Pregnant After A Miscarriage
When a woman loses a pregnancy to miscarriage, her emotions may pull her in many different directions. She may feel fierce anger yet utterly powerless; she may feel guilt while at the same time feeling resentment. Inadequacy fights for equal rights with frustration, and anxiety vies for pride of place with hopelessness. Author Ann Douglas who co-wrote the book, Trying Again (Taylor Trade Publishing, 2000), says "Only you can assess your emotional readiness and decide when or if you're ready to risk heartache again for a shot at the ultimate prize: a healthy baby."
In addition to the mixed feelings a couple may have about trying again, they may need to deal with the classic emotional rollercoaster of infertility. Sometimes a couple will be affected by secondary infertility. This is the term used to indicate infertility that occurs after a couple has already had a baby or a miscarriage. Finding yourself with this type of fertility issue after going through a miscarriage can be a shocking surprise that seems to add insult to the injury of suffering a miscarriage.
Douglas says that healthy couples have a 20% chance of conceiving during each menstrual cycle. Unless a mother feels she has recovered her emotional equilibrium, she should wait and reassess in a cycle or too. Feeling the urgency of becoming pregnant is difficult, but having a baby when you're not yet finished dealing with the immediate crisis of the miscarriage is not a good idea.
"It's important to go into a subsequent pregnancy with your eyes wide open," says Douglas. A couple should consider that there may not be a positive outcome next time, either. You may become pregnant only to miscarry again. The time after conception with a subsequent pregnancy is liable to be fraught with worry. That's 40 weeks of anxiety to bear.
Of course, each subsequent pregnancy milestone that is passed gives the mother a measure of reassurance. For instance, entering the second trimester will seem like a victory of sorts. The first ultrasound will be another such milestone. Hearing that the baby is healthy at each test and exam can give the mother fresh hope and relief.
Perhaps the most important milestone of all arrives with the anniversary of the miscarriage. Some women will find it hard to bond with a baby that is born after a miscarriage until the date of the miscarriage has passed. A mother may be too frightened to commit her feelings after having had her previous baby snatched away from her. She is afraid to invest her emotions in the baby. But once the anniversary of the miscarriage has passed, a mother may feel that a chapter has closed. This can help her make room for optimism and love for her baby.