Dealing with Miscarriage in Your Marriage

Miscarriage - Sad Mother Sitting In Empty Nursery Photoclub_15935926How do you deal in your marriage, with the death of a child that you never had the opportunity to hold in your arms? And yet you held them, and always will, in your heart. How does any human being emotionally deal with such a grievous loss of a miscarriage?

Tragically, so many couples deal with this horrible situation every day. They lose their baby sometime during the pregnancy. It is commonly called a “miscarriage.” Even the word “miscarriage” brings with it the thought that the parent will “miss” being able to “carry” their baby physically, this side of heaven. For those of you who are grieving through this loss, the emotional effects upon your marriage and upon each of you as individuals, can vary greatly.

“Sometimes a husband may blame his wife, or the wife may even blame her husband. Confusion and hurt can develop and cause great tension in a marriage if they are not handled properly.” (Elizabeth Honeycutt, who developed

Giving Grace After Miscarriage

That is why it is extremely important to give each other the grace that is needed so the grieving process doesn’t push you  apart as a married couple. You need to work together as partners through tragedies that you encounter. There’s something that Christi Bear wrote, that you might consider about all of this. It comes from the article “Understanding Miscarriage”:

“It’s common to experience extreme sadness, anger, guilt and anxiety about future pregnancies. There is no ‘typical’ time-frame for emotional recovery. Every woman experiences the grieving process in her own way. She travels the road to healing at her own pace. While it’s important to allow time and personal ‘space’ for grieving, if the grief becomes too overwhelming —leading to a more serious episode of depression and despondency —it may be necessary to get professional help.

“Fathers, too, are profoundly affected by the loss of a child. Unfortunately, a common misconception regarding miscarriage and stillbirth is that only the mother is affected. Women often feel more freedom to cry and express their grief. But men tend to feel pressure to ‘remain strong.’ Often they busy themselves with work or other activities in an effort to deal with their grief. Because men and women typically express their emotions and process their grief differently, it’s important for both parents to communicate their feelings to one another. This helps to avoid the added pain of misunderstandings.”

Miscarriage: When the Cradle Is Empty

John and Sylvia Van Regenmorter wrote something about this in their book, When the Cradle is Empty. It’s something that could help to explain the pain and tension that a miscarriage can bring into the marriage:

“The following reactions are common among women. They wonder: ‘Does my husband feel as badly as I do about our baby? Does he know that since our baby died, I hate having sex? Why do I feel so unattractive? Why is becoming pregnant again such an obsession for me, but not for him?’

“Conversely, it’s not uncommon for the husband to think, ‘I have to be strong for my wife’s sake. She’ll only grieve more if I show my emotions, so I’ll keep my thoughts to myself. Why has she withdrawn sex? Is she blaming me? I know she wants to become pregnant again, but I’m afraid of what losing another baby would do to her. It seems like she’s crying all the time, and it’s really getting to me. I wish we could be happy again, like we were before the baby died.'”

John and Sylvia go on to give suggestions for walking through the loss of a baby. It’s important to personalize your baby, and not rush through to “move on” before you are ready. It’s also important to bring “your turmoil to God.” But they also suggest that you “grieve in your own way.”

They write:

“Greg Bodin, director of pastoral care at North Medical Center in Minnesota, has worked with hundreds of families who’ve experienced miscarriage, still-birth, or early infant death. He and his wife have also suffered the loss of two children through miscarriage and stillbirth. Among the things he’s learned are:

• Loss is uniquely personal. There is no typical response or ‘right’ reaction to a pregnancy loss or death of a newborn.

• Feel the freedom to grieve in your own way. Don’t let anyone prescribe how you should feel. And don’t try to adapt your feelings to the expectations of others.

• Remember that the length of pregnancy doesn’t correlate to the grief felt. Some parents experience a great sense of loss even though the pregnancy was short-term.”

“Many couples feel the grief over miscarriage or stillbirth years after the loss,” Elizabeth Honeycutt from says. “Others close up their feelings and try their best to move forward. For those who have felt the personal pain of losing a baby, the emotions, questions and grief need to be felt, answered, and worked through.”

A Few Things to Help After a Miscarriage

To help those of you who are living through the pain and confusion this experience brings into your life, we have found a few articles posted on different web sites, written by those who have experienced miscarriage, firsthand. We pray they will minister to your hearts and your marriage relationship.

