We remember the babies that have been lost: Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Month

The pink and blue awareness ribbon is a symbol for miscarriage and infertility.
The pink and blue awareness ribbon is a symbol for miscarriage and infertility.

October is pregnancy and infant loss awareness month, and according to Harvard Medical School 15% - 20% of known pregnancies end in miscarriage

The term is generally used when the loss takes place before 20 weeks of pregnancy, and the highest risk time for miscarriage is between the 12th and 14th week of the pregnancy.

Leigh-Ann Geydien from Fertility Solutions says that 1-in-6 South African couples struggle with infertility. She invites parents who have survived infertility and loss to share their stories on her website, to give other couples who are going through infertility and have experienced miscarriage a sense of hope. 

Through October many people share their experience with infertility and miscarriage to raise awareness, including on social media where families share their stories.

A beautiful example is the Serendipity Photography Facebook page, where photographer Allix captures mother's stories: 

How to help

Many of us do not normally know what to say when parents have miscarried or are struggling with infertility, but pretending that it never happened is possibly one of the worst things you could do.

Do not say, "Well, you can always try again," this might be true but it invalidates the pain the couple is experiencing or "At least it wasn’t far along yet/not a proper baby yet", as the parents were perhaps very excited about their pregnancy.

Find more tips to help friends and family in this situation here: Misunderstanding miscarriage

No matter the time frame of the pregnancy, the loss is still painful, and miscarriage can be an emotionally draining experience and many people have feelings of guilt, shock and many questions afterwards. 

Chat back:

Share your story with us, and we could publish your mail. Anonymous contributions are welcome.

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Read more:

Online support for pregnancy losses

6 signs you’re having a miscarriage

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