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What would you advise? Family stuff


RootAnn
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So, if one of your siblings came to you with this situation, what would you advise?

  Requesting sibling just found out this week that their baby had died in utero (11 weeks). They had not told (most) family about the pregnancy yet. They have elected to see if it will miscarry on its own and reportedly, there is some bleeding/cramping, although it is minor.

 

  There is a large family gathering on Saturday that they have already said they will attend. As long as the miscarriage isn't too far along, they were still planning on going.

 

  Enter The Situation.

 

  Another sibling RSVP'd through an e-vite site that "all 4 1/2 of us" will be coming - which indicates they are pregnant again, we assume. This is the first any of us have heard of this. Requesting sibling is now not sure about going since the feelings are very raw about losing their baby and they aren't close enough to the extended family who will all be there to share their pregnancy & loss. Thus, there will be no sparing of feelings for this sibling's family when discussing the new pregnancy of other sibling. They are siblings, so will be expected to share joy.

 

  I thought requesting sibling should share with newly pregnant sibling privately the loss & why their family won't be all happy-go-lucky. I've also thought of just suggesting they stay home since 1) they won't be in any mood to be festive and 2) she shouldn't be too far from home/hospital in case of complications with the miscarriage. However, there will be lots of questions about them being absent since they've already said they will go.

 

  What would you advise my sib?

 

Update:  My sib & family made the choice to attend & also chose not to tell anyone (including pregnant couple) anything. Thanks to everyone for their opinions & condolences.

Update #2: Just in case anyone finds this later & wonders. Almost two weeks to the day from finding out the baby had died, she miscarried. Like many of you noted, it was nothing to crazy in less than an hour. She ended up at the hospital due to blood loss & they did a d&c to finish it up.

Edited by RootAnn
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If your sibling and spouse don't want to tell others about the miscarriage, they can cancel stating that they aren't feeling well.  Most people will assume the flu and be glad the sibling decided not share it.

 

IMHO expecting the sibling to be happy for someone else's pregnancy is a bit much to ask so soon after a miscarriage.  

 

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I would stay home and say I'm sick. I would also ask you to tell the sibling who is newly expecting to break the news to them for me. Unless I'm ready to tell everyone, I would stay home, because I would be a mess for the whole thing anyway, and those not close enough to tell would know something was up when my DH and I spent the whole time bawling in a bedroom.

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So, let me get this right....

 

You would rather have this family celebration without one of the siblings simply because she's in the middle of a miscarriage and isn't happy-happy?

 

Yes, I can understand that this is a happy family event, but I would want the family member there for the hopeful moments of happy that she _can_ have. I would want her to be there.

 

Kris

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Sorry for the loss. First of all, I believe the mother should discuss with her OB-GYN, what to do and not to assume that at that stage there will be a Miscarriage that she can "handle" by herself. She may need an OB-GYN to help her with this.  That takes care of the physical part.     The emotional part is much harder.

 

I think it might be extremely traumatic for her to be at a family gathering with someone else, who is happily carrying her baby at this time.  That's the psychological part of this.

 

The physical part is easier to deal with and again I strongly suggest that she contact her OB-GYN, ASAP.  I realize that this is Thanksgiving Day in the USA, but she should call him/her and leave a message with the answering service or voice mail.  I'm not sure if they can just do a "D&C" or if it will require more than that.

 

Bottom Line: This is always traumatic, especially for the mother. 

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She should do what she wants.

 

The first few years I struggled with infertility and miscarriage, what I wanted was to put on a game face and soldier on and do my best.  And then I got to a certain point where I realized I was projecting how important it was that I go to events when I didn't feel like going, and that I act happy on others' behalf when actually I was devastated.  At that point, I stopped going when I felt too devastated to go -- I just gave my regrets and said, truthfully if incompletely, that I didn't feel well.  And, guess what, turned out my presence was not quite as essential as I'd somehow imagined, folks managed to get along fine without me.

 

She should discuss what she's going through with whomever she wants, no more, no less.

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I'd encourage them to consider the option of skipping the event. It's flu season. Lots of people 'don't feel well' and don't show up to events they had previously intended to attend. There won't be a ton of questions. That's not really a probable response to casual regrets due to illness.

