Male Mourning and Miscarriage

Kristen Frescoe, MSc
November 6, 2019
Couple looking at ultrasound photos

When a couple experiences the tragedy of a miscarriage much attention is given to the feelings and emotions of the woman who lived through the physical experience. In many cases, the males in the relationship suffer a similar emotional tragedy, but little is done to support their emotional health.

In this article, we will look at the experience men often experience in the wake of a miscarriage and what can be done to help them through the experience.

How Common Are Miscarriages?

According to the Mayo Clinic, approximately 10-20 known pregnancies end in miscarriage. It is likely that numbers are actually higher because a large number of women may not realize they have experienced a miscarriage if it occurs early enough.

For those couples who know about their pregnancy and suffer a loss, it can be a tragic and traumatic experience. Because the cause is usually unknown, it can be a burden for both the man and the woman in the relationship.

What is the Male Experience After a Miscarriage?

Most discussions about miscarriages focus on the physical and emotional pain the woman experiences. But the reality is that men also undergo the process of mourning. Often men grieve both their own loss of a child as well as the loss they are watching their significant other experience.

Men often report that after a miscarriage they feel helpless in helping their spouse or significant other heal. They cannot fix the situation and there is little they can do to eliminate the pain of the person they love. Men will sometimes even minimize or ignore their own pain and focus solely on their loved one. 

How to Support a Man Dealing with Miscarriage Grief

If a man in your life is dealing with this kind of loss, the most important thing you can do is listen and offer support. Give them a space where they can talk about the way they feel and how the experience has impacted them. Don’t judge, offer unsolicited advice or talk too much. Instead, allow them a place to talk, vent and express how they feel.

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What to do if You are a Man Dealing with Miscarriage Grief

If you are dealing with the trauma of a miscarriage in your relationship, opening up is the key to healing. Ignoring your pain isn’t going to make it go away and it isn’t going to help your significant other.

Be open about how you are feeling. Mourning the loss of your child is something best done as a family unit. Talk to your loved one about how you feel. You might even find that in your grief they find solace in knowing they are not alone.

What Can You Do?

If someone you know is going through the experience of a miscarriage you can be a huge support to them. Be there to listen, offer your help and encourage them to acknowledge the way they are feeling.

If the painful experience is impacting you or someone you love in a significant way, it might be helpful to see a professional in order to help deal with the emotions and move forward. A miscarriage is a painful experience but it is something that couples can survive and learn to live with.

Kristen Frescoe, MSc

Kristen has a master’s degree in Clinical Psychology with a specialization in Forensic Psychology, she worked as a rape crisis counselor, inmate counselor. The research focus was on collecting data to assess the effectiveness of treatments for inmates living with PTSD. She founded a company specializing in Industrial & Organizational Psychology, applying clinical psychological practices in the business world. She is currently the Clinical Program Manager at Resility Health and Adjunct Professor of Psychology at Rowan College.

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