12 Things I Wish Someone Had Told Me About Miscarriage

I’ve had 5 consecutive miscarriages, and I have no living children yet. As less than 1% of couple will experience 3 or more consecutive miscarriage, I now fit nicely into a horrible category.

But, what this also means is that I have a very unique perspective on miscarriage. Each one of our losses has been unique, but each one has also taught me something new about the miscarriage process.

So, today, I want to share the 12 things I wish someone had told me when I was going through my very first miscarriage. The things that no doctor has told me and the things that I wish I had known.

  1. You will survive this. You will get through this. I won’t lie, physically the actual miscarriage is going to suck whether you choose to have surgery (D&C), take misoprostol/cytotec or wait for it to occur naturally. It may actually be the most painful physical experience of your life. But, you will survive the pain (get strong drugs, they do help).
  2. The emotional recovery is harder than the physical recovery. The emotional recovery will take time and will include good days and bad days. I have cried more in the last few years then I think I have in my entire life.
  3. In a matter of seconds your wish for a healthy pregnancy and all the hopes and dreams that go along with this, will turn into hoping that this will end quickly.  You will start hoping that your nightmare will end, and pray (even if you aren’t religious) for the experience to be over quickly and painlessly.  After 5 times, I can assure you that this “new” feeling of hope will feel unbelievably weird and I for one always feel guilty for it.  That said, I know I cannot change the situation, so there is no reason not to hope for the miscarriage to occur quickly.
  4. Miscarriages don’t necessarily happen quickly. You may find out that the baby has died through a natural miscarriage.  Or you may find out through a routine ultrasound and require medical intervention to remove the product of pregnancies (i.e. fetus). This can happen quickly, or may take time.  One of our miscarriages took a total of 29 days from the day we found out our baby had died.  (Should you want some suggestions on how to prepare your home and yourself for the actual miscarriage, you can check out one of my past post on how to have a misoprostol/cytotec induced miscarriage here).
  5. You may also find out that you are at high risk of losing the baby (likely through a low fetal heart rate via an ultrasound). In this situation, you may wait weeks for the baby to die and then to start the miscarriage process. For me, the absolute hardest part of a miscarriage is waiting for our baby to die – this has happened to us twice. (I don’t mean to be graphic, but it is what it is and I’m not about to sugar coat things).
  6. If you are waiting for your baby to die, if you develop complications you may be forced into the hardest decision of your life. Sometimes you need to take steps to save your own life, steps that you never thought you could do, but steps that are necessary all the same. (You can read about this here).
  7. You will be afraid when and if you choose to try again. Whether you have had 1 miscarriage or 5, I can promise you that you will be scared and maybe even petrified of losing another child. You will face a seemingly ending battle against fear – fear of losing another child; fear of the ultrasound machine; fear of being unable to protect your child; fear of the physical pain of miscarriage; fear of the emotional roller-coaster, etc. I don’t have a miracle cure for handling the fear and the worry, but I try to focus on hope. I find hope to be the most proactive approach because your past does not dictate your future.
  8. It is okay if you choose not to try again. It’s okay if you don’t want to be pregnant again. It is okay to stop. It is okay to reach your enough. I’m yet to hear any of these words from anyone, but at my very core I know it to be true. At some point, you may choose to adopt, or you may choose to live childfree. And these choices are okay and 100% acceptable.
  9. Some people choose to hold onto little mementos from each pregnancy – an ultrasound picture, or a first teddy bear. Some people choose to honour their lost baby with a special piece of jewelry, or a tattoo, or by planting a tree. It is okay to hold on to important keepsakes and create special memorials. Do whatever works for you and whatever feels right.
  10. Having a miscarriage will likely change your life in at least a few significant ways. Possibly by reminding you that life is sacred, or by making you a little more sensitive to other people’s problems. I believe that anyone who loses a child will carry around the scares from each miscarriage for the rest of their life. The pain will lesson with time, but you will not forget your lost child.
  11. Although our modern society doesn’t like to hear about miscarriages (no-one likes stories about dead babies), remember that you do not have to go through this alone. Don’t be afraid to seek out the advice of a counselor or cry on a good friend’s shoulder. Most people likely won’t know how to respond, but I’ve found it helps to tell people exactly what you need – maybe a home cooked meal; a few new movies to watch; or just a shoulder to cry on and a listening ear.  (You may want to share this list at the bottom of this post to help people know how to better support you).
  12. Remember that although you are going through the physical pain, your husband/partner is hurting as well. The doctors tend to focus on the women since she’s physically going through the miscarriage. But, remember although men often grieve in different ways than women, our men are also hurting. He too just lost his child – you are in this together.  Support each other the best you can. Cry in each others arms. Laugh at each others bad jokes. When you feel up to it, go out on a date together or plan a vacation to reconnect. Miscarriages are hard on couples, but if you turn to each other, I suspect you will be able to survive and thrive together.