 

If they prefer to come, I'd encourage them to mention both the facts and the privacy to the pregnant parents ahead of the event -- and I'd also offer to do so on their behalf, since talking can be hard even if the info should be shared.

 

In this case, the miscarrying parents should come prepared to 'fake it' a little (plan out what to say), ignore it a little (with your help -- distract them), and excuse themselves with a plausible fake or semi-fake reason if it becomes sensible for them to go (either home or to a hospital).

 

The bystanders probably won't be tuned in enough to notice any ways in which their reactions don't seem quite right. As long as the pregnant couple knows the issues in play, things should seem normal. The pregnant couple should not need to downplay their joy or their announcement. It's enough if they just know not to take the miscarrying couple's reactions personally.

 

I totally support the miscarrying couple in keeping the level of privacy they are comfortable with at this deeply painful time -- but in the abstract, I think our society encourages too much secrecy around pregnancy loss. I get why we do it, but I think we would be a healthier society if we didn't feel we needed to do it. If they are at all inclined to just be open about their loss, I think that would be a good option too.

Edited by bolt.
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As someone who's been in this situation, I think they should stay home. If she's in the middle of a miscarriage while also having to hear all the happy conversations about another pregnancy, it is extremely unlikely to be an enjoyable time. I know some people are private about miscarriages, but I personally think it's healthier to have them acknowledged. Maybe she'll allow you to explain to the family why they couldn't attend.

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I think you were right to give her a heads up about the other pregnancy.  In the end it will be her choice about whther she wants to come and not tell, come and tell, or just stay home.  I'd tell her you won't be offended/put out no matter what she decides she'd prefer.  If she decides not to go she can just say she has a nasty bug, no one will think anything of it.

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So, let me get this right....

 

You would rather have this family celebration without one of the siblings simply because she's in the middle of a miscarriage and isn't happy-happy?

 

Yes, I can understand that this is a happy family event, but I would want the family member there for the hopeful moments of happy that she _can_ have. I would want her to be there.

 

Kris

I don't think you've got that right at all.

 

The issue is that the miscarrying couple does not *want* to disclose their condition or their sorrow to this group of extended family. Therefore their behaviour will seem "off" in a joyful context and may be hurtful -- and that's in addition to the real pain of seeing others in the bliss you just lost, and the difficulty of all the faking.

 

I don't think anyone is suggesting that the miscarrying couple is unwelcome, or that their sorrow (if it was open and understood) would be inappropriate if they wanted to do it that way.

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She needs to be at home. Miscarriages can get pretty intense. All that needs to be said is, "We've come down with a bug at our house." As someone who has had a miscarriage, I can honestly say that one minute you can be pretty okay, and the next minute be in intense pain, gushing blood, a weeping mess in the bathroom. It is awful when this happens at someone else's house. If it gets really bad, you can end up in the ER getting a blood transfusion. So it is really important to be home to take care of yourself, and her hubby needs to be with her to provide care and support.

 

 

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She should do whatever she wants. I wouldn't encourage her to stay home if being around family would be helpful to her. I wouldn't worry at all about how anyone else would react. She shouldn't stay home for that reason, but if she wants to be home, stay home. I did not physically feel well during/after mine, nor would I have coped well in a loud, crowded gathering. I hope she does talk to the other sibling and explain. :grouphug: to your sibling.

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Bottom Line: This is always traumatic, especially for the mother. 

 

As someone who has miscarried multiple times, this is not always traumatic. Sometimes, it's just sad. It can be slow and relatively pain-free (not unlike a period), and sometimes it can be quick and painful (not unlike a delivery). Each miscarriage, as well as each woman, is different.

 

She should do what she wants.

 

 

 

This. Tell her that you will support her in whatever *her* decision is, and then stand by her. No more, no less.

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An 10-11 week miscarriage can be intense. I would beg off with "we're not feeling well" and stay home. I would want to protect my grief because if things happen suddenly (and they did, ime), I wouldn't want to be hanging out on the toilet while nieces/nephews/granny/my dad is banging on the door wanting to know what is going on.

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So, let me get this right....

 

You would rather have this family celebration without one of the siblings simply because she's in the middle of a miscarriage and isn't happy-happy?

