Handling Hurtful Comments and Clichés After a Miscarriage

By Teske Drake
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Most people mean well, but it can still be difficult to make sense of some of the insensitive remarks women often hear in the aftermath of a miscarriage.

You may experience unwelcome and hurtful comments from those around you. It can be difficult to make sense of such remarks, which are usually well intended. Here are some specific examples to be aware of:

  • Be prepared for the “At least” comments which, by nature, tend to minimize the experience of loss.

    At least you were only ____ weeks along.

    At least you know you can get pregnant.

     At least you didn’t have to give birth.

     At least the pregnancy wasn’t planned

  • You can always try again.
  • This is just “nature’s way.” Something must have been wrong with the baby.
  • It was probably for the better.

Common clichés may also be expressed, many with Christian undertones. While it’s good to embrace truths from the Bible as you are ready and to realize that God sees the hurt you are going through in the aftermath of loss, hearing these phrases is not always helpful. Some common clichés that you may hear include:

  • Your baby is in a better place.
  • Heaven needed another angel.
  • This was all a part of God’s plan.

Decide in advance to forgive those who make insensitive remarks. Strive to look beyond the words that are spoken and examine the intent of the person making the comment. Consider your relationship to the individual and what you believe their true motives are behind their words. Doing so will help you respond with grace.

Be prepared for these comments and stand firm in the knowledge that your child’s life – no matter how brief, whether planned or unplanned – matters to both you and God.

Silence Hurts, Too

Sometimes the silence surrounding miscarriage stings more deeply than insensitive remarks. Silence sends the message that others don’t care, and can make you feel alone in your grief. The truth is that most people aren’t comfortable with the topic themselves and/or don’t want to cause more hurt by bringing it up.

You may be in a situation where you haven’t told anyone about the pregnancy, let alone the loss. As difficult as it may be, take the initiative to talk with someone about your experience and the current struggles you are facing. Seek out support so that you can share freely with others who’ve been through something similar.

Even when it may seem as though the rest of the world has moved on, remember that God is with you every step of the way. Turn to Him in prayer and find comfort in the refuge of His love. The Bible tells us, “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” (Psalm 34:18)

If you need further guidance and encouragement, Focus on the Family has a staff of licensed, professional Christian counselors available to talk with you at no charge. Just call 800-A-FAMILY (232-6459) 

© 2014 Teske Drake. Used with permission.

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About the Author

Teske Drake

Teske Drake co-founded and serves as President of Mommies with Hope, a biblically-based, non-profit support group ministry for women who have experienced miscarriage, stillbirth, or infant loss. Teske and her husband, Justin, reside in central Iowa; they have two children.

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