A miscarriage is one of the most emotionally difficult experiences a couple can go through. Sadness, anger and guilt are all normal emotions in the wake of a miscarriage. As an OB/GYN, I’ve walked through this trying time with my patients, and the most important thing I want couples to know is that they are not alone. My hope is that by shedding light on the topic of miscarriage, we can create a more open and supportive community here in Kansas City.
A miscarriage is not your fault.
Guilt is a normal and common emotion among women who have experienced a miscarriage. I have listened to many women recount their behavior since their last menstrual period to try to find what they did to cause their miscarriage. I want to dispel this thinking for my patients and any woman who has experienced a miscarriage. In reality, most miscarriages are due to chromosomal abnormalities.
In fact, it is estimated that anywhere from 50 to 70 percent of all miscarriages are caused by genetic problems in the developing baby that are completely out of the mother’s control. Because these abnormalities are random, there is no reason to place blame on yourself or your partner.
Don’t give up hope.
A miscarriage can shake your faith in your body’s ability to grow a baby. But don’t lose hope. Miscarriage is usually a one-time occurrence—only about 1 percent of women will have repeated miscarriages. And even then, there is help to be found in medical support and lifestyle changes. Know that most women who have miscarried go on to have a successful pregnancy whether or not a cause was discovered.
You deserve support.
Support from friends, family and couples who have had similar experiences is important for navigating the grieving process after a miscarriage. However, it’s common to want to hide a miscarriage rather than discuss it openly. This makes the grieving period extremely isolating for both parents and adds extra stress to a traumatic event.
Couples who have experienced a miscarriage should know that they’re not alone and they deserve and need support. I strongly encourage my patients to seek grief counseling in the days and weeks following a miscarriage. Specifically, perinatal counseling provides support to women during pregnancy and after birth or miscarriage.
At AdventHealth, we care about you and your pregnancy loss. Our Perinatal Bereavement Group for families experiencing pregnancy and infant loss meets the first and third Thursday of every month from 7 to 8:30 p.m. in the Tapestry Room of the Breast Center at the AdventHealth Shawnee Mission Outpatient Entrance. For more information about individual counseling or the Perinatal Bereavement Group, call 913-632-4223.
Additionally, our Pregnancy After a Loss Support Group helps families work through the natural feelings of worry and fear that can accompany a new pregnancy after a miscarriage. This professionally led group is designed for individuals or couples who are trying to get pregnant or are already pregnant after experiencing a miscarriage, stillbirth or infant loss. This group meets in the same location mentioned above on the second and fourth Thursday of every month from 7 to 8:30 p.m. For more information, call 913-632-4223.