Miscarriage (Tough Read)

A friend of mine recently suffered a devastating miscarriage. She has been trying to have a baby for a while now, and this was the latest disappointment. She was told by someone, who I am sure meant well, that she should accept G-d’s decision with joy. Accept G-d’s decision – that only comes with time, if ever. With joy? Maybe I am just not on this person’s spiritual level, but I fail to understand how one can be joyful at the loss of life / potential life.

Unfortunately, I have suffered the pain of miscarriage. I know what it’s like to lose a pregnancy. The pain is tremendous. Nothing anyone can say can make it better. People say all the right kind of platitudes – it wasn’t meant to be, the baby would have been born sick, the body knows when there is a problem, you will have other children, be happy with the kids that you have etc. These are all true. But none of them allow for feelings and emotions.

It was exactly 9 years ago and I was 12 weeks pregnant, and I knew something was majorly wrong. Just like I had known almost immediately when I was pregnant, I sensed there was a problem. We went to the doctor who sent us for an emergency ultrasound. The doctor had to break it to us that the baby had died. She was so sweet and gentle, but spoke purposefully. We needed to understand the facts and start to accept them. My body didn’t want to give up the baby by itself – and the doctor told us we’d have to have a procedure to “take the baby out”. Basically, a D&C. I couldn’t have it done straightaway – socialized medicine doesn’t work that quickly. I had to wait 2 days with a dead baby inside me. Two days berating myself – what did I do wrong, was I not happy to be pregnant again, how could I have let this happen etc. Two days of hating how my body had let me down.

I had the surgery. Was awake throughout. I cried copiously. The doctor, not my own – again, socialized medicine – told me that I shouldn’t cry, that I would have another baby – “you people always do”. Nice bedside manner…..NOT!

I came home and cried. I cried for days. The moment I had learned I was pregnant a place in my heart was reserved for that baby. It’s inescapable. I started to dream about this child. Maybe this one will be the daughter that I craved? I already had 3 sons at this point. Losing this baby – I felt like I was too greedy, that maybe I should have been satisfied with the 3 boys I had. It was a major slap in the face. I felt guilty.

Mere days after the surgery, as we were planning the upsherin for our 3 year old, I was sat down by someone close to me, and she explained that sometimes neshamot, souls, need to be perfected just a teeny bit before they go up to shamayim, heaven. That miscarriage was G-d’s way of completing this perfection and I should feel honoured that I was chosen to be the vessel for this. I distinctly remember thinking “she really believes this crap” and wondering how she would have felt if she would have ever had a miscarriage. She had never had one. Even if what she said was true – and I have no idea, never researched the topic because it’s been too painful – the timing of the comment was off. But I know she meant well.

When a woman has just lost a baby – full term, 5 months in or even 5 weeks in, she doesn’t want to hear any platitudes. She is angry and hurting. She feels guilty even though there is nothing she could have done different. She is mad at G-d – why did He do this to me? Why didn’t He let me have this baby? There is not one woman I know, religious or no, that has sat there and said “thank you G-d for taking my baby, thank you for allowing me to perfect this neshama. I feel joy that you singled me out to lose my baby”.

I know we are supposed to serve Hashem with joy, to accept His will with an open heart. While we can understand that logically, accepting it emotionally is a totally different ballgame. We need to grieve a loss. We need to grieve in order that we can move on. Telling us to accept it with joy minimizes that feeling of loss and bereavement. We need to sit and think and cogitate in order to come to terms with losing the baby.

What did I learn from this miscarriage? I learned that I was human. That even though I had given birth to 3 babies in the span of less than 3 years previously, that it didn’t mean that I could have as many babies as I wanted. That my fecundity was not something to be taken for granted. I hadn’t much thought about it before. This was a huge wake up call for me, but I didn’t accept it with joy. I accepted it with tremendous sadness. I do sometimes think about how old that baby would have been if she was allowed to grow to term. What she would have looked like, if she would have been a mommy’s girl or a daddy’s girl. What my boys would have been like with a sister. But I try to nip those thoughts in the bud as they aren’t helpful.

