Did you know one in four women will experience a miscarriage in their lifetime? Some will experience multiple miscarriages in their lifetime while trying to get pregnant. It’s hard to make sense of a scenario that should bring people utter joy, but could result in loss and devastation. If you know someone who has had a miscarriage or personally suffered one, you know all too well that it’s an obstacle that can be difficult to overcome. The truth is, it is a memory that won’t just fade away. When a woman is dealing with a miscarriage, she needs love, support and a few other things so we’ve tried to round up some ways you can help a friend or loved one get through this difficult time.
1. Turn helplessness into support.
After a woman has gone through a miscarriage, she might try to turn to family, friends and other loved ones for support. As her support system, it’s normal to feel a sense of urgency to find the perfect thing to say. Nonetheless, it’s about being there for her, not saying, doing or being perfect. Don’t cower away or worry about not having the perfect response. Turn that fear and doubt into unconditional support. The worst thing you can do is abandon her in her time of need.
One of the best ways to show you care and show your support is by being attentive and being an active listener. When a woman has suffered a miscarriage, she might want to share her story multiple times. She might talk about the pain she’s going through. She might want to talk about what her plans and hopes were for the child. Whatever she chooses to share, it’s important to let her know you are there to listen.
3. Let her grieve.
Everyone experiences grief in different ways. There are several stages of grief. Whatever process or approach your friend or loved one takes, it’s important to remind her it’s okay. Remind her that she’s entitled to grieve in any way that helps her. Grief can create physical and emotional reactions, and whatever way she might react she will want to know you are there for her. Emotional reactions could include panic attacks, nightmares, and nervousness. Some physical reactions could include loss of appetite and loss of sleep as well as restlessness. These will all take a toll on her mind, body and emotions so try to be as supportive and attentive, but respectful as well.
4. Make sure she knows her feelings are valid.
Like grief, we all express ourselves in different ways. You don’t have to let her know how she should or shouldn’t feel. Instead, let her know that whatever she is feeling is valid and acceptable. Let her know she doesn’t have to hide how she feels or keep anything bottled up. She is entitled to feel however she wants after going through something this difficult.
5. Provide her with encouragement.
Providing encouragement to keep going is one of the most invaluable things you can do to help a friend through the process of healing after a miscarriage. Encourage her to be expressive, to be vulnerable, to cry and to take care of herself above all. Encourage her to lean on her support system and to take all the time she needs to get through the hurt and pain she’s suffered. She’s feeling an incredible sense of loss, so feeling like she has the support from someone who cares about her