 

Yes, I can understand that this is a happy family event, but I would want the family member there for the hopeful moments of happy that she _can_ have. I would want her to be there.

 

Kris

And this is why secrecy never works IMO. If the expecting sibling had already announced the pregnancy and then the miscarriage.....then everyone could be there for her and her Dh.

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And this is why secrecy never works IMO. If the expecting sibling had already announced the pregnancy and then the miscarriage.....then everyone could be there for her and her Dh.

She might be an intensely private person and not WANT everyone to be there for her in a public sort of way. When my brother and SIL lost their baby (36 weeks), I felt that one of the hardest parts had to be doing their grieving in front of everyone, at the memorial service, with all their family and friends around, etc. Now, THEY might have felt comforted by all those people physically there to support them; I, otoh, would have wanted to be at home, by myself (well, with my DH). Neither is wrong, just different.

 

OP, I think the couple going through the m/c should feel okay to stay home if they desire. They can say they aren't feeling well if they don't want to get into it. If they don't want to talk and would prefer not to have everyone inquiring about them, would they be okay if you quietly spread the word and acted as a buffer for them? There's no reason they should be expected to show up and feign happiness for the other sibling, not at this point. I'm assuming there's a reason they have confided in you; I'm the oldest of four, and I get to wear the big sister t shirt reasonably regularly. Any one of my siblings might confide in me and have me buffer things for them (and I'd turn to our mom myself). If there is a way to explain to the joyfully expecting couple what has happened, that would probably prevent or lessen hard feelings.

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And this is why secrecy never works IMO. If the expecting sibling had already announced the pregnancy and then the miscarriage.....then everyone could be there for her and her Dh.

(Very gently as I think you have valid thoughts): Secrecy can be difficult, but some couples are very private and may not even share personal things with anyone at all outside their marriage. We are all different. Sometimes people would hate having people "be there", and may not want to talk, pick up a phone, or even leave the house. We all grieve differently.

 

I personally would advise her to stay home unless she's had a m/c before and knows what it's like. Sometimes you think it will be okay but don't realize you're not really ok at all. Otherwise I'd truly encourage her to do what she feels comfortable with, staying home d/t medical reasons, or whatever. (Hugs) to the family.

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If I were the pregnant sibling I would want to know that my sister was miscarrying and I would save my announcement for another day. There will be time to rejoice over the baby, now is time to support the family experiencing loss.

Yep. Me too. Imagine how horrible the newly expecting sibling will feel when she learns her sibling was going through a miscarriage this weekend.

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(Very gently as I think you have valid thoughts): Secrecy can be difficult, but some couples are very private and may not even share personal things with anyone at all outside their marriage. We are all different. Sometimes people would hate having people "be there", and may not want to talk, pick up a phone, or even leave the house. We all grieve differently.

 

I personally would advise her to stay home unless she's had a m/c before and knows what it's like. Sometimes you think it will be okay but don't realize you're not really ok at all. Otherwise I'd truly encourage her to do what she feels comfortable with, staying home d/t medical reasons, or whatever. (Hugs) to the family.

Yes...I realize people see it differently than me. But in my opinion this 'private' type of handling things like a human being being conceived and or dying is strange and makes for strained relationships with others outside the little private circle.

 

I am not suggesting she be forced to go be with family while she miscarriages. If she wants to go through it alone with her husband,...,sure. But why not just tell people that? Congrats on the baby you are expecting. Unfortunately we are in the middle of a miscarriage and we want to be alone.

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If I were the pregnant sibling I would want to know that my sister was miscarrying and I would save my announcement for another day. There will be time to rejoice over the baby, now is time to support the family experiencing loss.

Gently...this isn't about the expecting sibling. The sibling who has miscarried needs time to process (grieve) their loss in the way that is right for them. If that means keeping the news to themselves (for now, for a week, forever, whatever), so be it.

 

No one has the right to information about a woman's uterus except that woman and anyone she chooses to share it with.

 

As for the OP, I am sorry for the sibling's loss. She should feel free to attend or not attend as she wishes. As others have said, staying home with the "I don't feel well" excuse is just fine. 

