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Coping After a Miscarriage or Stillbirth

 

The loss of a child is without a doubt one of the most awful events anyone could ever experience. The grief after such a loss can be overwhelming, and you and your partner could be feeling the aftereffects for quite a long time afterwards.

There's not really anything that can ease the unique pain that comes after a miscarriage or stillbirth, but if this should happen to you, please try to keep the following points in mind:

  • You can't quantify grief. It affects everyone differently, and your expression of it and your reaction to your experience may not be the same as anyone else's. And that's okay.

  • Grieving is not a linear process. You will have bad days and not-so-bad days. However, as time goes on, the bad days will be further and further apart as you heal.

  • You need to grieve at your own pace. There is no set date when you should be "over it." Take your time and process your emotions as you need to.

Late Miscarriage

Around two percent of pregnant women will experience a pregnancy loss between 14 and 24 weeks, which is known as a late miscarriage. This is a devastating experience, and your emotions could be all over the map, ranging from sadness to fury. You could feel depressed, guilty, or even angry with your body if you feel that it has failed. All of this is normal and will ease with time.

Can Anything Help?

Even though it's unspeakably difficult, try to accept your feelings, no matter what they are. Don't try to talk yourself out of your emotions or allow others to do so.

And even if your partner seems to be as solid as a rock, don't assume that he isn't feeling the same pain that you are. Everyone expresses it differently. Many men deal with grief by feeling like they need to be strong for their partners and not showing how sad they feel. It doesn't mean that they are unaffected by the miscarriage or stillbirth, and it doesn't mean that they don't need support.

If the two of you are too fragile to be able to lean on each other, an external support system is essential. You may find it helpful to seek out a local support group. Being able to share your experience with other people who have gone through the same thing could be of immense help to you.

It Will Get Better

It may not seem likely, but there really is a light at the end of the tunnel. Time will ease your grief and eventually it won't feel as bad as it does now. The first year after a miscarriage or stillbirth is generally the hardest, as you pass milestones such as the baby's due date or first birthday. Even your friends' pregnancies could cause additional pain in the early days.

However, while nothing could ever replace the child you lost, eventually you and your partner will be able to accept the loss and begin to move on.