A year later I miscarried again. Even though I had been through it before, it was still tremendously devastating. Again I had started to think of this child in real terms. Even though I knew I was at added risk of miscarriage due to the previous episode. It is so hard to not get those hopes up. The comment that my friend had made to be about the baby’s soul percolated inside my head. And it gave me no comfort. It gave me no joy.

My point is this – telling someone to accept bad news with happiness or joy is just plain wrong. A woman who has miscarried is hurting and sad. They don’t need to hear platitudes of any kind. Sit with them, hug them, wipe their tears. Be there with them as best you can. But if you have nothing constructive to say – say nothing. No words hurt worse than the wrong ones.

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53 responses to “Miscarriage (Tough Read)

  1. What a sad but beautiful post. Your last comment says it all, I think, “No words hurt worse than the wrong ones.”

  2. Such a brave post. Thanks for opening up in your own experiences about this. I agree that it’s stupid sometimes to hear the trite words of comfort, and only someone who’s been through it can really say something meaningful.

    On another note, I take it you are against socialized medicine?

  3. Thanks for sharing your personal experience and insight.

  4. Thanks for sharing your story. I’m trying not to cry here at work!

  5. Thank you for sharing this sensitive and heartfelt piece with us. My heart goes out to you, and I’m so sorry for the losses you’ve suffered :o( Consider yourself hugged.

  6. Lovely post. I never experienced miscarriage BH but I did only have one child because we couldn’t have more. The wrong words are just the wrong words…I agree, I never do get those people who say that G-d bestows tragedy and hurt and we’re supposed to be joyful about it.

  7. I learned that while we do believe that such things happen for the good, that they are sometimes atonement, etc, that you should never say such a thing to someone who is suffering. If it helps YOU deal with your own situation great (a level to strive for), but not to be so quick to gam zu l’tova someone else. I hated when someone told me “Well at least you know you can get pregnant, think of all the people who can’t do that!” NOT helpful.

    When I had my miscarriage I went to my Rabbi and asked what Hashem was trying to tell me through it, if there was a reason for it. And he told me it was none of my business. Hashem wasn’t teaching me a lesson, He needed it to happen for whatever reason and I shouldn’t concern myself with that when I had enough to worry about physically and emotionally. That conversation helped to ease my guilt. I stopped thinking of it as a punishment, that I cost a life because of some shortcoming I had. The anniversary is coming up, and whenever it passes I think about what could have been, it’s natural to do so.

    Thanks for putting this out there. When I had mine I didn’t know anyone else besides my mom who had had one since no one usually speaks about them, which just compounds the pain because it made me feel abnormal.

  8. The Birth Whisperer

    Hadassah, thank you so much for posting this. 5 years ago this week, I also suffered a miscarriage when I was 14 weeks pregnant. For me it was the saddest time in my life. It was only because I had other children that I had to force myself to get out of bed each day. Some years before I had done a training for perinatal bereavement. One would think I would therefore have all the answers for myself – but I didn’t. It was so different to be in it myself then when I had helped others through it. I’m the kind of person that when I go through a difficult period – I always try to see the good in it and I personally learned alot about myself because of it.

  9. i have always wondered, tho, what the fathers feel when their wives have had a miscarriage. are there any guys out there brave enough to share their feelings with us?

  10. when i had my miscarriages i was also told not to talk about it. the way i heal is through talking and writing. and BW – i totally agree. having other children around helped me get through it.

  11. I can tell you my hubby said, that we will just try again. He has been immensely supportive and loving. He told me it wasn’t my fault and i didn’t do anything wrong, and i am not a terrible person. He did say that a body knows when something is wrong and he said obviously his sperm didn’t do a good job. He actually tried to take the blame away from me and he keeps saying that it might be his “boys” and not my eggs.

  12. shorty – your husband is a prince amongst men.