The following is a linked article is written by Laura Mills. Please read:


You will find below a linked Focus on the Family article, written by Lisa Brock. It is one of a 4-part series on the subject of miscarriage that we recommend you read (each one). We believe you will gain further insight into your situation as you read:


Below are a few things that Marlo Schalesky  learned through the ordeal of her and her husband experiencing 6 miscarriages. (She wrote about them in a Today’s Christian Woman article titled, “Surviving Miscarriage” that you could find insightful to read.)

In this article Marlo talks about the different ways of dealing with grief. That’s a big part of the problem she and her husband were having, concerning the miscarriages.

She wrote that she and her husband Bryan were having marital problems after her miscarriages (which is quite common). They kept arguing to the point that she didn’t feel like he cared about the losses like she did. But she eventually saw that the problem she was having was that he wasn’t “reacting” like she thought he should. She couldn’t understand the way he was acting and reacting. 

She wrote:

“I wanted him to be more emotional. And he wanted me to be less. Only later would we realize that each of us faces hard times in life in different ways. I get mad. He gets stony quiet. And that’s okay. To partner with each other through grief didn’t mean we had to be mirrors of each other. Instead, it meant we had to stand alongside each other, supporting each other as we allowed the other to process miscarriage in our own individual ways. We had to stop judging, stop expecting, and stop secretly demanding.”

She went on to write:

“When we started to allow each other to process the grief of miscarriage differently, without judging or accusing, we found that partnering with each other through the process drew us together and strengthened our marriage. The lessons we learned about each other could then be applied to other areas of stress in our lives. When Bryan came home cold and stony from work, I knew he’d had a bad day. I also knew that it didn’t have anything to do with me or his love for me. When I blew my top over something small, he learned not to take it personally. Instead he would ask me how my day went because he knew something hard must have happened to set me off.

“Once we lifted the burden of expectation, we found we could appreciate, support, and allow each other the grace to be partners in the process instead of copies of each other.”

You can read about Marlo’s experiences by googling the title and author on the Internet.

Don’t and Do Tell Me

And then here’s something I’d like to share with you that is written by someone unknown. And yet the advice given may be important for others to know about:

Don’t tell me, “You can have another baby.” How do you know? Besides, I want this baby.

Don’t tell me, “at least it happened before it was born. It’s not like you knew the baby.” I did know my baby. For the short time s/he was with me, I loved my baby with all my heart. I had hopes and dreams for this baby. And I had names picked out, plus a theme for the nursery. I knew my baby was going to be a very special person.

Don’t tell me, “It’s just one of those things.” It was not just “one of those things” from my viewpoint. Miscarriage has had a devastating effect on my life, and making it sound as though it was an unimportant event does not lessen the impact.

Don’t tell me, “It’s common,” or “It happens to a lot of women.” This happened to me, and all I want is to have my baby back.

Don’t tell me, “It was just a blob of tissue.” In my heart and in God’s eyes, I know I was carrying a living being inside me from the moment s/he was conceived. Please don’t trivialize my beliefs or that precious life.

Don’t tell me, “You should be over it by now.” Even though the physical effects may have subsided, I am still hurting emotionally. My child has died, and it takes much longer than a week or two to recover from that pain.


Don’t tell me, “You’ll get over it.” The miscarriage was the death of my child. I will never “get over it.” The pain and grief will eventually lessen, but I will always wonder what my child would have been like. Every should-have-been birthday, and every anniversary of the miscarriage will be a reminder.

Don’t tell me, “You should get pregnant again as soon as possible. That’ll help.” Help what? I need time to grieve the baby I have lost. I can’t even begin to think about getting pregnant again at this time.

Don’t tell me, “It won’t happen again. The next time will be fine.” Again, how do you know? My second pregnancy ended in miscarriage also, even after doctors said there was no reason it wouldn’t be successful the second time around.


Do listen to me when I want, or need, to talk about what I am going through.

Do be sensitive to the fact that I probably won’t want to hear about your pregnant friend, neighbor, cousin, or daughter. I won’t want to hear about your new grandchildren or nieces and nephews for a while.

Do give me time to grieve. Some days I may need your shoulder to cry on after everyone else thinks I should be “okay” by now.

Do understand that there are “milestone days,” such as the expected due date of the time I should have felt the first kick, when I will be feeling the loss as deeply as when the miscarriage occurred. I will need your support then.