If you took the time to read this, I suspect you are either going through a miscarriage or have gone through one in the past. First, I am so sad that you are facing this situation and wish you the absolute best getting through this incredibly challenging time. Remember you are not alone. And above all, remember you will survive this and sunshine will eventually return to your life.

Should you have questions or stories to share please feel free to leave a comment below or email me at myperfectbreakdown@gmail.com.

 If you like this post, please feel free to share it and please return to myperfectbreakdown.com to follow my journey.

54 Comments on “12 Things I Wish Someone Had Told Me About Miscarriage

  1. Thank you for writing this.. Everything you wrote is not only helpful but completely true in my experience as well. #5 is what broke me with pregnancy #3. We waited 3 weeks from our first US at 6 wks for our baby to die. It was one of the most excruciating times in my life. You’re right, you are forever changed with a loss of a child. Again, thank you for sharing this and all the struggles that go along with this post. Hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I have to agree – waiting for our babies to die has been one of the absolute hardest things we’ve faced. We did that with baby 2 and 3, and I will never forget trying to balance hope with complete despair.
      I am sorry you too have experienced this – sometimes life is just so unfair…

      Like

  2. This is such a wonderful post! Thank you for taking the time to write this out and share. I know it will help so many women who have been in our shoes! Sending you hugs sugars!! xo

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  3. This is a great post. I struggle with no.12. It has felt very much like my miscarriage rathrr than ours. Eg tomorrow I go to get the postmortem results alone. His work doesn’t allow flexibility but its hard not to feel very lonely. In some ways its good. His attitude pulls me from the darkness when it gets bad but sometimes I wish I could see more emotion. Does that make me a terrible person?

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    • Oh, I too totally struggle with this one – and if it makes you a horrible person for feeling the way you described, then I too am a horrible person.
      I tend to think the entire miscarriage is about me, and have to remind myself that although my husband isn’t going through the physical aspect of the miscarriage, he too is losing his baby and all the hopes and dreams that go along with the baby. I haven’t always been very sensitive to this, so I am making a point to better acknowledge his hurt.

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    • No, I struggle with feeling lonely as well as the lack of emotion from my spouse. I recognize he has had a loss, but I am the one that was hospitalized and on strict bed rest for 4 weeks trying to save the pregnancy, the one who developed pneumonia after the girls were born and the one who had to have the D&C 5 weeks post miscarriage. I am also the one who went thru 4 years of infertility treatment to get pregnant and the endless, not convenient appointments. I have resentment that I have got to figure out how to get past as I know its not fair to our marriage.

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      • Angela, I am so sorry that you feel lonely going through this. I think that in itself is another item for my list, because it is so true, miscarriages are lonely. Actually, I should say infertility as a whole is lonely, since no-one outside of the “club” really seems to understand what it really does to a person and couple.
        I know for me, I don’t harbour resentment towards my husband, I think we are in this together, as a team. But I do like to joke that I wouldn’t be in this situation without him, because it takes 2 to get pregnant. And, on a serious note, I know my husband has done everything humanely possible to be with me every step of our journey. It helps me to appreciate everything he does to support me through our journey and it also helps me to remember what the limitations of our differing biology are, and that we cannot change that. Anyways, I hope you are able to sort through your feelings of resentment and that you are able to get through this together.

