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How to support a friend - any tips(3 Posts)
My oldest and dearest friend has just suffered a second miscarriage in two years. We both already have young children but these were very much wanted by her. It looks like it's an age thing (we're both over 40).
There are two complexities. First, last year she moved quite some distance away, so I don't see her as much (and any visit would need to be for a few days) and I worry that's she's not as supported. Second complexity is that between those two complexities I had a third child, so I feel like my situation will remind her.
I really want to support her and love her to bits, she's not someone who finds it easy to look after herself.
Was thinking of sending a text (she's texted me the sad news) and saying how much I am hear and suggesting either a girly weekend or that they could stay with us or we could meet and we will take their kids out for the day so they can have some time off.
What do you think ? Should I just leave alone ?
Why would you leave her alone? Is this what you'd expect her to do if you were in her shoes?
The worst thing people can do is not acknowledge this at all. You need to reach out to her and say you're really sorry for her loss, ask how she is doing, say that you are always there for her and whether there's anything you can do. She may be devastated, or not. She might be looking at this as a death of her baby, or a loss of an embryo. She might be in deep grief, or looking towards the future and trying again, or both. All this may change within days or weeks, too. It's hard to tell without speaking to her first.
But if people around you don't acknowledge what's happened at all, it's probably the worst. If she's reached out to you, then it's probably a sign she needs you there. If you don't know what to say, let her speak whenever she needs to.
Also, she may resent you for having a third child and it's completely natural. Thus will likely ease off in time, but now you can't blame her for it. Equally, she might not feel this way, again, you won't know if you don't speak to her.
Loss of a baby to many people is similar to losing a close family member, with an added layer of having the maternal bond, losing your hopes and expectations, often shock, hormones going up and down, and of course the physical delivery. It's a multi-layered trauma and everyone deals with it differently, depending on the circumstances.
I always say, do not tell people things you wouldn't say if their mother died. You wouldn't come and say "Oh, at least you had a mother" or "You still have your dad". Equally, things like "At least you got pregnant again" or "You have two lovely kids already" are a no-no.
I also think this is a situation that clearly shows you who your friends are and who's in your tribe, so if she's your dearest friend, show her that now. She'll appreciate it xx
Sorry to hear about your friend. I’ve recently had a late miscarriage and found the way my friends were really helpful.
They all made it clear that they would like to come and see me but said they would wait until I was ready 5 weeks on I still haven’t seen most of them and I feel bad about that but they said when I was ready! But my closest friends for the first couple of weeks sent me a text every day asking how I was and if there was anything they could do. As the weeks have passed I don’t hear from them every day but now it’s every 2-3 which is fine, I know they are still there. I even received gifts from friends. Little tokens to help remember my baby by and bring comfort.
Hope this has given you some incite into what can be helpful. I think it’s best to just let your friend know you are there when she needs you x
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