Lastly, Concerning Miscarriage:

The following is an article that is written by Francesca Di Meglio. In it Francesca covers “how to get through a miscarriage and perhaps come out with a stronger marriage.” She also covers, in his article, the issues of “telling others” and “meeting basic needs.” And then lastly this article deals with “whether to try again.” To learn more read:


As you deal with miscarriage in your marriage:

May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus, so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ!(Romans 15:5-6)

May the Lord of peace Himself give you peace at all times in every way. The Lord be with you.(2 Thessalonians 3:16)

Cindy Wright of Marriage Missions International wrote this article.

If you have additional tips you can share to help others, please “Join the Discussion” by adding your comments below.

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50 responses to “Dealing with Miscarriage in Your Marriage

  1. (US)  In January of this year I found out I was 6 weeks pregnant and mid in February I miscarried the baby 2 days after my husband deployed. He has come home due to an accident on the job. But since he has been home he says I don’t look at him the same, almost like I hate him. We just got married in February and things between us have been strained. I Love him more than anything and I don’t know what’s wrong with me. I know it changes you, this kind of loss, but I don’t want to lose my baby and my husband. I don’t know if anyone else has felt this way but I’m scared and stressed out right now. I don’t know what to do.

  2. (USA)  It’s been a week since my miscarriage. I’m very lonely and scared. I love my husband so much but I can’t reach him and I am too sad to try anymore. We have a beautiful and healthy 2 year old son that I just can’t get enough of but my husband seems short with him and less interested than ever.

    Sometimes my husband has bouts of kindness only followed by lots of dirty looks, rolling eyes, huffing, puffing, and storming out of the room over nothing at all.

    I’m just so lost and tired and empty. I fight through my days for my son but I don’t know how long I can hang on. Please pray for God to give me strength and help me to forgive my husband and myself for not knowing quite how to handle all of this.

  3. (ZIMBABWE)  I lost my baby boy Michael in July. I am very sad, but I am not crying as much as I used to. I feel more depressed though. I go for counseling once a week which has helped. Sometimes I think I can move on, other days I know I can’t. I miss him so much and wish things had been different. My husband wants more kids and sometimes I think I can do it… other days I don’t. Is there anyone out there who has lost a baby and has been able to go on to have other children successfully? I lost Michael because of a cord accident.

  4. (USA)  I had a miscarriage at 13 weeks back in June, 2011. I had a highly stressful summer. My 4 year old was gone visiting his father for the first time for 2 and a half months. My husband took a job two hours away and left me with our one year old daughter and to deal with the move and my absent son alone.

    Before the summer started I had picture of a perfect little family in my head, I knew this Christmas season there would be three children and it seemed all to perfect. Thank God for good friends, one of which was there in the hospital with me to learn the baby was gone. My husband came back for the D&C, but once we were done, ran right back to work. I was so angry and it has taken me 6 months to realize, how much hurt this has caused.

    Now 6 months later I am no where close to my strong Christian friends, bad financial decisions on my husbands part has put my family in horrible living conditions. I took a part time night job to help with finances, and not to have to pay for daycare. We live in a very small town now with no options at all. So I work in a bar till 2 am, then get up early with my kids. I am so upset by this all. The baby who should be here any day now, is not. Kids, my husband does not seem to care about how they have to live now. I am so depressed, unhappy and at the end of rope I don’t know what to do. I want to leave the marriage, but that will only cause worse financial hardship.

    What to do when life just got too horrible to deal with?

  5. (UNITED STATES)  Thank you so much for this article and the others attached. I have two beautiful children and the most wonderful wife. Today she miscarried… We do NOT question God or his plan. We are just… sad. Thank you for the advice and for the different perspectives represented. I know I will be better able to minister to my wife as a result of these articles.

    Men – Please be Men. Love Christ first and best. Then, devote yourself to your wife. These are God’s priorities.

    1. Scott, I’m so, so sorry and sad for you and your wife and the HUGE loss you are experiencing. Please give your wife an extra hug from us here at Marriage Missions. Also, thank you for the inspiring words you wrote to husbands. We appreciate it and appreciate you!

  6. (RSA)  I lost my baby on the 24 August 2011 @ 6 weeks. I should be preparing for the arrival now.

    My husband was working 1000 km from home and could not be there for the D&C. I went through this by myself and still had to take care of our 2 yr old. I only saw him 2 weeks later. It hurts as if it happened yesterday. Will the grief ever end? Will the sense of not being careful or protective over my baby ever end? The sense of feeling that I failed my child, will it ever end? I now know that I would not have had the full pregnancy as it was ectopic but I still feel that there should be something that I should have done.