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Gently...this isn't about the expecting sibling. The sibling who has miscarried needs time to process (grieve) their loss in the way that is right for them. If that means keeping the news to themselves (for now, for a week, forever, whatever), so be it.

 

No one has the right to information about a woman's uterus except that woman and anyone she chooses to share it with.

 

As for the OP, I am sorry for the sibling's loss. She should feel free to attend or not attend as she wishes. As others have said, staying home with the "I don't feel well" excuse is just fine.

As I said....I understand there are people who feel that way. It is not a universally held view.

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I'd recommend the miscarrying sibling stay home from the event and I'd also make every possible effort to make them a plate of their favorite tasty treats and drive over there, deliver the food, give them an enormous hug and let them know you love them and are thankful they are in your life . . . even in the really rough days.

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Thanks to everyone for their thoughts & opinions. Obviously, requesting sib will do what their family feels is best tomorrow. I would assume that there are lots of hormones & emotions swirling and I was an "objective 3rd party" to get some advice from.

 

Intensely private is how I would characterize most of my family, but "secretive" could also fit. I thought about how to say this & the nicest way I can think of is to say that my family is made up of a lot of self-centered busibodies. (My mom is toxic and a horrible grandmother.) People are usually very polite and happy to your face, but there is a lot of back-biting and talking behind one another's back. I know the talk has already started about the new pregnancy. (For the record, it is sib's SO who is pregnant.)

 

If they don't go on Saturday, chances are that the rest of the family will never know about the pregnancy & miscarriage. I went to one sib's wedding years ago knowing that I had a d&c scheduled the following week for my own missed miscarriage. I "faked it" and only one sibling knows I had that miscarriage and she (not the sib who got married) doesn't know it was over that weekend.

 

I'll let y'all know Sunday what happened. Appreciate the myriad of advice!

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I've never had a miscarriage but a close friend's daughter decided to let nature take its course when they lost their baby.  She was alone when it happened. It was very emotionally traumatic. Not to be gross but there are certain things you have to show to the doctor to prove that the miscarriage was completed because otherwise you can have real complications. It made me cry to just think about it. They did an ultrasound to confirm everything was gone, and thought it was, but she continued to bleed for four more weeks, after which she had a D&C.  All this to say--my eyes were opened by this story--the emotional trauma wrought by the miscarriage and then the bleeding--I would not want to be alone dealing with that. As hard as it would be to tell a family member who was expecting I was going through that, it would be harder to try to put on a happy face for them when I was going through that dark place.  I hope she considers telling a few safe people who can come alongside her regardless.

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My first 3 pregnancies ended in miscarriage in the first trimesters.

She should NOT announce a miscarriage if she's inclined to do so.  People say remarkably stupid, cruel thoughtless things to women in that situation believing they're being helpful and supportive and others aren't even trying to be nice..  Private people are under ABSOLUTELY NO obligation to share with anyone at any time their miscarriage. Everyone is an individual to who processes losing a baby differently and it's outrageous to suggest someone not maintain privacy is that's what they're inclined to do.  It's not secrecy, it's privacy and it's NO ONE ELSE'S business how, when or where someone else does that.

 

The latest bandwagoning where everyone is supposed to announce all about their miscarriage before, during and after is as mindless as the never speak of it policy. I hate it when women are so thoughtless as to assume every woman is the same and actually goes so far as to decide what other women should be doing under such incredibly difficult circumstances.  It needs to stop NOW. Get off the bandwagon and tell woman they're perfectly capable of deciding how to handle the situation however they see fit and that you'll gladly support whatever they decide to do.  Sheesh!  I hate it when women sabotage each other to be part of the latest freaking trend.

I've had the full range of physical miscarriage-moderate labor for a day and major hemmoraging that required a hospital stay (Yep, even in the first trimester) and minor cramping for an afternoon with mild bleeding.  Where would you want to be if either of those things happened to you? At your relative's house? No.

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So, let me get this right....

 

You would rather have this family celebration without one of the siblings simply because she's in the middle of a miscarriage and isn't happy-happy?

 

Yes, I can understand that this is a happy family event, but I would want the family member there for the hopeful moments of happy that she _can_ have. I would want her to be there.

 

Kris

 

I concur...... but would add that the sibling experiencing the miscarriage should be the one who decides what she wants to do. And if she goes, others need to be understanding if she needs to leave early.

 

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Thanks to everyone for their thoughts & opinions. Obviously, requesting sib will do what their family feels is best tomorrow. I would assume that there are lots of hormones & emotions swirling and I was an "objective 3rd party" to get some advice from.

 

Intensely private is how I would characterize most of my family, but "secretive" could also fit. I thought about how to say this & the nicest way I can think of is to say that my family is made up of a lot of self-centered busibodies. (My mom is toxic and a horrible grandmother.) People are usually very polite and happy to your face, but there is a lot of back-biting and talking behind one another's back. I know the talk has already started about the new pregnancy. (For the record, it is sib's SO who is pregnant.)

 

If they don't go on Saturday, chances are that the rest of the family will never know about the pregnancy & miscarriage. I went to one sib's wedding years ago knowing that I had a d&c scheduled the following week for my own missed miscarriage. I "faked it" and only one sibling knows I had that miscarriage and she (not the sib who got married) doesn't know it was over that weekend.

 

I'll let y'all know Sunday what happened. Appreciate the myriad of advice!

 

Good gravy! They should not go and never look back. Have a small gathering with the non-crazy folk.

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Since she currently still waiting to miscarry and can experience heavy bleeding related to that at any time I would not go. If I was going through that I would personally not be able to attend especially before the baby even passed and you are waiting. It is hard to be joyful in that situation. She should tell the members she can trust but it sounds like there are toxic members so I can see why she is hesitant to say anything.

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So, if one of your siblings came to you with this situation, what would you advise?

  Requesting sibling just found out this week that their baby had died in utero (11 weeks). They had not told (most) family about the pregnancy yet. They have elected to see if it will miscarry on its own and reportedly, there is some bleeding/cramping, although it is minor.

 

  There is a large family gathering on Saturday that they have already said they will attend. As long as the miscarriage isn't too far along, they were still planning on going.

 

  Enter The Situation.

 

  Another sibling RSVP'd through an e-vite site that "all 4 1/2 of us" will be coming - which indicates they are pregnant again, we assume. This is the first any of us have heard of this. Requesting sibling is now not sure about going since the feelings are very raw about losing their baby and they aren't close enough to the extended family who will all be there to share their pregnancy & loss. Thus, there will be no sparing of feelings for this sibling's family when discussing the new pregnancy of other sibling. They are siblings, so will be expected to share joy.

 

  I thought requesting sibling should share with newly pregnant sibling privately the loss & why their family won't be all happy-go-lucky. I've also thought of just suggesting they stay home since 1) they won't be in any mood to be festive and 2) she shouldn't be too far from home/hospital in case of complications with the miscarriage. However, there will be lots of questions about them being absent since they've already said they will go.

 

  What would you advise my sib?

You should not advise your sibling at all. It is not your place to decide what someone should do with regards to a loss, or how they should grieve or handle it. You should let it go and let the family that is losing their child make all their own decisions without any suggestions from others on how to handle it. And I am dead serious on this. No one losing a child wants anyone else, nor should they have to deal with anyone else, telling them how to grieve, how to tell others, etc etc etc. Be sympathetic. Don't tell anyone about their loss, not your place to do so. This is their family, they trusted you with something private. Be trustworthy and give them the proper respect. 

 

And I feel very very very strongly about my advice to you.

Edited by Janeway
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I had a miscarriage. I do not consider myself intensely private , just your standard introvert. No way , no way, no way would I want to discuss my reproductive health and my sadness with my in laws during that time to be chalked up in the family lore. Nope no pass uh-uh. It might come up in conversation in a few years.

 

They should feel free to handle this loss however they wish. Just as atone grieving should be given a wide berth .

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My first 3 pregnancies ended in miscarriage in the first trimesters.

 

She should NOT announce a miscarriage if she's inclined to do so. People say remarkably stupid, cruel thoughtless things to women in that situation believing they're being helpful and supportive and others aren't even trying to be nice.. Private people are under ABSOLUTELY NO obligation to share with anyone at any time their miscarriage. Everyone is an individual to who processes losing a baby differently and it's outrageous to suggest someone not maintain privacy is that's what they're inclined to do. It's not secrecy, it's privacy and it's NO ONE ELSE'S business how, when or where someone else does that.

