How many of you have heard these phrases?
- It probably would have been deformed.
- Thank goodness you were only in your first trimester.
- It’s not like it was a real baby.
- Just get pregnant again and you’ll feel better.
- It was just a miscarriage.
When friends, family, acquaintances, and coworkers learn of your loss, they are going to feel the need to say something. They feel awkward and unsure. They definitely don’t want to make you cry.
So they try to come up with something to make you feel better. Somehow, they really do believe that downplaying the loss (only first trimester, not a real baby, just a miscarriage) will help you downplay it too. Or, that they can show you a “bright” side (deformed, nature’s way, not the right time.) Or give you advice (get pregnant again, don’t dwell on it, you’re only making yourself depressed.)
I’m not happy with these people. I wish I could be your personal guardian, walking around with duct tape and sealing their mouths. But usually they aren’t really trying to upset you. They want to say something. They don’t know that “I’m so sorry for the loss of your baby. Please let me know if I can do anything,” is plenty.
Ignore them when you can. Just nod and walk away. And when you’re feeling up for it–tell them. And explain to them what to say next time, before they repeat these things to someone else.