  13. The Birth Whisperer

    I have some books on the subject. Men grieve differntly then women – and who can blame them. From the minute a woman finds out she is pregnant, everything revolves around it. Any future event, holiday, vacation etc…she is always thinking where in her pregnancy she will be. A bond is formed imediatly. Anything she puts in her mouth – she thinks about whether or not it’s good for the baby. We cannot expect men to feel the same way. They also don’t have the hormonal changes. My husband was with me when we found out and we were both upset. When one week turned into another and I was still grieving – he couldn’t understand it. He had moved on.

  14. The Birth Whisperer

    What helped me tremendously was going to a monthly support group for pregnancy loss. It was my lifeline. Many hospitals offer these free of charge. It was a place where everyone understood me, understood what I was going though, and didn’t think I was some lunatic woman. My husband didn’t go, he didn’t feel the need. I respected that. There were very few husbands there.

  15. I remember when I was in 8th grade my mother had a similar situation, the baby’s heart stopped working, so they had to do surgery and take the baby out. My mother had only told me about it, because she needed me to take my little sister to school so that my father could take her to the hospital. I remember she came home and looked different, I felt so sad and sorry for her. I always get queasy from looking at people after they get a surgery, the yellow coloring, and swelling. I had a hard time looking at my own mother! I was so sad that I wasn’t going to have another baby in the family, after that my parents stopped having children. Although I guess my parents took it well, because I don’t remember my mother crying over it, unless it was too early in the stage or something, I dunno. But I can imagine the pain and suffering of loosing a potential baby.

    That is a great important lesson, that makes me believe stronger that we shouldn’t regulate how many children people can have based on their monetary status, because who are we to judge who should have a baby and not. That there are people who aren’t fortunate to have babies, so we shouldn’t take it for granted.

  16. It is a loss. We have never had the experience directly. I have alwys been supportive and said only words of comfort, to say otherwise is insensitive and wrong. How could I know if the couple could have another child? As for your doctor, what a foolish person to want to alienate people in such a flippant manner.

    The wisdom of the years has taught me the following lesson – if you should be in a position to experience this, then do only two things be supportive and say only words of comfort. If you take the path of “do no harm”, then you will have gained a measure of respect in the eyes of everyone.

    For all of you who have experienced such a loss, my sympathies and admiration for pushing on. For those who have had other children, rejoice in thier laughter, applaud their accomplishments and dry their tears. For those who have had no others or can have no others – live for what the days bring you. Try and make the world a better place – one word, one deed, one person, one day at a time. These actions and words will not erase the pain or the memory, but will help move the world alone and help in the larger concept of Tikun Olam and just maybe your will find that closure or peace.

    While not entirely on topic I offer you all this poem. It describes that delicate dnce of life we do every day – some of us are better dancers than others….


    There is a trick
    in walking between
    the here and then
    and the now and when.
    A trick of poise.
    A trick of grace.
    A trick of knowing
    when to shift
    and when to dodge.
    One learns these things
    as one stumbles,
    and falls or
    catches themselves.
    Shifting, twisting
    dodging in an odd
    dance of awkward grace.
    All the time moving
    forward and forward.
    Each one of us
    dancing and shifting,
    swayed by Life and
    the winds of change.

    So to all who tread upon this stage of life – dance, dance, dance.

  17. Thanks for sharing this. I just consoled a friend who lost her niece. Its hard enough for me to comfort a mourner but at least we are able to remind the person of the good memories they have of the deceased. This is a different ballgame altogether and not everyone realizes it. Its a much much different type of loss, so yes, words must be chosen much more carefully.

  18. The Birth Whisperer

    My sister wrote this after she had a miscarriage

    To My Child

    I never heard your heartbeat

    Your form I did not see

    Yet for ten wonderful weeks

    You were a part of me.

    But then, amidst my shaking tears

    So suddenly you did depart

    But my dear child, you always have

    A special place in my heart.

    It seemed to me it was your wish

    To keep from me concealed

    And yet some comforting words of strength

    Through you, were to me revealed:

    That in Shomayim there is a special place

    Where all Neshamos dwell

    So lofty is this place on high

    That no earthly being can tell.