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  4. Great post hon. Thank you for sharing this. Your point #5 was an especially hard one for me to learn and I wish I had known what to expect beforehand. With loss #3 I had slow rising betas, and slow growth on ultrasounds. We waited over a month before confirming it was a miscarriage. I didn’t want another D&C so decided to take the medication Misoprostol, but it didn’t work for me. I had to take a second dose and it only partially worked. I thought it would resolve itself naturally from that point since the medicationl had gotten things started, but it took forever. I bled on and off for months and months. It took 7 months total from that first BFP for my hormones to go down to 0 and finally get a period and yet it still wasn’t over. A saline ultrasound showed that I still had retained products of conception even after my beta went down to 0 (#13 to add to your list, doctors use horrible terms for miscarriage… missed abortion, retained products of conception, seriously who makes up these terms?). After all of that, and exactly 1 month before my due date, I ended up having to have surgery anyway. I had to have a hysteroscopy, to identify and remove the fetal tissues. So the lesson I learned was that at least for me, it’s better to have the D&C. I didn’t even hesitate with loss #4 and had the D&C right away. Anyway, thank you again for posting this and sharing your story hon. Hugs.

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    • I hate misoprostol – like more then any other drug I’ve ever heard of. It has never worked for me, even with our 4th miscarriage when they gave me double doses for 4 consecutive days (which is the maximum my clinic will do). And then, followed that up with weeks of multiple horrible in-office procedures to remove products of pregnancy since my body wouldn’t expel it. But, due to the risk of scarring they now wont let me have a D&C – I’ve had 2 and now I’m considered very high risk for complications. This is probably one of the hardest things for me as we try again – I don’t want to deal with misoprostol not working again.
      And you are right about adding number 13. The medical terms all sucks! Absolutely suck!

      Like

      • 😦 that’s brutal. Praying the next one sticks and you never have to take Misoprostol again! I am curious about why they think you’re at higher risk because of the two. I’ve had a c-section, 2 D&Cs and a hysteroscopy and my RE said my uterus was in really good shape.

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      • I guess the risks of Asherman’s syndrome sky rockets after 2 D&C’s due to the scrapping involved in the procedure. So, my clinic highly recommends avoiding a D&C if we don’t want to increase our risks of further complications due to scarring. If I demand one they will do it, but we’ve decided that we don’t need to add complications and risks to our already complicated situation and future pregnancies that will already be considered high risk.
        I am so sorry you have had to experience all of this! But, I am so incredibly happy you are doing so well with this pregnancy! 🙂

        Like

      • That’s really interesting! I hadn’t heard that! Really good to know! I go back to what I said and really hope you won’t ever need to worry about it ever again! Come on lucky #6!

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    • Oh, and I too am so sorry that you have had to experience this. The physical aspects of the loss are horrific, but the emotional side probably sucks even more.
      But, you are on the right path now and I figure everyday things keep going well for you and that little guy is a great day!

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  5. This is so great. I often think about how I am in that 1% as well. Why couldn’t I be in the 1% of wealth that everyone always talks about?? This 1% sucks but it helps so much to know some of others on the bus with me.

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  6. #3 resonated so much with me. I’m sorry you even have this knowledge because it means that you’ve endured heartbreak and loss that no one should have to endure. Thinking of you

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  7. Thank you for your post! Every word is so true and each loss leaves you feeling a little more broken each time. I really needed to hear #7 today…it’s so hard to have hope when you have lost so much but it’s really all you can do. Thanks for sharing! Sending good thoughts your way:)

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  8. Thanks for sharing this. Having gone through this 2x, I completely relate. Both of mine were ‘slow downhill’ ones…knowing things weren’t looking good and loss was inevitable. Awful – just like you said…waiting for your baby to die. Misoprostol is the worst. 1st time I miscarried naturally. 2nd time – misoprostal 2x and it still didn’t work although I bled profusely. One of the worst experiences of my life. Ended up having a D and C anyway. Ugh. I wrote a lot about my miscarriages for Fertility Authority, and concluded many of the same things you have. No one gives you a fact-sheet for this. Thanks for this important post, though I hate that we’ve needed this advice. My heart goes out to you for your losses. Hugs :{

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    • Thank you for sharing – it is amazing how so many of us have been through such agony with failed misoprostol miscarriages – you’d think they would come up with a better medical intervention!
      My heart goes out to you as well.

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  9. Every single part of this was true. So absolutely true. Everyone needs to hear this –

    You will survive this. You will get through this. I won’t lie, physically the actual miscarriage is going to suck whether you choose to have surgery (D&C), take misoprostol/cytotec or wait for it to occur naturally. It may actually be the most painful physical experience of your life. But, you will survive the pain (get strong drugs, they do help).

    You will survive all of this. That is so incredibly true. ❤

    Like

  10. Great list, thank you for sharing. This will help so many women. I think #8 is really an important one for women. I remember after each of my miscarriages, thinking I was done. And at least for several months I refused to try again. I pray it never gets to that point, but I know that there is really only so much I can suffer through before I finally give up. Great post, thank you again and I’m so sorry that you’ve also lost 5 children. If someone had told me 3 years ago that I would experience this 5 times, I wouldn’t believe that I would be able to survive it, but somehow, you do get through it. XOXO!

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    • You are so right – if someone told me 3 years ago that this would happen to us, I would never have believed them! Heck, I had no idea RPL was even a thing! And yet, here we are, determined to keep going, and determined to survive.

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  11. Thank you so much for this post. I’ve read it repeatedly with tears in my eyes. Tomorrow marks the one month anniversary of my first “there is no heartbeat” scan and the whole experience has been so painful and isolating. In the days between the scan and my D&C, I searched and searched for a blog or list like this one. It’s a wonderful post that makes all my feelings not seem so abnormal now.

    #12 has been such a struggle for me. My husband has a son from his first marriage and I find myself feeling like this is my pain and my disappointment. He’s been wonderful through it all, but he’s not the one crying on the bathroom floor or the one headed for more fertility meds/procedures. This was a great reminder that he’s not the enemy and that he needs healing and love as much as I do.

    I’m sorry you’ve had to go through the horror of losing your five babies. I will add you to my prayers and of course be following your blog to hopefully hear of a healthy baby in your future.

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    • First, thank you for your supportive and kind words. I am honoured.
      Second, I am so, so sorry about your loss. I found your blog the other day and have started following, I just have no idea how to comment on it yet since it’s not a wordpress blog. (I’ll figure it out soon, just haven’t had the time yet).
      Third, I understand the struggle with number 12. My husband has been with me at most appointments, but the fact is he can miss one when he needs to because his body is not physically required whereas mine is. I know he’s in this with me, I absolutely know it, but at the end of the day it is my body that is actually experiencing all of this – tests, medications, procedures, pregnancy and miscarriage. All that said, I’m willing to go do again, so long as he is at my side. I hope you and your husband work through this together and find ways to support each other.

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  12. I’m so very sorry you’ve had to go through this horrible experience 5 times. But I’m so grateful you’re sharing it here on your blog. It will undoubtedly help other women going through the same thing. xx

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  13. I’ve not had a miscarriage, since I’ve never been able to get pregnant. I’m so sorry that you’ve gone through this 5 times 😦 I appreciated reading this post, because I want to be sensitive to those who have gone through this. I’ve learnt a lot from your experience and from the points that you made. Thank you for sharing and being vulnerable. I know that being vulnerable through blogging can be hard, but when you have such valuable insights to share, it’s really worth it.

