This Woman Is Encouraging Others To Share Their Stories Of Miscarriage
By Korin Miller, photography courtesy of Instagram
“I try to write about things that I know other women can feel but they can’t express.”
You’ve probably heard at some point that miscarriages are common, and you may have even suffered one yourself. But for some reason, the topic is largely considered taboo. Now, one woman is hoping to change that.
is a Los Angeles-based psychologist specializing in women’s reproductive and maternal mental health. She’s also the founder of the hashtag #IHadAMiscarriage and the popular account of the same name, which she launched in 2015. On Instagram, Zucker posts intimate stories from women who have been through a miscarriage, encouraging words about moving past grief, fears about pregnancy after miscarriage, and myth-busters. The account is all at once inspirational, tear-jerking, and educational.
The stories are hard to read. “One year ago today, admiring my changing body, my growing son,” one woman shared next to a photo of herself cradling a baby bump. “What I wouldn’t give to feel Jude’s movements again….What I wouldn’t give to have him here in my arms. Nothing more beautiful than a mother and the love for her child.”
“She was my little jellyfish – squishy, soft against the ocean of my insides. And then, she was spilling out of me in clots and blood,” another wrote. “Healing is brutal, complicated and unfinished. I am still learning how to confront and cherish the great painful love I had for her and in that, I believe I will be a lifelong learner with my little jellyfish as my teacher.”
And, unfortunately, Zucker also has her own story to share.
In 2012, Zucker was 16 weeks pregnant when she noticed during a trip to the bathroom that she was spotting. She went to her ob-gyn’s office and, since everything looked fine, she was sent home. But she started to have cramps and contractions on her way home from work the next day, and the following day she suffered a miscarriage in her bathroom at home. “The baby fell out,” she recalls. “I was home alone—my son was at school and my husband was at work.” Zucker called her ob-gyn, who coached her through what to do next, including cutting the umbilical cord. She also started haemorrhaging “extensively” because the placenta was still inside her and had to go to her doctor’s office for an unmedicated dilation and curettage, a procedure in which doctors clear the uterine lining after a miscarriage. Typically, women are offered anaesthesia for the procedure, but Zucker was bleeding so heavily that she would need a blood transfusion if she waited for the anaesthesiologist to arrive.
“It changed my life in all ways,” Zucker says. “I don’t know how it couldn’t.” A few month later, she became pregnant with her daughter, who is now 3 years old, and says she was “terrified” throughout her pregnancy that something would go wrong. Once her daughter was born, she began writing essays about her experience and eventually launched her social media miscarriage awareness campaign.
Zucker says she started the campaign due to her clinical background and personal experience, but also because there is overwhelming research that shows the majority of women experience shame, self-blame, and guilt after a pregnancy loss. “I’m outraged that women are feeling that their bodies failed them, or they may have deserved this or done something wrong,” Zucker says. “That inspired me to do the campaign and in particularly the Instagram account.” Zucker says she’s “dead-set” on changing the stigma surrounding miscarriage and is hopeful that her account can help others.
“I hope that women can come to the account and peruse and feel less alone,” she says. “If they are inclined to share, this is a space they can share.” Zucker says she also tries to be a voice for others. “I try to write about things that I know other women can feel but they can’t express,” she says.
She’s built up quite a following in the process: Zucker’s Instagram account has 13,900 followers, and it’s making an impact. Women frequently share their stories of miscarriage in the comments and offer support to each other—and hopefully, they feel less alone in the process.
“Miscarriage does not discriminate,” Zucker says. “This is happening everywhere. What’s not natural is the fact that our culture won’t embrace the grieving process.”
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