My best friend completely abandoned me after my miscarriage. In fact, it happened two weeks ago and I have yet to even lay eyes on her. She went to a party out of town the weekend after it happened. When she texted to ask what I was doing with my evening, I told her how much I was hurting and how much it would have meant to me to have her there, and she stopped talking to me for a week. She's texted me today, after a week of silence, and still seems to think this is a Jane issue - I didn't tell her exactly what I needed. Zero self-reflection. Zero consideration for how her behaviour contributed to this situation. I don't even think she bothered to google what she should do to help.
She doesn't see this as the significant loss I feel it has been, which is all I keep telling myself because it's the only way I can even start to wrap my head around how she's separated herself from me.
I feel like I'm grieving the loss of my baby, the loss of my excitement, the loss of a new part of my relationship with my husband, the loss of the future I was imagining, and on top of all that I'm grieving the loss of my friendship. And she doesn't even seem to notice.
I'm heartbroken on so many levels. And I don't know what to do.
cantaloupe / 6146 posts
Give her time. Our culture does not teach us how to deal with miscarriage. Mourn the baby now, and deal with the friend later, when you are ready and have the energy.
Miscarriage is so hard because we don't know what to do, on either side--experiencing it, being the dad-to-be with the loss, being a friend or family of the mom or dad... we don't know how to handle it, and when we don't know, we run or hide.
Hugs. I'm sorry for your loss.
pear / 1593 posts
I agree with @pastemoo: many people don't know how to react.
besides my closest friend, every other friend that I told about miscarriage didn't ask how I was more than maybe one more time a week or two later. we just didn't talk about it, unless I brought it up. I felt very alone - no one seemed to understand how deep the hurt ran. I wanted the baby to be acknowledged, but didn't really want to talk about it a lot either. It is a hard spot. I just had to let it go with the people.
wonderful pea / 17279 posts
I'm sorry for your loss.
Agree with PPs, people just don't know what to say or do. At this point she really doesn't know what to do now that you laid on her that she missed your expectations.
My miscarriage was an early loss and I preferred not discussing it with people IRL except for my husband. There wasn't anyone else who could understand just how much we wanted that baby and all other "words of comfort" from people just missed the mark.
apricot / 370 posts
Please forgive your friend. it's hard to understand for someone who hasn't had a miscarriage to know how to be a friend to someone who is going through one. I was that friend who didn't understand my friend going through a miscarriage. I didn't know what to do or say or how to approach her, so I let it be until she was ready to talk, but let her know i was available if she needed me. it does seem a little rough that she didn't talk back until a week later, after you telling her that you could use a friend to hang out with. but it is heartening that she did try to reach out to you. I agree that it's just a tough topic to talk about. i too had a miscarriage and just wanted to be by myself and didn't want to interact with anyone except my husband, and so then i understood how deep and hard the loss is. when you're ready, you can talk with her friend and let her know, but you might just have to give your friend some slack on this one. many hugs and I'm sorry for your loss.
watermelon / 14467 posts
I'm so sorry for your loss. But I would forgive your friend. So often, people just don't know how to act when a friend or loved one is grieving, especially if they've never been there.
grapefruit / 4731 posts
*big hugs* Sorry for your loss.
That totally sucks. I’m sorry you are going through this. It must be tough!
You have the right to be upset… you have the right to end the friendship if that’s what you want.
I’m not trying to give a reason for your friend but sometimes when someone hasn’t experienced something it’s hard for them to relate. Also this is such a *BIG* thing that people are just not sure how to comfort or be there.
That being said… because there might be reasons why she’s acting the way she is, doesn’t mean you have to accept it and try to mend the friendship. You are going through a lot and having to try to relate to her and why she’s not there for you is not worth your time right now. Just take time for yourself.
Maybe when you feel better you can decide then - that you want her back as a friend or maybe you are okay without her.
cantaloupe / 6634 posts
@janeybee: I am so, so sorry for your loss. I completely understand these feelings and they are absolutely valid. After my second loss, I felt like everyone was moving on without me and that some of my friends just didn't *get it.* I thought some of my friendships would be damaged forever.
The best thing a friend said to me was, "I don't understand this and I want to be there for you and I don't know how." I think this a sentiment that many people feel but don't know how to articulate it.
If this is a true friend, you should tell her what you need. Maybe it's a night in watching Pride and Prejudice or a getting a drink. She may be trying to give you space. An honest talk seems to be in order.
This time is confusing but there is so, so much hope for you.
pea / 22 posts
@simplyfelicity: Can you come be my friend and watch Pride and Prejudice with me? You've figured me right out! xo
persimmon / 1483 posts
I'm so sorry for your loss. I could totally be your friend. Even having struggled through infertility and countless insensitive comments, because I have not experienced a miscarriage, it is incomprehensible to me how that loss feels or what someone I love would need from me while going through it. Honestly, it would never occur to me that you would want me to change my weekend plans to be with you. And then if you had called me out on it, I can totally see myself being defensive and pulling back. I'm not saying it's the right response, but I can see myself doing it. On the other hand, if my friend had said before "hey - can you not go to X place this weekend, I really need to get a drink/watch a movie/whatever" I would have had no problems dropping my plans and doing that. My point is not to justify your friend's choices or to imply that you should have done something different, just to say that sometimes people really really need things spelled out to them, not because they don't care,, but because they really don't understand how painful something is or how that can help.
