What do I say to my miscarrying friend?!(10 Posts)
A friend of mine recently found out that her baby has no heartbeat. She had an early scan due to one previous ectopic & one miscarriage & everything was fine but they couldn't find the heartbeat at the 12 week scan. I'm so devastated for them. We'd all figured that it was going to be ok this time because they'd found the heartbeat early on! I've never had to go through it myself so I've no idea what to say to her. I know there's nothing I can do/say to make it any better but I don't want to just act like nothing's happened!
It makes it harder that I'm 30 weeks pregnant. I just don't know what to do for the best. I feel like I shouldn't be around her because I don't want my pregnancy to upset her but I really don't want her to feel like I've abandoned her.
Someone tell me what to do?! I'm useless at all this sensitive stuff & pretty much always either do the wrong thing or over-think it to the point where I don't do anything & end up feeling like people think I just don't care!
I'd be forthright, tell her you want to help, but feel self conscious about being around her due to your own pregnancy, and you don't want to make her feel bad / worse. It's very likely that she won't know what to say to you either, as she won't want to worry you. I'm pg at the moment and a friend mentioned miscarriage, and then fell over herself apologising for having mentioned it.
You don't say if you know what course of action your friend has decided on - she may wait it out and let nature take it's course, or she might have medication to bring it on, or she may have it surgically removed, so there is a chance she'll have some hospital appointments coming up. I would just ask her if there is anything you can do such as shopping, walking the dog for her, etc, so that she can focus on herself just now.
By the way, you sound like a lovely, caring friend.
She apologised a lot when she found out that I was 10 weeks pg with DS1 when I looked after her eldest when she went to the hospital to have her last miscarriage medically managed. I didn't know what to say to her that time either. She didn't tell me the purpose of the appointment until she got back & I pretty much just told her it was a shame & left! Worst friend ever! I'd really like to handle it better this time though!
She said they're waiting to miscarry & hoping to avoid having to go to the hospital. I don't really know how these things work though. I have a tendency to pretend bad things don't happen until I actually have to deal with them! They've gone away to stay with family for a few days so I guess it's best if I just leave her alone for now & maybe see if she wants me to pop round for a cuppa when she gets back. I don't want her to feel like I'm either ignoring or pestering her!
Hi Jojo. I'm in the middle of a natural miscarriage myself and just wanted to say, I know everyone is different but, one of my friends is pregnant and several have new babies. I am no less comfortable around them at the moment than I am my other friends. All support and handholding is gratefully received and much needed. Just be honest with her about your fears of upsetting her and tell her you are there for her whenever she needs you. And check in with her every few days.
That's just my perspective.
Say that you're thinking of her and you're there for her if she needs a shoulder to cry on or any practical help but that you also understand if your pregnancy makes it hard for her to be around you at the moment.
She might find it too painful to see friends who are pregnant but not know how to say that to you for fear of offending you.
Also, try not to say anything that sounds like you're giving her advice on how to feel about her miscarriage. There's nothing in your OP that suggests you would btw, but I just thought I'd mention it as some people do that without meaning to and it can feel patronising. For example, my sister tells me how I 'should' be glad I can conceive, 'should' be grateful for already having a healthy DC, 'should' go and see a counsellor etc, etc and its very annoying. As I said, I'm not suggesting that you would do this, just thought it was worth mentioning.
I was just going on my experience when I miscarried - I did feel very uncomfortable around my friend who was pg, I certainly couldn't speak frankly about how I was feeling and what was happening. I felt like there is enough worry with pregnancy, without having the worst case scenario right there in your face.
If she is staying with family I'd just keep in touch but keep it fairly chatty. "Hope you're doing ok, just want you to know I'm thinking of you. Lets meet up for a coffee when you're back" type thing.
My experience was with an ectopic requiring open surgery, so a little different, but I would say, tell her it;s awful and unfair and you;re thinking of her. Be open that you feel worried about being uncomfortable around one another and give her a few options (eg should you leave her to make contact? Can you drop around and help at home? Can you call round w a dinner to reheat (ie show support but not stay if that;s too tough for you both)? I;d just keep the door open to see what she;d like from you but keep reaching out and sending her love and support (by text or email if you decide not to see each other for a bit). Good luck xx
ps yy re Der's comment re "telling" her how to feel. One of my sisters told me I should feel grateful for my 2 DC the day after I lost DC3. She was swiftly put in her place....!
Offering to drop in any essential supplies has been very helpful to me. And dinners. I'm stuck in bed and friends dropping off more sanitary pads and chocolate has been really appreciated.
Dinners definitely! I had a week in between starting bleeding, finding out it was a MMC and having an ERPC and couldn't get my head around cooking a decent meal so we were eating crap. I would have appreciated someone bringing a reheatable dinner or something!
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