Trigger Warning: Pregnancy Loss
A few months ago, we spoke with two women who had suffered miscarriages about their experiences. This time, we spoke with three men whose wives had suffered miscarriages about how it affected them.
This is what they had to say:
Before my wife had her two miscarriages about 15 years ago, we already had a child. I wasn’t overly sad when it happened. I understood that it was a reality of life and that we could have another child if we tried again, but I was extremely concerned about my wife’s physical and mental wellbeing.
My wife’s body hated stress, but she couldn’t go for long periods of time without working. She hated being idle. When she got pregnant with the first baby we lost, she decided that she didn’t want to sit at home doing nothing. She wanted to be active. So we started a side business that would have her travel between Lagos and Ogun a lot.
The two miscarriages happened on those journeys. I wasn’t there the first time, but I witnessed the second one and that’s when I decided that she had to stop doing any work when she was pregnant. It was hard, but on our third try, we had another child.
As a man, when your wife has a miscarriage, you’re grieving, but you also have to be there for her so she doesn’t slip into a deep dark depression.
My wife’s first miscarriage happened when she was four months pregnant with the child that was meant to be our third. I felt bad that we’d lost a baby, but I wasn’t too worried because we already had two children. I was also really hurt that she had to go through the pain of having an excavation done. The next few months were hard for us. Her sorrow leaked out to me. She became very touchy and emotional. She’d get angry at our kids for the littlest things and shout at them when they were just being kids. Even they were confused because they didn’t understand why she was crying a lot. She’d randomly get angry at me and throw a fit because I was not sorrowful enough. I did all the cooking and cleaning and taking care of the kids for those few months while trying my best to help her feel better in every way I could. Balancing it all wasn’t great for my own emotions and mental health but I knew it was what I had to do. I had to allow her grieve the way she wanted to.
The second miscarriage was worse. She was eight months pregnant. I was scared and worried about her life. Once again, about the miscarriage, I was sad, but I knew we could still have another child. The only thing on my mind was my wife’s life, because she had to push the child out. The only other option was a C-section, and we didn’t want that.
My lowest point was the hospital giving me the baby’s body to bury. I broke down and cried like a baby. I didn’t return to my wife at the hospital until I’d stopped praying and crying.
The month after was terrible. She was angry at God. This time, things were much worse. She totally disconnected from everything. She didn’t leave the room for months. She cried a lot and that made me cry.
At some point, we had a huge fight because I told her she had to move on and face reality, and that she’d grieved enough. The children we had needed their mother; the one we lost was not coming back. I’d waited for a long time for her to come out of that dark hole and she wasn’t leaving anytime soon, so I had to do that. The fight was good for us because after that, she became much better.
From time to time, she’d break down and cry again, but it got less frequent as time passed, and she became totally fine when we had our third child.
When we lost our first baby, I had to become a comforter and a doctor. We hadn’t had any children yet, so she went into a very depressed state. She felt like she wasn’t ever going to have children again.
Seeing your wife go through something like that brings out the part of you that fell in love with her in the first place. I had to be intentional about giving her words of affirmation and making sure she didn’t slip into a terrible place. I also had to be careful about the things I said because I could end up saying things that made her feel worse.
People told us to try again immediately but she was so depressed, we couldn’t even have sex for two months.
I tried taking her out as often as I could. We didn’t stay indoors for two days in a row. Sometimes, we went to the movies. Other times, we just went for a drive.
When she got pregnant again, she was scared every day until she had our first child. It was my job everyday to make sure she didn’t go through any stress. God was faithful, and we had our baby.
After our first child, she had a placenta abruption when we wanted to have our second child. It resulted in a still birth. She was in the US and the hospital staff that attended to her pumped her with painkillers when she complained about some discomfort. A few hours later, when she got back home, the miscarriage happened. My wife almost died. The hospital fired the nurse that caused the problem and tried to get us not to sue. It was an equally trying time for us.
A miscarriage will remind you how much you love your wife.
Editor’s Note: The names of the men in this article have been changed for anonymity.