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It’s a while since my miscarriage, and I don’t feel any better

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Ann was wondering if there was something wrong with her.

She’d had a miscarriage a month ago, and she didn’t feel any better now than when it first happened. In fact, perhaps she even felt worse! …and that was really worrying her.

 

Shouldn’t she just be able to ‘pull herself together’ by now, and ‘get over it’?

She suspected that some of her friends and work colleagues were thinking that. And possibly her husband thought that too.

 

She didn’t feel able to talk to any of them, about how sad and desolate she was feeling – she didn’t feel like herself at all. She felt disconnected. It was very lonely, and she didn’t know what to do about it.

She’d had a miscarriage a month ago, and she didn’t feel any better now than when it first happened. In fact, perhaps she even felt worse! …and that was really worrying her.

Shouldn’t she just be able to ‘pull herself together’ by now, and ‘get over it’?

She suspected that some of her friends and work colleagues were thinking that. And possibly her husband thought that too.

A month or two after a miscarriage, this is a completely normal way to be feeling.

Research carried out at Drexel University in the States, into the emotional impact of having a miscarriage, showed that most women don’t feel back to normal for a minimum of four months. And that the level of grief experienced can actually peak, four to six weeks after the miscarriage.

In other words…

the grief can get worse before it gets better.

There are a number of reasons why this might happen. One of them is to do with how the grieving process unfolds.

 

When Ann miscarried, there was a great deal of shocking stuff going on. She saw and felt some horrible things. It wasn’t a quick process. There was a huge amount to deal with, and take in. And above all, it was overwhelmingly sad and upsetting…

 

When we go through shocking things like this, our body takes care of us. Part of the mechanism of grief is ‘being in a state of shock’. We’re cushioned, to some degree. We go through all of these events a step at a time. There’s so much to cope with that we don’t think about wider implications.

 

Our body protects us from thinking about more than is absolutely necessary, to cope with each moment as it unfolds.

 

But as time goes by, and the immediate shocking events of the miscarriage become things of the past, we gradually become aware of wider thoughts and feelings. And little by little, all the implications of what we’ve experienced, and everything we’ve lost, come into sharp focus. And so the emotional pain can increase.

 

Bit by bit our mind releases little painful ‘realisations’ to our consciousness:

“Oh, that means that won’t happen…”

“And on that date, that won’t happen…”

“Oh, and I hadn’t even thought of that!...”

 

This is part of the grieving process. If we had all of those realisations and feelings all at once, it would be more than we could physically cope with. And so it happens gradually.

 

And by the time it was a month after her miscarriage, Ann had ‘realised’ a whole bunch of things. And she was feeling really desolate.

 

I’m a miscarriage support therapist, and I’ve had twelve miscarriages, so I’ve been through this process many times, and I know how hard it is.

And I also know some ways to make this easier to cope with, that are not commonly known about.

I was able to support Ann, and reassure her that what she was experiencing was completely normal. There wasn’t anything wrong with her. After the initial shock of her miscarriage, it was natural that she should be feeling worse, as the full reality of what she’d lost had really sunk in.

We did some sessions together, and the self-help tools we used together (EFT “tapping” and TAT) helped her to feel more peaceful, and eventually more optimistic. She used them on herself, too, and it was wonderful to see how much more in control they helped to make her feel.

If you are feeling worse after your miscarriage, remember that what you’re feeling is completely normal. It can be helpful to talk to family or friends, or a counsellor or experienced therapist that you feel comfortable with.

I want to encourage you to take kind and gentle care of yourself. If there’s any way I can support you, do please be in touch. And from the bottom of my heart, I wish you all the very best. Take care.

~ Rosalind xxx

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