The grief is intangible

I used to wake up in the morning and for a split second everything was ‘normal’, then it hit me like a tonne of bricks. The grief of losing your baby during pregnancy is intangible, and no matter how hard you try you just can’t imagine what it feels like to be ‘normal’ again.

Losing a baby is intimate to you as a woman, it’s an intense experience and one that you no doubt suffer in silence. For the rest of the world, they haven’t a notion of what you’re feeling and going through, and why would they – they’re not you. Therefore, people can come across as flippant about your loss.

Baby Loss Awareness Week

As we enter the last quarter of the year, we’re reminded that Baby Loss Awareness Week (9-15th October) approaches. It’s at this time that I ask you to be mindful of your friend or family members who’ve lost a baby. 95% of women I surveyed said they received no support or counselling after the loss of their baby during pregnancy. However, the biggest issue they faced was that their friends and family members weren’t there for them in the way they needed them to be, or their partners didn’t know what to say or do.

Friends and family

I’ve put together a list of things to say and not say to someone who has lost a baby during pregnancy. If you’ve experienced a loss, I’d love for you to share this with your friends and family as it might just help them help you.

Avoid saying:

  • “At least you know you can get pregnant”
  • “You can try again”
  • “It wasn’t meant to be”
  • “Better luck next time”.

However, the worst thing you can say is nothing at all or pretending it didn’t happen.

Supportive things to say:

  • “I’m sorry for your loss”
  • “I’m here for you… Please tell me how you are”

If you can’t visit because you’re sick or you’re finding it difficult as you’re pregnant or have recently had a baby, send her some chocolates, flowers or a meal – something to show that you’re thinking of her. What’s important is to simply do what she needs – it could be a girly night out, staying in to watch a film, simply your company or she may want to be alone to grieve in her own way.

In my experience women who have lost babies need to talk about it, to be heard and have their loss acknowledged. Encourage them to talk to you and be aware of anniversaries of the time it happened and her due date because she won’t ever forget. She will never forget you being there for her. Equally, she’ll never forget if you weren’t there for her. Remember it’s the small things that count.

It will get better

Healing from this is a long process and eventually you’ll be ready to ‘try again’. Having lost two pregnancies, I know how difficult it is to heal, which is why I now mentor hundreds of clients through their pregnancy loss.

Many women soldier on after their miscarriage, burying their feelings. I offer a variety of services because however you feel right now, with the right help life after miscarriage can be good – even great.

For more information please look at the ‘How I Can Help You’ section of my website

“Start by doing what’s necessary; then do what’s impossible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible”

Francis of Assisi