The loss of a pregnancy is a difficult situation that many women and couples will experience and need to cope with. One moment you are filled with the happiness of an upcoming baby and the next moment you find yourself stranded and confused.
Often, the emotional impact of the loss takes longer to heal than the physical impact. It’s important to understand that you must allow yourself to grieve. This will help you accept what’s happened, enable healing to begin, and allow you to move forward.
Women frequently experience a roller coaster of emotions as the result of loss. Feelings can include numbness, disbelief, anger, guilt, sadness, depression, and difficulty concentrating.
Even if the pregnancy ended very early, the sense of bonding between a mother and her baby can be strong. Some women even experience physical symptoms from their emotional distress. These symptoms may include fatigue, difficulty sleeping, lack of concentration and loss of appetite. Hormonal changes that occur after a miscarriage can further intensify these symptoms.*
It’s important to recognize the stages of grief that accompany the loss of a pregnancy. They include:
1: Shock/Denial: Disbelief and numbness are often the first reactions to loss.
2: Anger/Guilt/Depression: Disappointment after high expectations of an upcoming birth can cause a great deal of hurt and anger. Guilt about losing the pregnancy can also accompany this stage with a feeling that something is “wrong with me.”
3: Acceptance: Coming to understand that you are not alone in this experience will be helpful. Many others have endured the loss of a pregnancy to find new strength and resolve. It’s also important to avoid triggers that can cause setbacks to your grief recovery. Examples of potential triggers include baby showers, birth experience stories, new babies, holidays, and family reunions.
As you work through this difficult time, reach out to those closest to you. Ask for understanding, comfort, and support. Seek counseling to help both yourself and your partner. You definitely don’t have to face this alone!
Margaret from Greensboro experienced a miscarriage after a round of IVF. During this very difficult time, she says relying on her network of support and creating a plan of action helped lessen the blow.
“I allowed my husband to take care of me and reached out to my friends and family,” says Margaret. “We also joined a fertility support group and went to weekly meetings. We quickly made a plan for our next try for a pregnancy and soon had success. We look back at the loss as part of our journey.”
There is no doubt that a pregnancy loss is a very personal experience. Each individual and couple should recognize their needs and limitations to help work through the grief process and begin to heal.
Carolinas Fertility Institute is a practice with offices Winston-Salem, Greensboro and Charlotte. The practice specializes in the evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment of infertility. CFI provides advanced reproductive technologies in a comforting, supportive environment to give patients the personal care they deserve.
CFI currently has among the highest IVF success rates in the nation due to a combination of professional talent and the latest technology. CFI has been delighting patients since their opening in March 2015, specializing in highly-personalized treatment and resulting in many first-cycle pregnancies.
The practice accepts most insurance plans and offers a range of options for self-pay patients, including IVF, Donor egg IVF and Fertility Preservation. Patients interested in obtaining additional information about Carolinas Fertility Institute and our services may call 336 448 9100 or visit us at www.CarolinasFertilityInstitute.com.
*Citation: American Pregnancy Association Website