What to say to someone after a miscarriage. Aussie woman sparks important conversation ahead of Mother’s Day

When Melissa King lost her baby through miscarriage, she knew she had to do something to help others heal from the heartbreak.

Melissa told me 7NEWS.com.au a lot of people, though well-intentioned, did not know what to say or how to help – and sometimes ended up saying the wrong thing.

“I felt people just didn’t understand how they should respond,” she said.

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“Some people who thought they were saying the right things and asking good questions were actually making comments that were quite upsetting.”

Melissa is now a proud mother of two. Credit: Supplied

Melissa realized she needed to do something to help the thousands of Australians and their families who are grieving each year.

One in 4 pregnancies ends in miscarriage – about 100,000 miscarriages every year – the latest Australian statistics reveal.

“I thought: We need a way to educate the community and get the information out there, so we can make a difference in the Healing journey,” she said.

Now a proud mother of two, Melissa is dedicating her life to spread awareness and help others in their grieving process.

How to talk to a loved one

Melissa says, although the conversation can be an extremely difficult one, making sure the person knows you are there to support them can make all the difference.

“We always try to encourage people to focus on the person when talking about a miscarriage,” she said.

“So, saying ‘I’m sorry’ and also offering them support and asking, ‘What can I do to help?’ can really go a long way. ”

File image: 1 in 4 pregnancies in Australia results in a miscarriage.
File image: 1 in 4 pregnancies in Australia results in a miscarriage. Credit: AAP

Melissa also recommended certain phrases to try to avoid, including those that can take away from or minimize the grief.

“Unfortunately, a lot of people who haven’t been personally touched by a miscarriage or don’t quite understand the grief will lead with an‘ at least ’statement,” she said.

“So, they will say things like‘ At least you have another child ’or‘ At least you can try again ’.

“And we often see these types of statements to actually be quite harmful, even if the person saying it is well-meaning.”

Melissa also recommends remembering to check in with others who have been affected, including partners.

“Typically, of course, a lot of support is focused on the woman and their experience, and sometimes we forget that in fact the partner is also grieving,” she said.

Thousands of Aussies affected every year

This year May 1 is National Miscarriage Awareness Day, which falls on the Sunday before Mother’s Day each year.

The day, first launched by the Miscarriage Information Support Service (MISS) committee, aims to create a space for discussion for the 100,000 Australians who are affected every year.

“The day started in 2019 as a way to promote discussion around miscarriage because it is still one of those issues that is difficult to talk about,” Melissa said.

Care packages are donated to local hospitals.
Care packages are donated to local hospitals. Credit: MISS

The MISS website is a not-for-profit platform that hosts information and support services for those affected by miscarriage.

It also donates care packages to local Hospitals, providing more information as well as seedlings to plant in memory of a child.


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