On Valentine’s Day, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry announced they were having another baby. However, this joyful news may be tinged by sadness over Markle’s miscarriage in July of 2020.
While she had a miscarriage in July, the public didn’t find out about it until November. That was when The New York Times published an essay by Markle that delved into the trauma of the entire experience.
In that essay, Markle did not mince words. She described miscarriage as “an almost unbearable grief, experienced by many but talked about by few.” By going public with her own trauma and pain, she hoped to end the stigma and isolation associated with this particular trauma.
Now, however, many are concerned that another pregnancy may bring the old trauma back to life. Insider reported that some midwives have expressed particular concerns. Sophia King, a midwife who works for Tommy’s (a charity that helps research and prevent causes of pregnancy complications, miscarriages, and other issues), had a lot to say on the matter.
According to King, the celebration surrounding a new pregnancy may feel somewhat muted. “As we know they sadly lost a baby last year, this celebration may feel bittersweet, while their pregnancy journey stirs up heart-breaking memories and complex emotions.”
King points out that such bittersweet grief is a typical response because the parents in question can’t help but worry about a repeat incident. “Any expectant or new parent may struggle with anxiety, but it can be hard for those who have lost babies to believe that won’t happen again, or they may feel guilty for being excited about a new arrival while grieving a sibling.”
If Markle is going through these complex emotions, there may be a light at the end of the tunnel. King points out that the children born after a previous miscarriage are typically called “rainbow babies” in order to “symbolize hope and light after a dark time.” But the beauty and hope of the rainbow are not enough to “erase the storm that came before it.”
Obviously, we have no way of knowing exactly what Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are feeling during this time. But this is a good opportunity to remind ourselves there should be no stigma associated with miscarriage. And the best thing we can offer to those who experience this trauma is our unconditional love and support.