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    • Thanks for reading, and sharing your thoughts. I figure the only good that can come from my experience is to share it to help educate others.
      Also, as a bit of a side note, my theory on infertility is that I don’t think it matters if you are unable to get pregnant or only able to get pregnant to then miscarry – so many of the emotions are the same – disappointment, fear of an unplanned future, lost hopes and dreams. It is all so unfair and hard to accept. Thank you for sharing your story as well – I will definitely start following your blog too!

      Like

  14. Pingback: Miscarriage Options – Natural | My Perfect Breakdown

  15. Thanks for sharing your story. I’ve had two miscarriages and we’re pregnant again, but I’m not feeling very hopeful. I really like how you said that it’s ok to stop trying. I am tired of everyone always saying “your son needs a brother or sister!” (I’m lucky that I did have one live birth-he’s 6 now), but it’s obnoxious to hear it all the time, and my business as to why I don’t have another child. If this pregnancy does end in miscarriage, I think I”m done. It’s just too painful to have to go through it again. Good luck to you.

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    • Thank you for sharing. While I definitely understand not being hopeful, I do hope your current pregnancy works out! And, that no-matter what happens, I think it takes great courage to admit that you are done and continue on with life.
      And, I do also wish people would learn that there are things better left unsaid! It is so frustrating to constantly deal with these type of comments!

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  16. Pingback: Miscarriage Options – D&C | My Perfect Breakdown

  17. This is an important list. Fortunately (???) my body seems to just expel everything so we haven’t had to make a decision about how I would miscarry and it’s cut out a few of the steps. Still a very long grieving process, and I’m glad you mentioned the isolation- it’s something that strikes me with every single loss, and it’s why I’ve started a support group to try and connect with others in the “club.”

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    • I am so impressed that you are starting a support group – this will be so valuable to so many women! And, will really help reduce the isolation that so many women feel.
      It seems that every single miscarriage is so different, so thank you for sharing your experience.

      Like

    • I am so glad that this has been helpful to you. This is exactly why I’ve chosen to share my experiences – if nothing else comes of our journey, I will take comfort knowing that other people have learned and/or found comfort.
      I think of you often, and have so much hope for you and your husband.

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  18. Pingback: Miscarriage Options – Misoprostol/Cytotec | My Perfect Breakdown

  19. This is the worst 1% to be in! I’m thankful for others like you who are willing to share their stories. I think the support we get from each other keeps us going. And thank you for sharing this post. I can’t think of a single thing I would add to it- the list is perfect and honest. If it’s alright with you, I’d like to link to this post from my blog sometime soon.

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    • Thank you so much for sharing your story as well! I hate that you intimately know the heartache that I have experienced, but I am so thankful for that we can share in our experiences and support each other.
      Absolutely feel free to link to any of my posts – the more we can share and support each other, the better! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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  22. Thank you for your personal stories and advice. Being pregnant for the first time was scary and then last week I found out our 10 week fetus doesn’t have a heartbeat and is smaller than it should be. This new was had and it hit me a lot harder than I thought. My boyfriend and I were so excited the past few weeks and then my heart broke. I am waiting for a natural miscarriage. I am thankful for people like you to post these blogs for young mothers like me to feel like I’m not alone. Thank you. I pray you and your husband have a successful pregnancy ❤️

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    • I am so sorry that you are experiencing the loss of your little baby and all the accompanying hopes and dreams. I firmly believe there is no hurt and pain like the baby loss. Remember you are never alone, reach out to someone in real life or one of us in the blogging world if you ever need some support. Lots of love to you.

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  23. Pingback: The Fear Is Strong With This One | My Perfect Breakdown

  24. Thank you for your post. It can definitely be a very isolated feeling experience. We are currently going through our 3rd consecutive miscarriage this being our 2nd missed carriage and I’ve definitely been wondering and thinking about trying to just go through this one natural. My D&C 7 months ago was horrible.

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    • Casey, I am so sorry for your losses and your experiences. My heart always breaks when I hear of another person/couple enduring this devistating heartache. Sending my love and wishing you the best as you heal both phisically and mentally.

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