My friend is trying to comfort someone who miscarried. “What can I do?” “How can I help?”

We talked about how this is one of those situations that just sucks until its over…

And we don’t have good ways to process miscarriage, we don’t usually have funerals or rituals.

So what is the right thing to do in this situation?

Whatever feels right. Our job, whenever there is mourning involved, is to sit by the person, to be present, to tell that person they are not alone. Our job is to be with people and let feel what they need to feel in this situation.

I have never met this woman, but I still can feel the pain of the loss…so here are some things I have to say to those who have miscarried.

I know that you were a mom, for all too brief a time, you were and are a real mom.

I know that you loved that child with your whole heart, and that you miss her. I know that you had gotten to know her, only a little bit, but that time was enough. Its not fair that you are without your child, its a terrible, horrible loss. And such injustice is angering.

So Be sad, be alone, it makes sense you hurt all over. It hurts because it was real, it was all real..and if you ever need someone to be sad, hurt or alone with, I’m here.

And…if I want to offer help, may I do more than offer “Whatever I can do, call me” because asking you to think of something when you are grieving is the opposite of helpful.

May I instead give a concrete suggestion that you can, unperturbed, say yes or no to. Offers like “Can I make you a meal?” “are there people I can tell for  you?” “Would you like me to stop by to give you a hug?” “Can I hang out with you, or help you get some time alone?”

And I want to tell you, you need to do what feels right for you. Do whatever you need to do. If your given a choice, don’t worry about the “right” way to mourn, just do whichever piece feels the best for you. I encourage you to do whatever you can to keep your connection to your child, to honor and remember her.

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Shannon A Thompson

Author. Speaker. Librarian.

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