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To tell or not to tell

(12 Posts)
BraveLilBear Mon 05-Nov-12 10:45:12

I lost my first ever pregnancy on Oct 15th at 5+2 weeks. A chemical pregnancy.

I never expected to feel the way I did. I was distraught. It hit me incredibly hard - all my rationalisation skills did nothing to make me feel better. Even now, I find myself getting upset on occasion.

My question is this. Who should you tell or not tell after a miscarriage? We hadn't told anyone about the pregnancy - we were waiting til I'd seen the doctor. But I found myself seeking out an old friend I'd not seen for ages - a couple of close work colleagues, and an old mate who I happened to see whilst I was losing the pregnancy. They all responded exactly as I hoped they would - said they were sorry, it's not my fault, fingers crossed for next time.

My mum came to visit me this weekend. She lives down south and hasn't been up for over a year. She pledged to come up following a misunderstanding when I'd told her we were TTC. I thought I would tell her about what happened.

But she never asked anything about me - she asked about me and my OH, but the opportunity never came up. She didn't mention TTC or babies, and mainly talked about herself or my sister or my dad (they're divorced). After she left, I felt bad that I hadn't told her, and sad that I hadn't had the chance to tell her.

What's worse is, if it ever comes out at a later date, she'll be upset that I didn't talk to her. But I didn't feel I could. I didn't want her to judge me or imply that it was somehow my fault - she is a former nurse and has a bad habit of labelling people ie 'he must be autistic, i'm sure she's an undiagnosed asthmatic'.

Has anyone else ever experienced this? Who did you tell/not tell? Did you get the support you needed or did you get unexpected comments?

I'm really confused, and now I feel guilty. I feel even guiltier thinking that I'd rather talk to my OH's stepmum...

Geekster Mon 05-Nov-12 11:03:36

I'm so sorry to hear you are going through this BravelilBear. It's hard for you at the moment. Sometimes it feels just after a miscarriage that you don't want to tell people because you then have to talk about it when it is so painful still. I did tell all my family and they were supportive. I think people can't really understand what it is like to have a miscarriage unless they have been through it. Some people can make crass comments but I found they didn't mean anything by it and just didn't know what to say.

If you feel happier talking to your oh stepmum do, maybe you should tell your Mum she can be there for you. If you can't face it now maybe a bit further down the line.

Don't be hard on yourself or feel guilty. Your emotions will be all over the place at the moment, you have suffered a bereavement and need time to grieve.

Things will feel better in time, it's not always this painful.

You will find a lot of support on these boards.

I'm sending you a big hug, take care xx

MrsJohnDeere Mon 05-Nov-12 11:04:24

I found it really helpful to tell people about my miscarriage, even though I'd only told 2 people about being pg (dh and one good friend who doesnt now any of my other friends). It made me wish I'd told more people that I was pgmin the first place tbh.

So far (was 2 weeks ago) I've told 3 other good friends, one of my SILs, and (didn't plan this one, but blurted it out when I burst into tears explaining why I couldn't go to parents' evening blush) the school secretary (who told other teachers and the Head). All of them have been so lovely and supportive and I was really glad I told them. Much easier to have people know why I was not myself and avoids the need to out on a fixed grin and 'everything is well' face, which is really exhausting.

I haven't told my family because I'm not close to them.

So sorry that you are going through this. I would tell our mum if you feel it would help, but not if it won't. There's no reason it would come out at a later date.

BraveLilBear Mon 05-Nov-12 12:25:20

Thanks for your replies Geekster and MrsJohnDeere - and so sorry you've also been through this.

I have also told way more people about losing the pregnancy then I did about having it. I guess because there's no way I can 'jinx' it now!

I just feel like 'what's the purpose of telling my mum and dad now?' I would tell them, I guess, to warn them about crazy angry spells or to get sympathy. I've not been angry towards my parents so they wouldn't know, and getting sympathy seems very me me me. I think there is also a latent fear that they disapprove of my relationship (we are not married, but have decided kids first because we're 32) - and therefore might be pleased that it went wrong.

I'm projecting, of course. But logic has done a runner the last few weeks.

