similar experiences.

Unknown said...

I'm in the early stages of our first IVF cycle and I'm paranoid about miscarriage.

I'm so scared that we'll make it through those first two weeks and then for some reason we'll lose the baby.

It's been such a long road to this point that I'm just not sure I could handle it if that happened.

It's great to be able to read other people's experiences and to know that whatever happens you're never alone.

Thanks for posting!

Laura said...

Thanks for posting about this. Too often, it's not talked about, or not talked about openly, or worse, far too clinically. Also, thanks to everyone who shared their stories in the comments. I am so sorry you had to go through this.

I had a very early miscarriage last year. Honestly, I did not even know I was pregnant (yet). It was probably around 4-5 weeks. We had gone roller skating and I'd fallen on my front, hard, that evening I started bleeding. I assumed at first it was just my period, but quickly I realized that it was just wrong. Very wrong. Clumpy, too bloody.

Although we never had the excitement of pregnancy, I did run the range of emotions of miscarriage. I felt like a failure -as a woman, isn't this my solitary purpose on earth? To support life? It sounds dramatic now, but it is how I felt. I also worried (and sort of still do, that I may never be able to get pregnant again or carry a baby to term. Seeing as we weren't trying to have a child then, I don't know yet.

The few people I told gave me the usual bad assurances- 'At least you know you can get pregnant!' 'It wasn't meant to be', etc. Ugh.

My mother had endometriosis, as do I, and had several miscarriages before I was born, and one with twins after me. Hearing her talk about it, heartbreakingly, makes me even more afraid that is what is in store for me in the future. Honestly, all I have ever wanted was to have a family and I fear I won't be able to.

I've never written about it, even in my personal journal. I sort of felt like since I didn't yet know I was pregnant, it wasn't 'valid enough'. Ridiculous, I know.

Thanks for making a safe space.

Cindy said...

I have been meaning to come back here once I found the words. I still don't think I have them. When Glen and I just got together I discovered I was pregnant and there was a moment of should I keep it as I may be a young single mum - it didn't last long before I realised that wasn't an option for me. At 9 weeks, I started bleeding and went to the doctor in the morning and as it got worse the hopsital on my own. I can remember doing the ulta sound that they didn't want to do as they questioned whether it was worth it as I was on my own and young and did I really value it. I haven't thought about the exact moment forever. Hardly anyone knows, even my dad as I managed the stigma of not only miscarriage but also 'untimely pregnancy.'
I can remember being in tears for every period after at the memory and had spotting for both my pragnancies after and feeling panic.
Love you and your willingness to be you Lexi

Marian Hazel said...

I read this post 18 months ago and felt so sad for you Lexi, but I hadn't even tried to have a baby then. I even commented. Last Friday I went to my 1st antenatal appointment, and we found out our first baby was no longer alive. I had hoped that the fact my symptoms had disappeared over the previous week was normal. I opted to have a d&c the next day. We had kept the pregnancy very quiet for exactly this reason, we are muddling through together, and I did tell two friends and my sister. I remembered this post over the weekend and wanted to thank you. Various nurses and doctors have said many of these exact things, and yes some of it hurts, but in their own ways they're trying to help.
I told my husband the other day I'm scared, as this was my first pregnancy I just know that next time I will be so frightened that it will happen again. That I have no proof that I can carry a baby. I don't think I'll ever enjoy those scans.
Sorry I'm rambling now, thank you for writing this, there is comfort in knowing I am not alone in this grief.