TW: Miscarriage¦ Finding out I was pregnant a few months after a miscarriage was such a rollercoaster of emotions. It wasn’t long before I was wiped out with morning sickness and exhaustion and I knew I had to tell my 3 year old daughter why Mummy was feeling unwell. I didn’t want her to worry something was seriously wrong with me. However, I was worried about telling her I was having a baby in case I lost it again. Therefore, I had to give what I was going to tell her a little thought.
When should I tell my child I’m pregnant?
When you tell your child you’re pregnant is totally up to you. I wanted to leave it as long as possible really; until Autumn started asking questions about why my body was changing. However, I felt so unwell that it kind of forced my hand to tell her much sooner. I didn’t feel it was fair to lie to her, especially as I didn’t know how long I’d feel like it for. She’s intelligent and needed a reasonable explanation for why Mummy had gone from playing lots and homeschooling each morning to practically bed-bound overnight!
How should I tell my child?
When I had a miscarriage in December, Autumn didn’t even know I’d been pregnant. I was only 6 weeks and had been feeling well in myself. This time, I had the dilemma of wanting and needing to tell her. Yet I didn’t want to refer to it as her ‘baby’ or ‘brother’. