For those that it affects, a miscarriage is as sad as any death. It is also one of the most difficult situations in which to grieve as there is no body to bury nor a personality to mourn, just the considerations of the person that may have been.
How can I support someone who has had a miscarriage?
While you can’t take away the pain, there are things you can do to help your loved one through this awful time.
Don’t be afraid to acknowledge what has happened
Tell them you are sorry about their miscarriage. Don’t be afraid to acknowledge what has happened. Cards are generally appreciated and are a more thoughtful way of expressing your support than a text or email.
Allow them to grieve
Don’t try and cheer them up or ignore what has happened. Allow them to cry, be sad, and be angry for however long it takes. These emotions are normal following the loss of a pregnancy.
Ask them how they are feeling and don’t be afraid to discuss their grief with them. Of course, if their behavior gives you cause for concern, you should consider the benefits of them seeing a health professional.
Care for them
Think about small acts of care you can carry out that may help them through. Perhaps offer them a home cooked meal, a plate of home-made cookies, or flowers to brighten their home.
Reassure them that the miscarriage was not their fault
It may sound obvious to us. In many cases, however, people can’t help but blame themselves for a miscarriage. They will spend hours over-analyzing their every movement, and the food and drink they consumed.
Reassure them by telling them outright that this is not their fault.
What not to say to someone who has had a miscarriage
There are a few common phrases that people tend to roll out when they know someone has had a miscarriage. In most cases, they say these things with the best of intentions.
You can expect to hear: “At least it happened now before they are born” or “You can get pregnant again and have another baby.”
Rest assured that this is in no way helpful to the person grieving. A better approach is to acknowledge their situation, tell them you are sorry and be there to listen to them.
If you know a couple dealing with the aftermath of a miscarriage, don’t be afraid to reach out to them. A few comforting words and a willingness to listen will go a long way.