Below is the Ask the Experts Feature for Charleston Moms Blog. All questions and answers can be found Here
Q: How do I prepare myself for pregnancy/having another baby after a miscarriage?
Answer: I am so very sorry for your loss. Please know that the miscarriage was not your fault. You are not alone. Give yourself grace and time to heal. Some women want to try to get pregnant right away while others want time to grieve and mourn their loss. There is no right answer. Some medical professionals recommend waiting 6-12 months to try again. It does take about 2-3 months for your body to recover from a miscarriage. Getting pregnant before your body is ready can increase your risk of another miscarriage. Statistics from the American Pregnancy Association indicate that a woman has at least an 85% of having a healthy baby after a miscarriage.
Research shows that up to 1 in 4 women will experience a miscarriage in their life. In my office, I hear from women that they feel so alone and they do not know anyone else who has gone through this struggle. I tell these women that they are a mother whether they carry their baby in their arms or in their heart. You need time to grieve the loss of your child regardless of how long your carried your baby for. You will always have love for that baby; no other child can replace the child that you lost.
I encourage you to reach out for support from your partner, family, medical professionals, and other women. Communicate with your partner, share your feelings & expectations about going forward. Talk to your medical professionals. It is only natural to be anxious (especially around the time that the miscarriage happened before), so ask your doctor for reassurance that your body is ready to be pregnant again in hopes that you can enjoy the pregnancy.
Contact your doctor, a counselor, or support group if you find that you are struggling. I work with women who are scared to connect emotionally with their child until the baby is born. You may delay telling others about a new pregnancy. As a counselor, I can help you learn to express and come to terms with the broad range of emotions involved in the grieving process, from those that you may expect — sadness, loneliness, exhaustion – to those that come as a surprise, such as relief, anger, and a sense of confusion. Please contact me if you would like more information about therapy or support groups. If I am not a good fit for you, I can get you referrals to other counselors or support groups. There are support groups that meet in person or online.