 

The latest bandwagoning where everyone is supposed to announce all about their miscarriage before, during and after is as mindless as the never speak of it policy. I hate it when women are so thoughtless as to assume every woman is the same and actually goes so far as to decide what other women should be doing under such incredibly difficult circumstances. It needs to stop NOW. Get off the bandwagon and tell woman they're perfectly capable of deciding how to handle the situation however they see fit and that you'll gladly support whatever they decide to do. Sheesh! I hate it when women sabotage each other to be part of the latest freaking trend.

 

I've had the full range of physical miscarriage-moderate labor for a day and major hemmoraging that required a hospital stay (Yep, even in the first trimester) and minor cramping for an afternoon with mild bleeding. Where would you want to be if either of those things happened to you? At your relative's house? No.

Wow. Could you tell us how you really feel? 😉

 

Yes people have a right to privacy. Surely there can be a balance found between never speak of it and tell every detail.

 

I think sometimes the secrecy/ privacy comes as a result of an already overbearing and critical family-- as indicated by the OP. When people begin establishing healthy boundaries....I think they sometimes go overboard.

 

And that is just my opinion. I tell a lot. But I have healthy relationships with the people in my life.....people who treat me well. And the ones who don't treat me well....I have tools to tell them to back away when I need that.

 

Op I am sorry for your sisters loss.

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You should not advise your sibling at all. It is not your place to decide what someone should do with regards to a loss, or how they should grieve or handle it. You should let it go and let the family that is losing their child make all their own decisions without any suggestions from others on how to handle it. And I am dead serious on this. No one losing a child wants anyone else, nor should they have to deal with anyone else, telling them how to grieve, how to tell others, etc etc etc. Be sympathetic. Don't tell anyone about their loss, not your place to do so. This is their family, they trusted you with something private. Be trustworthy and give them the proper respect. 

 

And I feel very very very strongly about my advice to you.

Maybe I am misunderstanding your post but I must admit I am confused.  The person ASKED OP for advice.  OP wasn't just volunteering random advice for fun or telling her how to grieve.  She was asked as a neutral 3rd party to help think through what to do about a complicated upcoming family event while the sibling deals with an ongoing miscarriage.  As OP said in a later post the person asking advice is going through a lot right now and wanted to talk this through with someone she thought could help her think about how to handle things (especially since some family members are toxic and could make the situation worse).

 

OP isn't some pushy sibling forcing her own unwanted opinions on another sibling.  The sibling asked for advice.  She reached out for help.  

Edited by OneStepAtATime
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And this is why secrecy never works IMO. If the expecting sibling had already announced the pregnancy and then the miscarriage.....then everyone could be there for her and her Dh.

Being a private person doesn't mean one is being secretive. I don't tell people in my circle that I am expecting until I am into the second trimester. I've had a lot of miscarriages over the years, more than a few around or past 11 weeks and that I don't choose to share that worry and pain with most people as I am experiencing it. I don't want most people to know because bluntly, a lot of people just don't know what to say or do. I can't take care of other people's feelings when I need to take care of myself. I have a few people I can tell and depend on their support. That doesn't include all or even most people.

 

It is way off the mark to catagorize this family as secretive and to assume that there would not be stress or a problem if they had told people sooner.

 

Some people get to announce their pregnancies publically as soon as they pee on the darn stick. Many of us however are just not that fortunate.

Edited by LucyStoner
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Wow. Could you tell us how you really feel? 😉

 

Yes people have a right to privacy. Surely there can be a balance found between never speak of it and tell every detail.

 

I think sometimes the secrecy/ privacy comes as a result of an already overbearing and critical family-- as indicated by the OP. When people begin establishing healthy boundaries....I think they sometimes go overboard.

 

And that is just my opinion. I tell a lot. But I have healthy relationships with the people in my life.....people who treat me well. And the ones who don't treat me well....I have tools to tell them to back away when I need that.

 

Op I am sorry for your sisters loss.