    And all these souls have a destiny

    On earth they must fulfill

    Some have years, while others few

    According to His will.

    But it must be, secrets are told

    My child, you surely know

    That ‘ere Moshiach will appear

    All souls must come below.

    Were you, my child, that kind of soul

    Whose nature so sublime

    Could not descend upon this earth

    So went before your time?

    Above your head there beamed a light

    That across the world did shine

    While a Malach taught deep Torah secrets

    To you, child of mine.

    Now you dwell in places high

    Beside the heavenly throne

    While I remain to live my life

    Without my child, alone.

    I am, my child, but a mother

    And to Hashem I pray

    Please Hashem, grant me a child

    That will come down to stay.

    But not in vain was your coming here

    For I carried you inside

    That such Kedusha filled me then

    I think with awe and pride!

    You have never truly left me

    Perhaps this was part of your task

    I have gained much from your presence here

    And in this comfort I bask.

    Some day my child, I know it will be

    When my task is complete

    In a world that is everlasting

    You and I will meet.

    And I will hold you in my arms

    As I so long to do

    And I will tell you my dear child

    How much I love you!

    And also that you and I

    Helped in our way

    In your short time upon this world

    To bring closer Moshiach’s day.

  19. I just got reminded of a song I had found that I really liked and did a music presentation on it for my music class in college. The song is called “Precious Child” by Karen Taylor-Good. You can listen to it at her website for free, and download it too.

  20. RowanThorn – as usual your kindness shines through, and your words moved me to tears.

    BW – your sister’s poem is so special, so heartfelt. so on point. thank you for sharing that with us.

    Susanne – you make an excellent point, memories of a person that once lived helps – in this situation there are only dreams.

    thank you all for commenting – i am so deeply touched by the reaction to this piece. keep the comments coming.

  21. SO sad….

  22. A Truly heart wrenching post. On a side note, the socialized medicine in Montreal is frightening!

  23. Thank you for sharing, very touching.

  24. Such a beautiful post. Thanks for being so frank and honest. When it comes to these things, I have no words. I don’t know what to say.
    B”H, my pregnancies ended full-term and with healthy babies. I live with other disappointments.
    I understand that the hormones of a misscarriage can be truly devestating. There is a definite physical reason for the emotional pain and turbulance.

  25. Thanks for sharing. I would imagine a husbands response would be the opposite of the euphoria he feels upon a healthy birth. Not as deeply emotional as his wife’s, yet deeply felt sadness all the same.
    What do you think a Rabbi’s response should be? a husband’s? a friend? Is there a “right thing” to say? Do you think Yonit’s Rabbi’s words would have comforted you or your friend?

  26. I wonder if it is a Jewish thing to keep a pregnancy a secret before 12th week. I never miscarried, but I make sure to let some friends know about pregnancy early on. It’s so devastating by itself, so why should a woman also be left without support of friends just because she hadn’t told them?

  27. Jewish Side – that song you posted above made me cry and touched me so deeply. I am putting the lyrics here.

    In my dreams, you are alive and well
    Precious child, precious child
    In my mind, I see you clear as a bell
    Precious child, precious child
    In my soul, there is a hole
    That can never be filled
    But in my heart, there is hope
    ‘Cause you are with me still

    In my heart, you live on
    Always there never gone
    Precious child, you left too soon
    Tho’ it may be true that we’re apart
    You will live forever… in my heart

    In my plans, I was the first to leave
    Precious child, precious child
    But in this world, I was left here to grieve
    Precious child, my precious child

    In my soul, there is a hole
    That can never be filled
    But in my heart there is hope
    And you are with me still

    In my heart you live on
    Always there, never gone
    Precious child, you left too soon,
    Tho’ it may be true that we’re apart
    You will live forever… in my heart

    God knows I want to hold you,
    See you, touch you
    And maybe there’s a heaven
    And someday I will again
    Please know you are not forgotten until then

    In my heart you live on
    Always there never gone
    Precious child, you left too soon
    Tho’ it may be true that we’re apart
    You will live forever… in my heart

  28. rabbi Tzvi – i am considering your question – when i have an answer i will let you know, altho it is quite possible that there is nothing anyone could have said that could have eased my burden.

