I lost two babies this year through miscarriage. It was horrifically painful and I’m still dealing with chronic anxiety. Imagine a recurrent dream where the boogey man is coming after your children. As if the actual deaths weren’t bad enough, I’ve got severe anxiety and nightmares to contend with, plus the insensitivity of the human race.
I still carry resentment toward friends and family who chose not to support me when I was dealing with the losses. Granted it was not blatant, as in they witnessed me bleeding in the middle of the night, then turned around and skedaddled. Rather, it was the act of disregard as if losing babies in the womb didn’t really count.
When I told a friend on the phone that I had miscarried, I started whimpering, but tried hard to cover it up. She knew I was having a tough time getting the words out. She asked how far along I was when I miscarried. I felt that detail was irrelevant, but when I answered her, she chided, “That’s nothing!” I politely continued the conversation, but haven’t talked to her since.
Another friend sent a birth announcement with zero acknowledgement that I’d miscarried. No phone call, no sympathy card, nada. Sucks to be you, but we’re happily going on with our lives!
I am trying not to be bitter, but these are people I consider friends. Not heartless automatons, but friends. What is the point of having friends if they aren’t there to care for or support you? These are friends I’ve sent presents to for every rugrat they’ve birthed, sympathy cards for sick family members, yet when it comes to my own heartache…CRICKETS!
I try to reason that some people just don’t like talking about death. I get it. It’s a hard topic to broach, but shit, then send a card or friggin email. I’m not talking about attending a grief counseling session with me. How hard is it to send an email these days?
Google sympathy greeting: “I am sorry for your loss.”
Copy and paste sympathy greeting.
Does it get any easier than that? Takes less than 30 seconds. Less than a minute to tell a friend who is in pain that you care, that you’re there for them.
Right after my first miscarriage, we had a baby shower for my coworker. I didn’t feel like going; it was just too much to bear within days of my loss. I sat at my cube while the party started. A coworker who knew that I had miscarried came over and said, “You need to be in the conference room right now!” It took everything I had to not start crying in front of my work colleagues as each present was opened. “Look at that outfit. So darling. One more picture!” I tried to shut down and pretend I was anywhere else but that workplace hell.
Please forgive me if I’m still angry. I am working very hard to deal with the emotional scars resulting from back-to-back losses.
Sometimes I’m ok with babies and pregnancies and motherhood, but other times I am not. If you can try to be patient with me.
I should note that the negative experiences were overshadowed by the support we received from so many, including our online community which was genuinely thoughtful and prayerful during the past six months. I am trying to think positively and be grateful that I conceived little baby beans, albeit short-lived. It’s not an easy thing to wrap my mind around, but I am trying.
Have you ever experienced something similar, where you felt a friend wasn’t there for you? How did you handle it?
What has helped you overcome emotional pain?