Going through a miscarriage is a devastating experience for a couple. Some people feel immediate sadness and grief, while for others the emotional impact occurs weeks or even months later. Both partners can feel a sense of sorrow, loss, fear or loneliness, and it may take some time to come through this difficult period.
Miscarriage is thought to affect up to a quarter of all pregnancies. If you have been affected by miscarriage, there are some things that you may find helpful in the months afterwards.
Take Time to Reflect
With the initial diagnosis of a miscarriage, you may have needed to make difficult decisions about any medical or surgical treatment your doctor advised.
Once you have been discharged from your doctor’s care, many couples find it helpful to take time to reflect on and remember the pregnancy. Some men and women decide to journal their thoughts or make time for mindfulness practices that allow them to work through difficult thoughts and feelings. You could either do this together or separately.
Some couples also feel that a service is needed to remember their baby. You may like to do this privately, or you might prefer to hold a small gathering or ceremony for family and friends to attend, too.
Talk About Your Feelings
Sharing your feelings can be helpful for healing, and you may turn to friends or family for support. You might also be surprised to learn that other couples you know have previously experienced a miscarriage. Speaking to them about their experience may help you feel less alone.
If you would prefer to speak to someone in confidence, or want professional support, finding a therapist or counselor in your area will give you space to share your feelings privately. You may feel that it is too painful to discuss a miscarriage at first. If you change your mind months or even years later, it is perfectly healthy to seek help long after the loss occurred.
It is helpful to have support in place, but in the early days you may also value having time just you and your partner. Don’t be afraid to decline invitations if you don’t feel up to it, or request that certain topics are off-limits. Those around you will understand.
Be Kind to Yourself
The time after a miscarriage can feel very dark. Both you and your partner may therefore need to request some time off work.
Let yourself grieve and try not to worry about what you ‘should’ be doing. Some men and women find it helpful to read other people’s stories of miscarriage, as this may make you feel less alone or show you that there are many ways to grieve and start to heal.
If life feels empty, you may want to start a new hobby or simply start watching a new TV show to pass the time. Find something new that you and your partner can do together, such as walking in nature or going to the movies.
You may want a new focus at this time, and some men and women enter running races or fundraise in other ways for pregnancy loss charities.
Seek Medical Advice
Approach your doctor if you need medical advice. They are available for any queries or concerns you might have. This could involve queries about:
- What might have caused the miscarriage
- Symptoms you might experience after miscarriage
- When you can try to conceive again
- Medication or support to help you manage anxiety, low mood or depression.
Miscarriage is a devastating time for a couple. There is no right or wrong way to cope with loss, but the physical and emotional aftereffects are likely to feel more manageable if you can practice self-care, pay attention to how you are truly feeling, and seek medical or emotional support if needed.