What to Say (and Do) When Someone You Know Experiences a Miscarriage

Sadness Flickr4778643914Over the years many of our patients have shared some very painful stories about the ignorant and hurtful things people say when they learn about a miscarriage the patient has had.

“It’s probably for the best.”

“Be thankful. This was nature’s way of telling you the baby would have been deformed.”

“You were probably too active.”

“It’s God’s will.”

“Oh, you can always try again.”

If a couple has ever heard these words after experiencing a miscarriage, they may have experienced even more pain and hurt. It’s not because people are mean (some are friends and family!). Most just don’t know what to say or do.

What is better is to simply say, “I’m so sorry. Is there anything I can do to help you?”

A miscarriage is a significant loss to couples trying to conceive and carry a baby to full term. Miscarriages are not talked about very often, because couples – and especially women – are reluctant to talk about them. Some of them think that they are to blame and don’t want to call attention to what they perceive as a personal shortcoming

Men are affected, too. While the woman is dealing with taking care of herself and undergoing procedures after a miscarriage, the father can struggle with depression and feelings of inadequacy – they may feel there is nothing they can do.

There are things you can offer to do. The couple will probably be in and out of hospitals and doctor appointments for a while. They may appreciate ready-to-eat meals, house cleaning, errands, or just your friendship and company.

Talk to your friends and ask them how you can help. They may want to talk about their experience. They also may not be able to talk about what happened right away, but they may appreciate your help and companionship.

For more information about how we help couples who have experienced miscarriage or about our reproductive immunology services, please call us at 1-805-578-7000 or contact us by email. Since 1990, we’ve helped many couples have the family they’ve always wanted.

Photo on Flickr by Lau Lau Chan. Some Rights Reserved.

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