    Anon 2.01pm – we dont tell before 12 weeks so as not to put an evil eye on the pregnancy, I believe. can anyone expand on this?

  29. HSM and anon 12.01 – the general Jewish way is to keep things quiet (tznuah). The Gemara says there is a special blessing on things that are hidden from the eye, (hence the Jewish affinity for the diamond business). In this case you also have the additional reason of evil eye: not wanting anyone to subconsciously make an ayin hara. Therefore until 12 weeks which is when women generally start ‘showing’ people like to keep things quiet.
    There is also a purely practical point to this as well, in the tragic event of a miscarriage no one wants to have to renotify everyone. Most miscarriages are in the first 12 weeks.
    Of course all this doesn’t apply once there was a miscarriage and if one finds it beneficial to speak things out I don’t see why not.

  30. What a powerful post.

    I have a close friend whose sister died when we were in high school. Our menahel, a truly great man, went to his house to see him during shiva. He, an elderly man, walked straight to my friend and embraced him. They hugged for a few moments and cried together. My friend told me that was the greatest comfort from anyone during the entire shiva.

    I think that is the only fair and meaningful response in a situation like this.

    As a husband, I can imagine that the husband will also be very hurt but he will also be empathizing with your pain. What I mean is, he will be saddened by the loss of the unborn child, but he will also be saddened by the hurt and pain of the mother, his wife. A husband hates to see the woman he loves most in pain. Thus, even though they are both on a smaller scale he will feel and experience a double dose of sorrow.

  31. Powerful and eloquent post. Have to think that a man will not have formed quite the same bond with the fetus…and any grief will not be as visceral or personal. Your mileage will vary, of course. Everyone grieves differently, right? Have not had to deal with the challenge personally or by proxy, so this is just my best guess.

  32. unfortunately, i feel that some things happen that we are not meant to understand & sometimes there is nothing good that can be gleaned from the particular tragedy. i guess i don’t believe that everything that happens is for the best b/c so many tragic events that happen in life are so devastating that it is nearly impossible for the mere mortal to find any silver lining to the particular tragedy or to even think that they know the reason why the tragedy occurred in the first place. i think as humans we feel that we have a right or a need to understand why something happened but so many things happen in our lives & in the world around us that we mere mortals cannot & will never understand. It is frustrating, but the bottom line is that G-d is in control & we cannot know the reason why bad things happen to good ppl-in my opinion. BH, i have never experienced the pain of miscarriage & i therefore cannot fully empathize with others who have experienced the loss try as i might. many times there are no words that will comfort b/c the tragedy is just so overwhelming (such as when a single mom of 7 i know lost 4 of her children in a devastating house fire). in times of tragedy i think friends & neighbors must try to be there to give moral support to someone who is grieving over the loss (be it of a child or a fetus) & i think sometimes we feel that the grieving person needs to hear our words b/c we think they will help alleviate the pain, but unfortunately sometimes the words that are meant to comfort will have the opposite effect on the listener. sometimes the non-verbal approach is more effective than trying to use words when there are no words…

  33. Anybody who has not experienced a miscarriage can almost do so through your eloquent writing.
    You do not mention how your husband dealt with the miscarriage. I hope that he gave you great comfort at the time
    I hug you from afar.

  34. Tzvi Haber: Thank you for explanation. The only answer I have heard so far from frum Jewish people was, “So that noone would know that you miscarried”. That makes it seem, a miscarried woman is a loser who can’t carry on pregnancy, which I think is not fair and not correct.

  35. The Birth Whisperer

    While on the topic of husbands, one part I found so difficult is that when I had the miscarriage – the person I wanted to be held by and hugged the most – my husband – wasn’t allowed to hug me because of my status as a niddah.

