"After my miscarriage, I blamed myself. After searching for answers and coming up empty handed, I couldn't help buy blame myself. It took a long time to realize my miscarriage was not my fault. The irony: The more I blamed myself, the more I hurt myself."- Ellen DuBois, MiscarriageHelp.com
The following is a chapter from my book on self blame:
Who could I blame for this? Did I do something wrong? Did that glass of wine I had before I even knew I was pregnant somehow hurt my baby? Did that slip on the ice have anything to do with it? What about the cigarettes I smoked? Or, or, or...
It's a very natural thing to blame yourself when you suffer a miscarriage. I did. I wracked my brain in a futile attempt to come up with some answers. Anything. Nothing the doctor said could convince me that there wasn't something I did to make this happen.
So, I prolonged my suffering. By blaming myself I only made things worse. It was not my fault-just as it's not your fault that you've miscarried. No, that glass of wine or beer you had did not cause your miscarriage. No, the argument you had with your husband did not cause you so much stress that you miscarried. No, the unhealthy food you ate from a fast food restaurant didn't do it either. Please, stop knocking yourself and blaming yourself for this. I know you need answers. You want some sort of justification for your pain and loss. But, when you continually find, or try to find blame within yourself, you are hurting yourself over and over again.
When I couldn't find blame within myself - or at least a concrete event that I could somehow link to my miscarriage, my anger turned to God. Yes, God. How could He let this happen? Why? What did I do to deserve this?
I never thought about the bigger plan. Back then, my views on life and what God's plans were for me were much different. Even if they weren't, I still would have felt tremendous pain, and my faith would have been tested to the max. I still would have wondered what kind of a God would allow such a thing to happen.
Over time, however, I learned to stop blaming God. I don't want to preach to you, but, to those of you who are looking to God for answers, you'll probably never know. In retrospect, I can now look back and realize that it was all a part of the plan for my life and accept that, as painful as it may be. It certainly isn't something I'd want to relive,and I still don't know why it happened. My marriage did end. Maybe that's part of it. Maybe my ex-husband and I just weren't cut out to be parents-we weren't cut out to be married. But, that doesn't apply to everyone, and I'm only using examples pulled from my own life. There are many women who aren't involved with partners but have miscarried. Many women have terrific marriages and miscarry. You all have your own circumstances to look at and to try to find blame in. Let me just say this: Please, for your own peace of mind, stop blaming yourself and God (if you're blaming Him, too). It's simply torture, and the more you search for answers, the longer you prolong your misery. I know it hurts. I can feel your pain. I know having the answers would take away a little of your pain. But, please consider this: Even if you had the answer right in front of you, would it really lessen your grief or sadness?
I know it wouldn't have with me. It wouldn't bring back what I lost. I know that now-only after time.
Acknowledge your pain. Feel it. But, please stop blaming yourself, God, or anyone else.
Welcome to MiscarriageHelp.com. My name is Ellen DuBois, host of this site, miscarriage survivor, and author of I Never Held You: Miscarriage, Grief, Healing and Recovery. If you or someone you love has suffered a miscarriage, please know you're not alone. Connect with people who understand.
Note: Some people find it difficult to post comments here because it's not very clear how to do it. Just hit the "comment" link under any post. I'll get your comment and respond. If it's easier, please email me. firstname.lastname@example.org
Love & comfort to you, Ellen
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