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Q&A: Grieving Miscarriage

Q. I had an unexpected miscarriage two days ago, and I can't stop crying. How do I grieve my loss?

A. No matter when you miscarry, it's never easy to accept that loss. A late miscarriage can be extremely difficult because you've grown attached to your child. Ask your health care provider to refer you to a therapist or a support group for people who have experienced miscarriage.

When a baby is miscarried before 24 weeks, there is no legal requirement to bury or cremate the baby, but some hospitals offer this service. You may decide to have a funeral for your baby, or you may prefer to grieve privately with your partner. Either way, it might help you grieve if you name your baby and gather mementos--such as an ultrasound photo, baby clothes, and photos taken of you during your pregnancy--and put them in a special box to look at from time to time. Some parents mark their loss by planting a tree or by making a donation to charity in their baby's name. After the initial shock, you will need time to grieve. Although the pain will decrease over time, you will always remember your baby.

Originally published in You & Your Baby: Pregnancy.

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