A woman's physical health is important during and after a miscarriage, but her emotional health should not be ignored. The loss of a pregnancy can be felt just as strongly as a loss of a child. Women can also experience postpartum depression after a miscarriage. There is a wide variety of emotional treatments, including grief counseling, depression or anxiety medications, or simply opening up to friends and family. There are plenty of resources out there to help both the expectant mother and her partner.
Here are a few common tips for dealing with the loss of pregnancy:
- Decide for yourself. Well-meaning friends and family will suggest ways to deal with your pain, but right after the miscarriage, don't do anything that makes you feel uncomfortable, such as returning baby clothes.
- Take your time. There is no set time limit on how long you can grieve. As the cliché says, take it one day at a time and do things on your schedule.
- Know your triggers. Seeing a baby, going to a baby shower or even walking past the Baby Gap could cause a swelling of emotion. It's OK to avoid these situations until you feel strong enough to handle them.
- Postpone major decisions. When you're experiencing an especially emotional time, big decisions -- like buying a house, selling a car or changing your career -- should be delayed.
- Don't cut your partner off. Keep the lines of communication open.
- Set up a support network. While some friends and family may not understand the degree of your grief, and many are sure not to know what to say, they will all probably offer support. Many women also find comfort in going to support groups or joining an online chat group.