 

But you missed the point entirely when you made it about yourself and continue to do so.  That's the core of the problem. You were told multiple times in incredibly gentle terms how wrong you are to make what you would want the standard for other people's behavior.  You couldn't hear it, process it, and apply it, so I told you bluntly and directly in hopes that you will not oppress some poor woman in the future with your approach to this if you deal with it IRL.

 

Everyone is different.  There are people who will tell every little bit (not really, because based on the clueless responses here I can tell who has no idea about the cold, hard, grisly physical realities of the range of miscarriages,) there will be people who will speak of it to some degree AT SOME POINT, and there will be those who will not speak of it to anyone but their partner and doctor. If that's what they truly want to do, then they're right and suggesting anything else is dead wrong.  What you would personally do isn't relevant.  The only relevant information is what each individual woman in question truly wants to do and how she wants to be supported.  Your advice is bad and the OP clearly isn't headed in the right direction when she decided she an "objective 3rd party" is applicable int he situation.  It isn't. It's the entirely wrong way to look at it.

 

Maybe I am misunderstanding your post but I must admit I am confused.  The person ASKED OP for advice.  OP wasn't just volunteering random advice for fun or telling her how to grieve.  She was asked as a neutral 3rd party to help think through what to do about a complicated upcoming family event while the sibling deals with an ongoing miscarriage.  As OP said in a later post the person asking advice is going through a lot right now and wanted to talk this through with someone she thought could help her think about how to handle things (especially since some family members are toxic and could make the situation worse).

 

OP isn't some pushy sibling forcing her own unwanted opinions on another sibling.  The sibling asked for advice.  She reached out for help.  

It's time we stopped telling women that they don't get to decide or can't decide for themselves what they want just because they're sad and hormonal.  It's paternalistic and condescending.  People need to knock it off.  Why that poor woman believes she needs someone else to tell her how to handle this is just tragic. The respectful, kind, compassionate thing to do is reassure her that she's perfectly capable of listening to her gut and doing what she truly wants and that no one else's feelings need be considered in this situation because they're not grieving.  She's not a raging drunk signing a legal document for heave's sake!  She doesn't need someone else to be her parent, she needs a supportive friend who'll back her up whatever she decides. 

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The physical situation during the process can go from something manageable to very unmanageable so fast that she may not have time to handle it privately. If she is not past that point, then there's is a good chance that everyone in the room will witness the process. It can happen very quickly and is not pretty. I think I am ten years out now and "horrifying" is the most polite word I would use to describe the experience. If she hasn't been through this before, then there's no way she can image just how quickly it can go from one stage to the other.  Even at 10 weeks it isn't a process that can be managed privately when others are around (IMO).

 

So, then the question is, does she want to risk being around the people who will be present at the gathering if'/when the worst of it happens?   :grouphug: to her. She needs to focus on her needs exclusively right now. And, yes, her hormones are going to take her on a roller coaster ride from h311. 

 

 

 

 

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I have miscarried at 11 weeks. for me it went from just spotting to rapid bloodloss. It would not have been practical to be at a function at all. I ended up in hospital. I could not look at a pregnant woman or a small infant with out great sorrow for at least 6 months

Same experience at 12 weeks. We knew it was coming, it had been over a week since the ultrasound and I held out for a natural miscarriage. when it finally started it was very fast and scary (just stayed below the criteria for an er trip per doc on phone) and horrifically emotional. I was very thankful to be able to just cocoon at home with my little nuclear family once the hardest part was past.

 

I am sorry for your relative's loss. Miscarriage is such a hard thing.

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I just can't imagine wanting to socialize, pregnant relatives or no, during or immediately after a loss. I don't usually say anything but I like to cocoon and disappear for awhile and the pain in terms of social situations lasts a lot longer. Telling people makes me feel worse though - I'd rather just keep it entirely private and anyone I share it with is I tell the same - please no advocating on my behalf. Just shut up and let the celebrating person celebrate, let the grieving person grieve, and keep your peace.

 

I don't think it's really secretive so much as private. They really are different things. Grief and loss are intensely personal and I'd be encouraging the mom to take more time and not less, especially if she hasn't fully miscarried yet. It's just too dangerous to be out and about, all emotional trauma aside. That's the time to miss the event, no explanation needed, and watch a gazillion movies with junk food and cry. Or whatever coping mechanism works for her.