    I lost my second baby 3 months later and I don’t know how to grieve for them as I am still in the daze of the first miscarriage.

  7. (AUSTRALIA) Hello, I was wondering how much do you charge as I’m interested in joining your program Hope Alive. How long does Hope alive program go for? Where are you in NSW I live in tweed heads. Thank you for your time. Jacqueline

  8. (AMERICA) Hi, I lost my son at 30 weeks –a still born. I was so hurt; my husband was very supportive and I never experienced anything like that. I feel like people think it’s my fault. No one from my job came to visit or even bought a card, but they saw me pregnant they saw me trying to work and told me to stop and sit down and I would not because I felt fine… full of energy. My job was easy, I work with kids.

    I feel alone and confused and play back each moment while I was pregnant. If I would have done this, my son would have lived… I also blame my husband for his death and I feel bad. His baby’s momma gave me trouble while I was pregnant. I envy her that they have a daughter (10) together and I had a son (12) already before we got together. I feel like she won and got what she wanted; she didn’t like the fact that I was pregnant with his first Boy. She picked and picked until I cursed her out. I feel like she won and got what she wanted and that’s losing my baby boy.

    I become angry because now he wants to speak up to the daughter when she too was messy and he tells her don’t ever ask him for anything. He’s been bitter towards her and I feel like he’s wrong, but the medical examiner said my baby died of a placenta infarction. I know my husband had nothing to do with it. I am just grieving and the pain hurts. I want to leave because I hurt him and he won’t let me live that down because I told him it’s his fault. I feel so stupid. My heart is so empty. I know divorce is not the answer. I feel like she won and I hope he forgives me.

    1. Dearest Kia, I’m so sorry for the loss of your son. I can only imagine how empty your arms are and how devastating this is for you. My heart cries for you and with you.

      Kia, I have a few thoughts to give to you and then I greatly encourage you to go into the “Links and Resource Descriptions” part of the “Children’s Effects on Marriage” topic. You will find a number of web sites, which minister to those who have lost babies. They would be able to give you the best help –better than we can, because they have experienced much of what you are going through.

      As far as what comes to mind as I pray through your comment is to encourage you to try to release what you can, as far as what you think other people are thinking about you. Most likely, they don’t think what you believe they do –those are imaginations that are run-away in a damaging direction. Most likely they don’t think that, and if they did, it would be out of ignorance. They don’t understand the nature of what truly happened. You could have been bed-ridden the whole time and this would have happened. It’s what happens sometimes for some unknown reason. Please try not to project hidden meanings behind their silence. They just don’t know what they’re doing.

      What I’ve learned about people’s responses when a huge tragedy happens to someone, is that they often don’t do what they should. For one reason, they don’t know what to do –they haven’t experienced this type of horror so they can’t relate. They want to reach out but feel awkward and think that by not reaching out, they’re sparing you additional pain by not “bringing up” the subject. If they had been through anything like that, they would know that what you have been through and the terrible loss you’re experiencing is on your mind all the time. Their sympathetic gestures could actually help, rather than hurt you more. But they don’t “get it” so they avoid bringing it up –not out of not caring, but because they don’t know what to do with it. They’re confused too. I’m sorry that you’re experiencing this.

      I can well appreciate that you feel “alone and confused” right now. You have a lot to try to work through in all of this (that’s why reaching out to those who better understand might help). But please don’t play the blame game as far as thinking “I should have, could have, wish I did…” The loss happened and it isn’t anyone’s fault –not yours, not your husband’s. And please don’t let this tragedy split you and your husband. This is a time to try to pull together, rather than allow it to come between you. Don’t add another tragedy onto this one. As you said, you “know” your husband “had nothing to do” with the death of your child. Please don’t allow the enemy of our faith to play such evil tricks on you, as to get you to think others blame you and then you blame yourself, and then shift a different blame unto your husband. As I said, work to pull together, rather than apart. You’re stronger together. I hope the articles we have posted on this site and other sites and resources we recommend can help you with this mission of releasing blame.