  36. J – i don’t remember much other than he was definitely solicitous and helpful with the other kids. my personal misery was so deep that i was mostly unaware of what was going on around me.

    BW – i totally empathize. just wish there would have been a way to suspend the laws of niddah for that important hug. a husbands arms around us at a sad time in our life is worth more than anything.

  37. Hadassah: I was browsing around a blog looking at blog tips, and then I saw a link to a post that struck my attention, it was: Dad deal with miscarriage too. I thought you might be interested. It talks about a fathers perspective and the different emotions a man goes through.

  38. Thank you for your courage. I agree that, as with any loss, an integral part of coming to terms with your loss and beginning to heal is feeling safe to talk about it. Hopefully, your example will help other women who may unfortunately find themselves in a similar situation, lo aleinu…


  39. My wife in her very first pregnancy had a very late term fetus death (severely malformed fetus, which would have had a very difficult and painful life, had she lived) something like in the 5th month. This was many years ago. I do recall the guttural pain I felt, but it wasn’t for the loss of the baby, rather for my dear wife. I recall her collapsing on me in the elevator coming down from the Ultrasound and being utterly speechless. This was compounded by the need to now “birth” this dead child. I think my personal feeling was simply emptiness, but my wife to this day (16 years and 8 kids later, with a few early miscarriages thrown in) resents the fact that I was able to simply move on with my life, as we all must do eventually.

    I don’t think it’s expected or even possible to feel “joy” at such an event.
    A Rebbe of mine once pointed out – Chazal say we must bless Hashem in the sad events as we do in the happy ones. BUT – we don’t say “Hatov VHameitiv” on sad events, because we are incapable of seeing/feeling the good in them, so we must say “Dayan HaEmes” – this is truth, but not good. Anyone who feels “joy” is simply deluding him/herself. Only in the future – when we can fully “see” Hashem’s true ways – will we be able to say “Hatov VHameitiv” on sad events.

  40. Amazing writing. Heartfelt sympathies for your losses, those who have suffered and will always suffer from having lost an unborn child. What a gentle forum for this very personal topic and a way to understand what and how horrible it must be to have this happen.

  41. Chayim- Your post really spoke to me. Being able to accept such tragedies as “truth” is incredibly profound.

  42. hadassah:

    a powerful, well written and courageous post.

    tzvi haber:

    i find this to be a rather selective application of the imperative to be “tzanua.” could you also please clarify the diamond comment.

  43. Thank you for writing this. It would have helped me very much two years ago. To Rabbi Haber, while what my (orthodox well respected) Rabbi said to me didn’t directly help, what he said to my husband definitely did. He told my husband to do whatever he needed to do to help me through it to be a whole person again, specifically allowing him to give me a hug after it happened was really helpful in my healing process.
    Tangentially something that was really difficult for me after it happened was going to the mikvah. Despite trying to look at it as a fresh start, it brought back a flood of bad memories. Did other women feel this way?

  44. The Birth Whisperer

    Lynne and all,

    I wish I would have thought to ask the Rabbi about that – we didn’t even tell our Rabbi about it. ( a few weeks later at a wedding I told my Rebitzen about it) My husband felt very badly for me and it was hard for him to see me cry – I think it always has been hard for him when I cry. If I would have asked him for hugs he would have given them to me and I remember not telling him how badly I needed them so that he shouldn’t have to go against halacha. He must have thought that going to the mikvah would “cure” me. I remember coming home from the mikvah and telling him that I just want him to hold me. He did and he must have sensed that I was very emotional and fighting back the tears. He told me that everything was okay now and that I shouldn’t cry. For about half a second I tried not to and then burst out crying. I remember saying ” I lost a baby and I still feel like crying”. It may sound crazy but him holding me and me crying was very therapeutic. (for those that know me, I apologize for the personal post)

  45. Pingback: Links on Step-Parenting, Miscarriage, Mesorah, Weddings, Homosexuality, Music Appreciation, and the Bloggers Convention | A Mother in Israel

  46. When my daughter was sick, I got several comments that enraged me. Things like “G-d only gives you what you can handle” or if I was stricter in my observance, this wouldn’t have happened. I know these comments are well-meaning, but I have to admit I thought very bad thoughts when they were said to me. But they taught me, as you said, how to comfort someone going throught a difficult situation: mostly by not saying anything but being there for them.

