We have all heard the golden rule of not sharing a pregnancy announcement until you are past the first trimester when you are in the “safe” zone. If you find out sometime around four weeks that is approximately 8 weeks, 56 days, or 1344 hours of silence. You’re expected to go about your life as normal and if the worst happens you just continue as if nothing happened. After experiencing my own losses I find this societal pressure to be silent the most damaging to those who have experienced or will experience miscarriage. It perpetuates the idea that this is something to be ashamed of and should be kept hidden. I wish during my losses that I felt empowered and safe enough to share the excitement of a positive pregnancy test before our dreams turned to nightmares.
My husband and I started trying for a baby in late 2016. In 2018 I experienced a rare form of miscarriage called a molar pregnancy. Miscarriage to us seemed like just one more life trauma that “they” say to keep to yourself added to the pile of going through infertility in silence. Up until our loss I stayed mostly quiet about what we were going through; keeping answers to inquiries vague and trying to pretend it did not affect my daily life. Once it was confirmed that the pregnancy was not viable after weeks of being in ultrasound limbo I finally reached a breaking point. I remember furiously typing out a social media post detailing everything we’d been through to this point only for it to end in a loss. I put two years of frustration into an Instagram post....and the most amazing thing happened. Our friends and family rallied around us with physical support and love which we desperately would need through six months of being benched from trying for a baby due to the molar pregnancy.
I realized that we could have had this kind of support from the beginning - the long weeks when we were waiting to see what would become of this pregnancy. The years we had been going through fertility treatment. I learned in therapy that attempting to protect yourself from trauma will not make a potential bad outcome any easier.
"Healing is not linear; it has its ups and downs and a strong support system is vital to get through it."
I wish I had celebrated everyday of that pregnancy instead of hiding away in fear. From that point on I began sharing what we were going through in semi-real time. Our people celebrated, encouraged, and picked us up when we were down along the trials of required 6 month monitoring for molar pregnancy recurrence, through IVF...and eventually through our pregnancy with our rainbow baby boy. It’s a beautiful thing to know that he’s been celebrated by people who love him literally every second of his life.
To those going through loss - you are not alone. Don’t feel the need to keep positive or negative news to yourself; people love you and can handle and support all the hard parts life has to offer. If you’re not quite ready to be out to people in real life, the loss and infertility communities on social media are amazing and can be there to support and uplift you when you need it. There are more people ready to support and comfort you than you think.
Brittney currently blogs and details her life at BellBelleBella.com. She lives in Atlanta, GA along with her husband and newborn son. She and her husband began their struggle with infertility in 2016. Along the way they have tried ovulation induction, IUI, and ultimately IVF. During their journey they experienced two losses: a rare molar pregnancy and a biochemical pregnancy. Their rainbow baby boy was born in August 2019 after a successful IVF transfer.