Sunday, February 24, 2013

When to spill the beans and the fear of miscarriage

Currently, I know a dozen or so pregnant women. I have never known so many pregnant women. I have only known about 4 or 5 pregnant woman at any given time.  But now that I am a mom, I am hanging out with more moms than ever before. Some of these expecting ladies will be first time moms and some are having their second child. Some ladies announced their pregnancy as early as 6 weeks and some waited till 14 weeks.  I remember when I was pregnant Goggling, “when can I tell people that I am pregnant?”.  As if there was some law or hardline rule about when to share happy news with the people you love.

We told my father as soon as we knew I was pregnant because that was my father’s request. He had been excited for a while to have a grandbaby finally living on U.S. soil.  I am pretty sure we told a few other close family and friends but I really cannot remember. Thanks to Facebook, I found this wall post from October 20th 2010:

“Yesterday I got to hear the heartbeat of my baby. And it is starting to look like a baby instead of a squiggle. It was too cool! So it is really official, I am 12 1/2 weeks pregnant, we expect our bundle of joy May 1st. Can't wait to find out if it will be a boy or girl.”  

So why did I wait to announce my news? Part of me wanted to keep the news to a very select few people so it would just be us sharing an exciting secret. Another part of me was afraid that I might lose the baby so I wanted to wait until the first trimester was over. This is an extremely common fear and one of the main reasons people wait to announce their pregnancy.

According to , the likelihood of a miscarriage is 70% in the first week, then drops to 30% in the 2nd week, 10% in weeks 3-6 and 5% in weeks 7-12, 3% during the 2nd trimester and 1% during the 3rd trimester. says that “Approximately 1 in 4 pregnancies end in miscarriage; some estimates are as high as 1 in 3. If you include loss that occurs before a positive pregnancy test, some estimate that 40% of all conceptions result in loss.” I know of women who have had miscarriages and my heart goes out to them. I am sure we all know someone who has had a miscarriage even if we are unaware of the miscarriage.  It is something people do not talk about even though it is fairly common.

I have not been through that experience and hope I never do so I can only speculate how I would handle such a loss. I am a person who is very open and honest. I think I would talk about it and I am sure I would write about here to help me work through my feelings. I always feel better after talking and writing about issues. I think it would be helpful for women who experience this type of loss to talk openly about it in a safe environment. That might not be your Facebook wall but maybe it is if that will help you deal with your emotions. I find it can be easier to write something that is too say to say out loud.

If you have never been pregnant, you might not understand that as soon as you know there is a life growing inside of you, you begin to bond with that life and think about your future together. If you lose that baby before you even knew it was there, you will still think about what could have been. It is hard to grieve and morn any death. I can imagine it is more difficult to deal with the loss of someone who never lived outside of your own body because people might not understand and won’t know what to say.  People might not understand how you can be so upset over someone who never saw the light of day and people in general don’t know what to do when a person is dealing with death.

I try to never let fear hold me back from doing something.  Announce your pregnancy when you want to, in a way you feel comfortable whether that be phone, text, email, or Facebook. If you just got a positive pregnancy test and want to tell someone, go ahead.  If your pregnancy ends in loss, I really hope you will tell someone and talk with supportive people. You may find that you know other women who have been through miscarriage and can support each other

Did you know that October 15th is National Miscarriage and Infant Loss Remembrance Day?  It was started by President Ronald Reagan in 1988. Here is a great site to learn more about it

While writing this post I found many websites dedicated to breaking the silence surrounding miscarriage.  I thought it was very well put on when she wrote: 

"I was angry because I am expected to carry a triple burden: the burden of fertility; the burden of pregnancy itself; and perhaps most of all, the burden of silence if a pregnancy is lost."

Let's try to make our burdens as light as possible.

No comments:

Post a Comment