How Do You Announce a Pregnancy to someone who just had a miscarriage?
About 10-15% of known pregnancies end in miscarriage. Chances are you know someone who has experienced early pregnancy loss.
If you and many of your friends are following similar life timelines (i.e. getting married and starting a family around the same time), you may even find yourself pregnant at the same time a friend has just, unfortunately, miscarried.
So how do you tell someone who had a miscarriage that you’re pregnant? How do you share your own happy news while being sensitive to their loss?
First of all, thank you for trying to figure it out.
As someone who has experienced multiple miscarriages, I never stop feeling a little bit sad when I hear pregnancy announcements or see pregnant women.
Even though time heals, pregnancy announcements still remind me of my pregnancy losses. They remind me of how everything ended before it was supposed to.
When Someone Close To You Is Pregnant After You’ve Had a Miscarriage (Our Story)
My first pregnancy ended in a miscarriage. We were newly married and had plans to start a family soon since we were already in our early 30s. It took us two months of actively tracking my cycle before we got our first BFP (that’s big fat positive for anyone not familiar with the “trying to conceive (TTC)” lingo).
We found out I miscarried during our first ultrasound at 8 weeks. The baby had no heartbeat. Even now, five years, two kids, and another miscarriage later, thinking back on that day is so hard.
It was devastating.
My body didn’t realize the pregnancy had ended. After a few weeks of waiting to see if something would happen naturally, I decided to have a D&C to help everything move along.
My husband and I got through it the best that we could.
Then, about a month after my D&C, we found out someone very close to us was pregnant.
She cried as she told us, which made me want to cry too. But, I hugged her and said congratulations.
I was surprised to feel I was genuinely happy for her. I realized I could still be happy for her and be sad for myself.
It was hard for her to announce her pregnancy to us right after our miscarriage. I know she tried to share the news with us in a sensitive way.
For me, it was difficult to know she was pregnant and I wasn’t. I wished I still had a baby growing inside me like she now did. It was hard thinking that our babies would have grown up so close in age if I hadn’t had a miscarriage.
A Happy Ending After Miscarriage
Luckily, for us, our pregnancy journey didn’t end there. We waited for one cycle after my D&C before we started trying to conceive again. We got pregnant the next month and our rainbow baby was born that summer.
I hope that whoever you know who has experienced a miscarriage has a happy ending too. One of the best things you can do for them is to just acknowledge their loss and be sensitive that the grieving process is different for everyone.
If you are pregnant and want to tell someone who has miscarried, here are some tips for announcing your news.
Remember: you are not obligated to hold back your happiness because someone else is grieving. But, as their friend, it’s important to be sensitive to their loss and all the feelings that come with it.
Please also know that everyone handles loss differently. Some of these suggestions may not work for all women going through a miscarriage.
How to tell a friend who miscarried that you’re pregnant
1. share the news yourself
Make sure YOU are the one who tells your friend about your pregnancy. Don’t wait until she finds out on social media or someone else mistakenly spills the beans.
Finding out from someone else or in an impersonal way, such as a Facebook or Instagram announcement, could make her feel like you didn’t care enough to tell her yourself. Or, like you don’t value your friendship with her.
If you don’t tell her that you’re pregnant yourself, she might even feel like you think she’s broken and can’t possibly be happy for you, which is hurtful in its own way.
Miscarriage can be isolating. Not telling her that you’re pregnant may make her feel more isolated and like you’re purposefully leaving her out of your life now that she’s lost a baby.
2. Consider texting your announcement to her
If you’re very close, you may choose to tell your friend that you’re pregnant in person. However, it might be easier for your friend who has just miscarried to tell her you’re pregnant in a text message.
If she reads the news that you’re pregnant in a text message, she doesn’t have to hide her emotions from you. This can give her time to process her emotions and respond back in a way that she would like to be able to respond.
3. Don’t Tell Her All The Details
Unless she asks specific questions, don’t go into details about your pregnancy right away.
I say this especially if you got pregnant without even really trying or weren’t planning on having another baby. Knowing how seemingly easy getting pregnant and carrying a healthy baby happens for some people can make pregnancy loss feel even more devastating.
4. Keep in touch After Your Share Your News
After you’ve told your friend who miscarried that you’re pregnant, try to keep in touch like you normally would. Don’t constantly bring up your pregnancy or talk about preparing for the baby.
Keep conversations focused on whatever else you talked about before pregnancy. Your crazy boss, your annoying in-laws, funny things that happened when you were together in the past.
Miscarriage can feel isolating and while your friend might need some time alone to process things, she also may need your support and for you to just be her friend (even if it’s from a distance).
5. Ask her what she needs From You
The grieving process after a pregnancy loss is different for everyone.
If you’re not sure what to say or what to do or how to act around your friend, ask her.
Ask how you can be sensitive to her loss. She may not know the answer to that question. At least she’ll know you are thinking of her and respecting her feelings.
One day, she may seem totally fine discussing everything baby-related. Other days, it may be a lot more difficult.
Ask her if she’s okay with hearing about your pregnancy. Be honest. Tell her you don’t want to cause her more pain but don’t want to shut her out of your life either.
6. Be Cognizant of Where She Is in Building a Family In Comparison To You
Ordinarily, comparing yourself to others is never a good thing. However, when announcing your pregnancy to a friend who recently had a miscarriage, it’s important to keep in mind where she is in her pregnancy journey.
If your friend is struggling to conceive her first baby and you’re pregnant with your second, she may take the news harder. She may wonder why the universe is blessing you with multiple children and she isn’t able to have one.
After my first miscarriage, any pregnancy news had the potential to make me feel incredibly sad about my own situation. I especially felt that way when people announced they were pregnant with their first baby because that is what was taken away from us. I also had no idea if I could even have babies and the worry that I would never get to be pregnant again constantly ran through my mind.
Following my second miscarriage, I felt I could handle others’ pregnancies a little bit better. I had two children of my own so I knew I could get pregnant and I believed that I would be able to have another baby again. It was easy to feel happy for friends who were having their first babies. It was harder to hear someone was pregnant with their third child because that is what we had been hoping for.
Where you are in your journey of creating a family may affect how your friend reacts to the news that you are pregnant after her miscarriage.
7. Let her have space if she needs it
Even though she is most likely going to feel happy about your happiness, it may be very triggering to be around you and to see you pregnant. Looking at your cute baby bump when she was supposed to have one of her own could be too much to handle.
If she needs space, or pulls away, or turns down your invitation to hang out, don’t take offense. Try to understand that being reminded of what she lost is hard.
When she’s able to cope with the pain of her loss better, she’ll be there for you.
Final Thoughts On How To Tell a Friend Who Miscarried That You’re Pregnant
If you are telling a friend who has miscarried that you’re pregnant, try to be sensitive to how she might feel hearing your announcement. Hearing that you are having a baby after she lost hers, will probably feel very unfair to her.
Acknowledge the loss of her baby and how hard this must be for her. Tell her you don’t want to add to her pain. Ask her what she needs from you. Keep in touch with her, but let her have space if she needs it.
As human beings (especially women), we can experience many emotions all at once. She can be sad and grieving her own loss and even be angry at the universe for taking away her baby, but ALSO be incredibly happy for you.
I know it’s true because I’ve been there.
You’ll probably never feel like you’ll find the right way to tell someone you’re pregnant after they had a miscarriage. If you’re honest and open, along with all the other emotions she’s feeling, she will also feel how much you love and care for her.