      And as for your husband’s former wife, well, that’s just plain pettiness on her part –wrong, on so many levels. Please don’t waste any more energy on thinking about her and what she does or doesn’t do or should or shouldn’t have done. It will hurt you all the more. Work on NOT envying her or grabbing onto the wrong that she’s done, but to deal with your own personal grief because of this horrible loss. Truly, would you wish this on anyone else –to have such empty arms? I don’t believe you would. I sense that you are a caring person –it’s just that you’re hurting so desperately, that you’re confused and in your confusion, you’re reacting in ways that you wouldn’t normally.

      Again, I’m so very, very sorry for the pain you’re going through and hope you will get help to sort out Truth, rather than grabbing at that which will only make you suffer more. Your baby’s mother deserves better. You deserve better. I pray the Lord helps you, and guides you, and comforts you, and speaks to you, and works in and through you and your marriage in this situation –to strengthen you. I also pray God infuses hope into your heart that you will eventually experience better days –ones that will bring a smile to your heart –even though right now you can’t even imagine that as a possibility. May God’s love encompass you in comfort and hope.

  9. (US) We had a miscarriage in May 2012. The last 5 months have been so hard for our marriage. This site has helped me understand my husband a little more. I feel like I have dealt with it and he hasn’t. We are going to counseling in 2 days so I hope he talks and we can figure it out. He is a very internal person so I don’t know how he feels about everything. We are still trying to get pregnant again. I pray that God blesses us with a child.

  10. (ENGLAND) I have just had a miscarriage a couple of days ago. I’ve been acting as normal as possible around friends and family but every time I am by myself I just want to break down and cry. I feel so empty inside and it feels like I am just going through the motions day in day out. I can’t even let it all out in front of my husband who deep down I know is completely crushed inside but feels like he needs to be strong for me.

    I just don’t know how to get through this and if its ever going to get easier? I was so excited to be a mum and now I feel like everything is shattered and I’m just keeping everything bottled up inside.

  11. Hello. I am so sorry to read about everyone’s experience with losing a child. I pray that God is with everyone of you. I just experienced this three weeks ago and my heart hurts. I have a son who is almost four but this is taking a toll on me. I feel like I failed as a mother. My boyfriend and I are being torn apart. We stopped talking about it. I can’t cry anymore but all I feel is this failure and this deep sadness. I don’t know how but I knew my baby was going to be a girl. I wanted her more than anything.

  12. Love this article. Recently had a miscarriage and just had surgery for it. The thing I’m tired of people telling me is that they’ve had miscarriages. I’m not trying to be rude but I don’t care and it doesn’t make me feel better. The baby I carried for 8 weeks was the one I wanted. My husband and I had so many dreams. The only peace I have right now is knowing that my baby is sitting on Jesus’ lap. I can’t wait for the day that I get to meet my sweet love.

  13. Can one offer any advice? My wife and I have recently suffered the loss of our unborn child. My wife has recently said that she is a failure and the loss was her fault. I tried to tell her that this isn’t true and she can’t think like that but her response was well I do so deal with it! I have no idea how to help her and I feel helpless and useless for not being able to help her feel better. If anyone has any advice for me I would greatly appreciate it. I can’t stand to see her like this.

    1. Ryan, I grieve with you and your wife over the loss of your unborn child. I can’t even imagine the many levels of hurt, lost hope, and the painful feeling of empty arms this has brought into your life together. I pray God brings light, out of the darkness for you as you seek relief in some way.

      The best I can recommend is for you to go back into this article again. I fixed a few linked articles that only had partial info in them (this happened without our knowing it). Please read them now, in their entirety. And look for additional books and resources (we link to a few that will be a good start) that will also give you insights into this painful life event, in how you can best get to a healing place. Please visit this link to get some recommendations of books and web sites, which could possibly help you and your wife:

      The loss will always be there, but the pain of it can eventually lessen as you reach out for healthy insights, from those who have been through this loss, themselves. Pray for insight, read, glean, and see what you can learn that will help you and your wife. I pray for you both… may God help to heal your broken hearts.

      Do what you can to honor this child by leaning towards each other, giving each other grace and space, as needed, but never forgetting that this child came because of love… honor him or her by showing each other love all the more until you are reunited together someday in heaven. It won’t be easy… trials like this often tear couples apart because of the confusion that is ushered in (especially as the enemy of our faith works to infuse confusion, accusations, and discontent). But stand strong in being loving and supportive so you will grow all the more strong in your love for each other.

  14. My wife who has 3 kids, had a miscarriage with our first, and I took it really hard but she didn’t. I don’t really know how I should feel about this.