    (Once I said to someone going through something “I’m so sorry” and they said, what do you have to be sorry it’s not your fault).

  47. This is the first time I visit your blog (through A Mother in Israel) –

    Thank you for speaking about miscarriages. I lost my very first baby in a “missed abortion” (the heart stopped beating and this was discovered during a regular ultrasound check) in my 12th week of pregnancy.
    Talking to friends and writing poems helped me a lot during this difficult time. The friends who are just “there” for you are best – they didn’t need to speak, just hold me and let me cry, talk, be silent …

  48. I wrote a post on a sort of related topic. I commented above that I don’t think I remember my mother crying when she had a miscarriage, and then I realized I’ve actually never seen her cry before. I think she was trying to be strong, as not to scare us children by crying. Well Friday night she actually did get tears in her eyes, and it caused such powerful emotions to go threw me.

  49. 7 years ago, and I still remember it. I cried and I cried. It died when it was only 12 weeks old, just after we told everyone that we are going to have a baby. It was devastating – but I calmed my self saying that was nature will get rid of I should not keep either. God created a nature so we can live better and function within the system. When something is broken in the system it gets fixed by itself – I accepted it, wasn’t happy about it but accepted.

  50. what a wonderful post. I had a still birth 18 months ago at 7 months, and had to wait 3 days from finding out at a routine scan to give birth to a dead baby. I found like many other posters, a hug was the best thing people could say- and all the helpful, well meaning comments were worse than nothing- yes, there was a reason for it, yes maybe a prenature baby may have been very sick- but if someone is in an accident and has a finger cut off, you don’t say to them at the time “at least you didn’t lose your hand” if your heart is “broken” it hurts. I really found that time did heal, and my husband was wonderfully supportive at the time, and having to get up to face our other 2 children was sometimes the only thing that got me out of bed each day.

    We have since been blessed with a beautiful baby girl,who we really appreciate, but I still often think about the baby we lost, and it feels that now it is harder to grieve, since I should “be over it” by now and have had another baby- I feel that baby is now a “shadow” baby

  51. We have had 3 miscarriages. It is very difficult for my wife because of all the things you wrote – emotional, physical & spiritual. Of course it was devastating for me….but I see how it is not what my wife experiences. For her it is deeper and sharper pain.

    But the emotional roller coaster is awful for both partners. it is not always clear if it really is a miscarriage. then there is waiting. then there is decision on how to proceed….D&C? wait for natural solution? Some friends were very helpful because they offered to watch our daughter when we needed, or to make food when we were just too busy running to appointments. Others just said “that is awful, I am so sorry” which was also so good to hear. I suggest people do that – be helpful with tachlis, or say something that shows you care. While my wife did get chizuk once from a Rav who mentioned that we don’t know why this happens and it could be a neshama that had to come into the world ever so briefly…..in general, I suggest people stay away from that path. Just be helpful.

    • Absolutely agree. Totally agree that people make the most inappropriate comments at the most horrible times. And while we want to think they mean well, reality is that they do not mean well at all. That’s right. Many, if not all, people are self-righteous enough to feel compelled to say such inappropriate things and the rest say such things because they themselves have never been through the painful experience. I’m not saying you should beat them up or fight with them, but if more people called them on those cruel comments, and called them on it immediatlu, then they would think twice about making such comments to the next person , saving more heartache for another person the next time around.

  52. People need to think before they speak. If a woman lost her husband would you say, “He wasn’t so great anyway.” or “your next one,will be even better.” or “G-d just gave him to you for a little while to correct his soul, but now that he’s been nagged enough, it was time to go.” or ” be happy you don’t have to pick up his dirty socks”. I’ve heard the equivalent..

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