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It's time we stopped telling women that they don't get to decide or can't decide for themselves what they want just because they're sad and hormonal.  It's paternalistic and condescending.  People need to knock it off.  Why that poor woman believes she needs someone else to tell her how to handle this is just tragic. The respectful, kind, compassionate thing to do is reassure her that she's perfectly capable of listening to her gut and doing what she truly wants and that no one else's feelings need be considered in this situation because they're not grieving.  She's not a raging drunk signing a legal document for heave's sake!  She doesn't need someone else to be her parent, she needs a supportive friend who'll back her up whatever she decides. 

 

I guess you and I are seeing this situation differently.  I got the feeling that the sibling was not seeking a parent to make all the decisions for her but a sibling/confidant/friend that understands all the various people and situations involved that she could turn to as a comrade, someone she trusts to help her work through in her own mind what she truly wants and to help her to think through all the various parts and pieces.  Sometimes we really don't know our own minds, at least consciously, and it can be a gift to have someone we trust to turn to so we can discuss it all as we process.

 

Maybe you have never had that need but I certainly have.  Just last year I was in a crisis.  I turned to a few close friends for a private conversation about what to do because I knew they knew a lot about the situation.  I needed sounding boards.  I didn't need a parent to make the decision for me, but I did need a sounding board.  I did not take most of the advice given me but discussing those options with people I trust and who know a lot about my situation helped tremendously in getting me to the decision I needed/wanted to make.  It also helped me to deal with one of the elephants in the room that I had not yet been willing to see.  And it kept me from feeling alone without having to make a very private and painful situation public.

 

I could be dead wrong, though.  Maybe the sibling should not have sought council from a trusted family member.  Maybe OP really is "paternalistic and condescending" to do as the sibling requested and discuss this situation with her.  Maybe OP really is trying to turn into the parent and tell her what to do.  Maybe her sibling, in seeking out counsel from OP, made a colossal mistake and should be told to suck it up and deal with it on her own (politely of course).   I will be honest, if I reached out privately to a sibling to discuss my situation but was told to just listen to my gut, that she/he would not be discussing anything with me because they are not my parent, I would take it as rejection when I needed a friend.

 

Again, though, I think you and I are seeing very different nuances to this scenario and I have no idea which one is more accurate since I don't know either person in real life.

 

Either way, OP I wish your sibling all the best as she deals with a very difficult situation.  Hugs to her.

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 OneStepAtaTime said the following:

I will be honest, if I reached out privately to a sibling to discuss my situation but was told to just listen to my gut, that she/he would not be discussing anything with me because they are not my parent, I would take it as rejection when I needed a friend.

 

 

 

 

 

Quote feature is wonky today. Just wanted to agree with what OneStep said. I've never had a miscarriage, thankfully, and can only imagine the pain it brings. But I've faced serious health issues before that I didn't want to share with the world at large. If the person I turned to for support and an "ear" had reacted the way some other posters suggest, it absolutely would have been rejection when I needed help the most. Being a sounding board for someone, letting people talk the way they need to talk, offering counsel WHEN ASKED (as the OP was) is being supportive.

 

Telling the OP to stay out of it when her sibling specifically asked for cousel and input is, to me, almost as bad as someone sticking their nose into someone else's private grief without invitation. Because the grieving person gets to decide whom to tell and in what capacity she wants other people's involvement. If the OP were trying to dictate the situation, that would be different. But she's not. She's responding to a specific plea for help.

 

My deepest sympathy to all who have experienced the pain of miscarriage first-hand.

 

Edited to make it clear whom I was quoting.

 

Edited by Reluctant Homeschooler
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I have had a miscarriage and based on my own personal experience, I would advise the couple to keep things as private as they feel comfortable with now. No pressure to tell anyone at all. Obviously health professionals, but other than that it is private.

 

As for attending a large family gathering, I would not do it myself. If a d & c is needed, it's important to be close to the hospital and ready to go in immediately. It's not likely to be something you schedule days in advance; you go when the doctor tells you there is an opening for the OR. At least that is how it was for me.

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