Parenting

Parenting: How to deal with a miscarriage

Thursday, January 26, 2012

For the last few weeks, Blue Ivy Carter, the newborn daughter of celebrities Jay-Z and Beyonce, was a constant headline.

Only after the successful birth, in a song dedicated to his new daughter, did Jay-Z let slip a big piece of news: The couple was pregnant before but suffered a miscarriage. "Last time the miscarriage was so tragic//We was afraid you'd disappear but nah, baby, you magic," he raps in one section.

That admission reflected on a phenomenon marked for being both prevalent and silent: miscarriage.

In scanning the web, many women blogged about their story, noting that only after sharing the experience did other friends, colleagues and family members whisper, "It happened to me too."

Journalist Lisa Ling, after a lifetime of hard charging success, was shocked to go through it. She was even more shocked by how many people told her their stories after her loss.

She wondered why more people weren't talking about it. She was also so intrigued that she started Secret Society of Women, a website for women to come and share their stories and not feel alone.

Most sites tell the stories of women who go through miscarriage before having a first successful pregnancy. However there are a second set of bewildered women, who've had a healthy pregnancy, only to have trouble adding to their brood.

Janet, of the British website Care for the Family, writes about dealing with her four year old and being angry as she gives away her baby things to other needy friends. "What are you doing with my baby's stroller," her son yells at her.

She also writes about people meaning well but not realizing how unhelpful their comments were: "If you hadn't gotten up so early," theorized one friend. "You were working too much," said another.

A scan of the information out there suggests that most women that have gone through a miscarriage should keep plenty of hope they will be mothers.

According to the website Baby Center, three out of four women who have had recurrent miscarriages go on to have successful pregnancies, without needing special treatment.

So what to do in the meantime? About.com recommends that couples honor their lost baby, memorializing the child in some meaningful way.

Talking out your feelings, whether it's through a journal, a support group or a therapist also helps.

Lastly they recommend taking a break. Consider picking up a new hobby or pastime.

When you do get pregnant again, don't be surprised if it's nine months of mixed emotions, including anxiety and fear. That's normal.

If someone in your life is going through this, all the best advice leans toward just being a good listener. Don't look to give them a reason like "You were probably too stressed" or comfort them by saying "The baby was probably going to be really sick."

For anyone dealing with a miscarriage, I wish you all the best. I hope in due time, just like Jay-Z and Beyonce, you have cause to sing "Glory!"

Read more Parenting Perspective blogs by visiting the Parenting Channel on 6abc.com.

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