Christine Koh

Hello!

I'm Christine Koh, a music and brain neuroscientist turned multimedia creative. I'm the founder + editor of Boston Mamas, co-author of Minimalist Parenting, co-host of the Edit Your Life podcast, and creative director at Women Online. Drop me a line; I'd love to chat about how we can work together!

Moving Forward After Miscarriage

woman-alone.jpgToday, Jules shares an important lesson learned from her miscarriage. And resources to share with those in need:

October is National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month, and having miscarried just a few weeks ago, the month holds a very new meaning for me. I was ten weeks pregnant when I stared in a blurry eyed panic at that flat line on the screen...just one week earlier, I had seen that fantastically fast flicker of my baby's perfect heartbeat. I was crushed, and at my D&C the following day, the tears flowed heavily, particularly knowing that, ironically, it was the labor and delivery entrance that took us to the day surgery ward where the fetus -- and my high hopes -- would be removed.

My doctor was wonderful and my family incredibly supportive, but the pain remains so very palpable. Many, many woman who have suffered similar losses came forward in support of me, and I learned that too few (two to be exact) were referred to support services. As a licensed clinical social worker, I was shocked to not receive a referral or even a simple flyer for a support group or resources on managing grief. Everyone going through this type of loss needs to have emotional support offered to her. The hugs and condolences were thoughtful but the real help has been in knowing that I am not alone -- that many women have been through what I've been through, and that it is okay (helpful, even) to take the time to be sad and grieve the loss. Initially I felt silly grieving the loss of something I never had, but the support and refusal of my friends to allow me to isolate myself has shown me a real sense of the importance of camaraderie between women following a struggle with a miscarriage. So today I wanted to share some resources where you can find solidarity and give voice to your feelings if you are currently grieving or find yourself in this position at some point in the future.

  • My first recommendation is to ask for a social worker at your hospital. I still think this should be offered to patients but if it is not, ASK. There should be social workers on site to meet with you, follow up, and send you to outside resources.

  • Brigham and Women's Hospital Parent Support Group (Boston): For those who have lost infants as a result of miscarriage, stillbirth, and neonatal death. For information, call Susan Bermon 617-732-5419.

  • Newton-Wellesley Hospital Childbirth Loss Support Groups (Newton): Information, education, resources, and support for families who have suffered the death of a child before birth, at birth, or shortly after birth. For information, call 617-243-6221.

  • North Shore Medical Center Fetal/Newborn Loss (Salem): A bereavement support group for those who have experienced a fetal or newborn loss. For information, call 978-354-3357.

  • Beverly Hospital Infant Loss Support Group (Beverly): For information, call 978-236-1650.

  • RESOLVE Pregnancy Loss Support Group (Waltham): Support for individuals who have experienced miscarriage, stillbirth, ectopic pregnancy, recurrent pregnancy loss. For information, email admin@resolveofthebaystate.org.

  • The HOPE Group (Woburn): A pregnancy and infant loss support group. For information, contact Rindy Huebner at 781-273-2624 or by email. (HOPE Group also lists additional resources here.)

  • A Ripple in Time Pregnancy Loss Support Group (Billerica): A bereavement group for anyone experiencing loss from miscarriage, stillbirth, or neonatal death. For information, email Donna McDonnell or call 978-663-5477.

  • Share Pregnancy and Infant Loss Support: A national support organization for those whose lives are touched by the death of a baby through pregnancy loss, stillbirth, or in the first few months of life.

  • The Compassionate Friends: A national bereavement organization to support families following the death of a child. For information, call 877-969-0010.

  • One of my friends who has struggled a lot and remains incredibly resilient suggested I read the blog Clomid & Cabernet.

    Do you have other recommended resources for bereavement support? If so, please feel welcome to share in the comments below.

    Image credit: FreeDigitalPhotos.net


  • Feel Good Candy

    Weekly Blueprint