The one positive thing that has come about though, is that I now know who I want in my support team, and now know who I'll tell in future pregnancies. I think I'm just coming to terms with the fact that they're not necessarily the people that 'society' would expect me to pick ie mum, sisters etc. Not that we're not close, just that it doesn't feel right.

Thank you again for your help. How are you doing?

Geekster Mon 05-Nov-12 13:09:08

Hi BraveLilBear you are brave like your name suggests. I think it's good to let people know like you say so they know why you are not yourself. Like you said you find out who your true friends are. You just tell and talk to whoever you feel comfortable with.

I'm fine thanks for asking. Been a brill year for us. After six miscarriages we had our beautiful daughter in March.

I wish you all the best for the future xx

BraveLilBear Mon 05-Nov-12 13:40:53

Wow Geekster - that is fantastic news, many many congratulations smile

Thanks for your support - and I wish you all the best for the future, too thanks x

MrsJohnDeere Mon 05-Nov-12 16:13:47

Geekster - what a lovely happy ending. Congratulations!

I'm broadly fine, thank you BraveLilBear. This is the end of the road for us. I have 2 mostly lovely dc, and have to accept that that is my lot in life. I can't go through it all again, and am too old and tired!

HoratiaWinwood Mon 05-Nov-12 16:29:23

I told nearly nobody at the time; after a few months I could tell nice people; after a year I could mention it to almost anyone. It is part of ny family story now IYSWIM so although it's a sad thing it isn't something I have to feel defensive or oversensitive about any more.

If at some point you feel able to say "you know, I mc in the autumn; it was very early on but I was very affected by it", particularly if DV you are speaking from a position of being pg again by then, you will not be keeping secrets or giving TMI.

Good luck - be kind to yourself. "It doesn't get better, but you get better at it."

BraveLilBear Mon 05-Nov-12 16:36:34

I'm sorry to hear you're calling it a day MrsJD. That must have been a very difficult decision. Good luck with the 2 probably always lovely DC.

Thank you Horatia for your wise perspective, and sorry that you one to offer. I totally understand what you mean about being part of the family story, and think that the reflective back story infill makes a lot of sense.

"It doesn't get better, but you get better at it."

I hope so. Thank you. I wish you all the very best for your future.

messtins Tue 06-Nov-12 13:53:44

I think it's very personal. First time I MC it was v dramatic, I ended up in hospital and the whole world ended up knowing about it. I had to cope with everyone pussyfooting around me and endless expressions of sympathy and it actually made it very hard. This time, I've told 2 close friends both of whom have had multiple MC and some people at church, and my mum. Sort of regret telling my mum because she doesn't really want to talk about it but keeps phoning up just to see how I am, and then I have to tell her I'm fine to reassure her. Only my manager knows at work and it's been much easier to carry on as usual. Tell people who will be there for you when you need to rant or cry!

BraveLilBear Tue 06-Nov-12 14:56:46

Good advice, messtins, thank you. I'm sorry for your losses. I think what has surprised me most is that I feel guilty for not telling my mum. But at the end of the day, she didn't ask how I was - not even generally! - so I figured rightly or wrongly that she didn't want to know.

So far, the people I've told have been very supportive. Think I will tell OH's stepmum - one, because she's down to earth and not judgy, two, because she's completely undramatic, three, because I realised that when it happened that I wanted her in my corner for next time. Don't get me wrong, we're not especially close, but I think she'd be the kind of person I need.

Very selfish, tbh. But it's funny the things you learn, isn't it?

HoratiaWinwood Tue 06-Nov-12 16:19:48

It doesn't mean you don't love/value your mother. It just means you don't think she is good at this part of your life. And nobody is good at everything.

My mother doesn't really understand depression - in her mind there's "a bit fed up" and "so depressed you can't function so are permanently unreliable" and nothing between those poles. So I haven't bothered mentioning my depression. Which is a shame because if she could understand that she would understand the Whole Me better than she currently does.

I think you are right to protect yourself as you see fit. You can always choose to tell her, but you won't be able to choose to un-tell her if she reacts unhelpfully.

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