Many are arguing that you’re never safe from a miscarriage. That is true, but statistically, we do know that the odds are significantly lower. A loss in the second or third trimester is far more likely the result of an injury or illness to mother and/or baby, whereas a first trimester loss is more likely the result of a genetic condition or chromosomal abnormality.
There’s about a 10% miscarriage risk after seeing a heartbeat at 6 weeks (.5% at 9 weeks in the same situation). The odds of having a miscarriage beyond that are incredibly small, though certainly as this thread shows, it happens to an unfortunate number of women. Still, I feel this needs to be put out there to remind people that miscarriage is still not as common as we think.
But, let’s be honest here. If you put your pregnancy up at 6 weeks (or earlier), there’s a 1 in 10 chance you’ll have to discuss the loss later. If you put it up beyond 9 weeks (again, with a heartbeat), it’s less than a 1 in 200 chance. They are not the same, and I think that making the argument, “It can happen at any time,” has a degree of scaremongering to it. While it’s technically true, the odds are markedly higher even between those 3-week margins I just described (at least 10 times higher). Let alone even later in pregnancy.
I’d also like to clarify in my earlier post that I never said that someone who has posted about a pregnancy, only to have a loss later on, didn’t think it through. I did say that I hope they *have* thought it through, just as I hope that someone who is pregnant and chooses not to announce thinks through that decision if there is a loss (i.e., feeling isolated and alone with the grief). In the heat of the moment, when you are very excited about something, you are going to be more prone to making decisions without thinking them through. Taking a pause, thinking over the pros/cons and what makes you comfortable, is important.
While many people are very supportive and many people have been through a pregnancy loss, there are still significant portions who do not regard or think of a fetus the same way they think of a person outside the womb. You are far more likely to get the “It wasn’t your time,” “It was God’s will,” etc., type comments. The more flippant, “Just go and make another one.”
I do think it’s wonderful that so many who have suffered a loss report having a great support system to be there for them in this thread. Looking over the rest of the Weddingbee, though, we know this isn’t always so, and some may be worse off having to share that news.
No one should be ashamed of a miscarriage — it is a terrible, sad, unfortunate event. My feelings on how to handle them, or the strong possibility of them earlier on, is to look at how certain approaches might affect the person grieving. My recommendation to wait until later on is not because I feel women should grieve and hide in silence.
I can only speak for myself and what I would find comfortable, but I think they’re also points everyone should think about when weighing the pros/cons of announcing early. My thought process is — will the mother-to-be be better off announcing the pregnancy early, then having to explain later? Or, will she be better off choosing to — or not choosing to — talk about the miscarriage with others when it has happened?
I think there’s a false dichotomy in this thread going…i.e., the idea that the recommendation not to announce early is solely because mothers should be ashamed and suffer quietly if they have a miscarriage, which is then forevermore buried and never mentioned again. It’s not one or the other — either you blab to everyone you know early on about the pregnancy, or you never discuss the pregnancy and subsequent miscarriage. There are many in-betweens.
In any case, I felt I should clarify. These are very emotionally charged threads (for obvious reasons), and rather than having knee-jerk responses, I want to do my best to give a clear picture of the pros/cons of the situation. Each person’s life is different. The circumstances, health conditions of themselves and their baby, etc., are always going to be different.
I also wanted to thank all of those who have shared their pregnancy loss experiences here. I’m very sorry for what all of you have endured. Your stories give more color to this debate and can show all of the upsides and downsides of each choice when it comes to announcing a pregnancy.