cantaloupe / 6634 posts
@janeybee: Of course! As long as it's the one with Colin Firth.
pea / 22 posts
@Madison43: I guess my hurt feelings come from the fact that I did indeed spell it out for her, and she chose to not be there and is now saying she doesn't know what she did to make me sad... it's a complicated situation no matter which way it happens. I guess it's just sad all around, which is what I'm realizing. xo
grapefruit / 4988 posts
I'm sorry for your loss. I agree with the previous posters about how our culture really does not teach us how to deal with miscarriage in others. That said, it sounds like you did reach out. At this point, I'd just give it time. I'm sure you are still feeling acute pain from the loss itself and honestly it may be easier to deal with your friend after some time has gone by.
I will be honest, I don't tell anyone about my losses anymore because I have learned the hard way. My MIL (who is normally the most wonderful woman) has the reaction of shutting down entirely around me when I go through a loss. She doesn't say "I'm sorry", doesn't check in, doesn't say anything at all. In short, she acts as if the pregnancy never happened at all. It is beyond hurtful but I have just recognized that she has no idea what to do or say so I just let it go.
wonderful clementine / 24134 posts
I'll be honest and say I'm probably "that friend" more often then I would like to be. My heart is in the right place (what can I do to step up) but the execution because of my fear or messing it up more or it not being just right usually never let me pull the trigger.
pomelo / 5220 posts
I am so very sorry for your loss. I would focus on healing yourself for now, and worry about the friendship later. If she isn't being there for you the way you need don't waste any more emotional energy on her for now. xoox.
persimmon / 1045 posts
You've got some awesome advice, I'm sorry you're going through all of this though. I found similar things happened after my mc too - I reached out to one friend in particular but she didn't respond. To be fair, she didn't know it was a mc but I did indicate it was a really rough time & she still didn't say anything. I didn't contact her for months, but it wasn't out of spite - it was just trying to preserve myself! I would focus energy on you, your family and let yourself heal. Friends who care will still be there when you come out the other side. Hugs. It's sucha hard time but things will get easier
pear / 1767 posts
My sister had a miscarriage long before I had my two miscarriages and I'm almost certain I said all of the wrong things. It's really hard to understand how it feels until you are standing in those shoes. I still feel badly that I wasn't able to give the kind of support then that I know I would give now given that I've experienced what I experienced.
pea / 22 posts
This has been amazing advice - thanks everyone! You've all helped me feel justified in my feelings, but also have helped me understand that I might need to give her a break and just move on (although she likely won't be the first person I go to for comfort and support next time life happens...).
cantaloupe / 6634 posts
@Shantuck: Are we the same person? Several years before I had LO, my sister had two CPs. I, too, am sure I said the absolute wrong things. It was hard for me to fathom how attached someone could become to a pregnancy they knew about for a week. I thought about it as a loss of a pregnancy, not a loss of a baby. Since my two losses, I told her how I must have said the wrong thing and apologized (she said she can't recall if I said anything or not.) But I know I didn't reach out to her as I should have because it was just beyond my depth of knowledge (boy do I sound like a teacher!)
pear / 1767 posts
@simplyfelicity: I hate that I have to experience something firsthand to know how to appropriately respond. I've tried to learn from it and be more empathetic. Sometimes you just need the other person to agree that what happened sucks and is unfair and just hate the world with you (until you are ready not to hate the world again!).
nectarine / 2148 posts
@janeybee: I am really sorry to hear about your loss and grief. This was a very similar situation for me I felt with my family. They never bothered to check up and see how I was doing. I know people don't know how to react to someone who is grieving, but I never understand why people can't at least say 'I'm thinking of you and let me know if you need anything.' I never thought it was a complicated thing. It's definitely moments when you learn who is there for you and who isn't. It took me a long time to get over it. I hope that your healing process goes well
pear / 1558 posts
@janeybee: I'm sorry for your loss. Fortunately, you've gotten great advice & insight from pp's.
My loss is what brought me to HB. We had just shared with my family that we were expecting since we travelled to see them & while still visiting I mc'd at 6.5wks, so naturally we shared our devastating news, too. My family was loving & kind, of course, but I didn't share with my friends, because I didn't really know how to go into it, I felt too vulnerable to open up to them, and I also didn't trust they'd be "understanding enough" in that raw time. My DH & I grew stronger over our shared devastation, but it wasn't until we conceived again that we shared more widely about our mc. Some people still didn't know what to say about the loss or "scolded" us for not having told them sooner--not so helpful, that felt like they just wanted the latest gossip-- and some were very kind and thoughtful & even shared about their own losses. My point is, pregnancy is such a personal thing anyway, that the loss of a pregnancy just really can't truly be understood by anyone until you've experienced it, in my opinion. I'm very empathetic, but I don't think I would have known how devastating it would feel to lose a baby so early on until I did. I think your friend just doesn't know what to do or say. Take your time & heal yourself first, and then if she hasn't come around, you can work on the friendship later. In the mean time, while virtual friends, you certainly have many many ladies here who know exactly what you're feeling.