Losing a pregnancy can be incredibly heartbreaking, whether a miscarriage, stillbirth, or abortion. You’re often left to pick up the pieces by yourself, and the people around you might not realize just how much grief or sadness you’re experiencing – or how to offer condolences for miscarriage.
Jump ahead to these sections:
- What Should You Include or Not Include in a Pregnancy Announcement After a Loss?
- Steps for Announcing a Pregnancy After a Loss
- Examples of How to Announce a Pregnancy After a Loss
You might be feeling joy, relief, anxiety, worry, happiness, grief, or any combination of emotions. You’re also probably wondering just what to tell the people in your life. It might feel like you’re walking on eggshells, but we’re here to help you navigate through announcing pregnancy after loss.
What Should You Include or Not Include in a Pregnancy Announcement After a Loss?
Grief and healing have their own timelines. You might still be coping with a miscarriage when you get pregnant again. You might feel superstitious or just generally worried about announcing a pregnancy after a prior loss or feel at a loss for what to say. You might be thinking to yourself that pregnancy is exciting, and you want to share this with the world, but your prior loss is holding you back in some ways.
Some forms of holding back include not telling people at all until you're later on in your pregnancy, or only telling them general information, and not giving specific details like your estimated due date.
If you already had a baby shower for the pregnancy you experienced a loss with, you might want to tell your loved ones that you don't want or need gifts for this one. As it's your baby shower, this is entirely up to you!
It might be helpful for you to share that this pregnancy is a sensitive topic after your pregnancy loss, and you would appreciate it if your loved ones respected your space and privacy. Let them know that you will tell them more information when you're ready to do so.
Steps for Announcing a Pregnancy After a Loss
As heartbreaking as pregnancy loss can be, life does go on. Now that you have a new life growing inside you (or your partner), you may be wondering how to share that news with the world. Here are the steps for announcing a pregnancy after a loss.
Decide when is right for you
There’s a lot of superstition around announcing a pregnancy too early. Some people want to wait until they are less likely to have a miscarriage, which is about twelve weeks, or the end of the first trimester. This wariness comes from a fear of and lack of discussion around loss in our society, especially pregnancy loss. Loss happens, and it’s important to discuss; however, that doesn’t mean you should tell people before you’re ready.
With this said, it’s understandable if you do want to wait before announcing your pregnancy. Deciding when to announce your pregnancy is a hugely personal decision, and only you get to determine what timeline works best for you. You may want to wait longer, especially if you have had recurrent miscarriages or pregnancy loss.
It may also mean doing it in phases and only telling certain people first before you start to show.
Decide your mode of communication
Once you decide when to tell people about your pregnancy, you’ll want to figure out how. Pregnancy announcements can be a simple text message or a more grand reveal. You might feel timid about doing too much after your loss, but again – do what feels right for you.
Some ways people announce their pregnancy is by:
- Sending an Ecard.
- Making a social media post.
- Sending snail mail cards.
It might feel better for you to do this in phases. Phasing your pregnancy reveal could look like calling people close to you at first, then sending cards to a slightly wider circle of friends and family, and lastly announcing it on social media.
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Have fun with it
It might be hard to “have fun” with a pregnancy after a loss, and that’s ok. Try your best to enjoy the experience of telling people by making it as stress-free as possible. Have your announcement reflect your personality in a way that feels exciting – and fun!
How do you have fun with a pregnancy announcement? Here are some ideas:
- Hire a professional photographer or videographer.
- Send seed packets out to loved ones.
- Use your sense of humor.
- Send out personalized puzzles.
- Send baked goods to let them know about your “bun in the oven”.
Boundaries are always important in pregnancy, especially after a loss.
A lot of times, these boundaries aren’t on people’s radars. That’s why they touch pregnant people’s bellies without permission or ask questions that might not be appropriate or wanted. These are some reasons why it’s essential to know and set your boundaries.
You might do this within your pregnancy announcement or directly to people on a case-by-case basis. You’ll most likely need stricter boundaries with some people than with others.
Boundaries could mean:
- Telling people to not ask you whether you’ve had the baby or not yet.
- Asking them not to discuss your pregnancy loss.
- Saying you do not want to discuss details of your reproductive health.
These boundaries are for you to set to protect your wellbeing during pregnancy.
Examples of How to Announce a Pregnancy After a Loss
There are different kinds of pregnancy loss, and the tone of your pregnancy announcement might change depending on what type of loss you experienced. Here are some examples of how to announce a pregnancy after a loss, whether it was a miscarriage, stillbirth, or abortion.
After a miscarriage
A miscarriage is a pregnancy loss that occurs before twenty weeks of gestation.
Unfortunately, they’re more common than people think and are often a part of someone’s reproductive journey. You might have experienced a miscarriage fairly early in your pregnancy and never told others. Or maybe you have and are hesitant about telling them about your current pregnancy.
Here are some ideas of what to say:
- “Here We Grow Again!” - Humor is a healing force. Don’t be afraid to use it in your pregnancy announcement.
- “A Miracle Is On Its Way” - It might feel like a miracle to become pregnant after a miscarriage. Don’t be afraid to share that magic and joy.
People might navigate pregnancy announcements a little differently depending on when the pregnancy loss occurred, like in the case of a stillbirth.
After a stillbirth
A stillbirth is a pregnancy loss that occurs after twenty weeks of gestation.
You might still be in the midst of grief but find yourself pregnant again and wondering how to move forward. Your community wants to know and will support you whenever you choose to tell them.
Here are some ideas on how to do that:
- “Rainbow Baby on Board” - A ‘rainbow baby’ is a live birth after a stillbirth. This can be an incredibly touching message to share with your loved ones.
- “After The Storm Comes The Rainbow” - Life comes with its storms sometimes, but if you’re lucky – you’ll see a rainbow at the end of it.
- “Cooking Up Some Magic” - A riff on the classic “bun in the oven”.
You can personalize any of these to disclose more details and set boundaries within the card, or however you send this message. Miscarriage and stillbirth aren’t the only forms of pregnancy loss out there though.
After an abortion
Although they’re not often a part of the pregnancy loss conversation, abortion is undoubtedly a form of pregnancy loss.
Many people don’t realize that people get abortions for various reasons, from personal choice to medical reasons. Not all abortions are because of an “unwanted pregnancy.” No matter the reason for your abortion, you’re now pregnant again and are wondering how to share that news.
Here are some ideas:
- “Now it’s My Time” - You might not have been ready before, but now you are!
- “Life is Full of Surprises – I Have One For You!” - Let your people know just how big of a surprise you have in store for them.
- “Oh Baby! Coming *Insert date here*” - This one gets straight to the point.
Announcing Your Pregnancy After a Loss
Life can be so full of contradictions.
Pregnancy after a loss can make you feel this on a deep level. The mixture of emotions can make it difficult to tell the people around you about your new pregnancy. The good thing is, you get to do it on your terms and in a way that feels supportive of your journey.
Suppose you want to honor your pregnancy loss while moving forward in your new pregnancy. In that case, you can make or buy some miscarriage keepsakes like birthstone jewelry or a living memorial with a hand-painted stone.
So remember, do it on your timeline, set firm and clear boundaries, and have fun with it. Never forget that this is your journey!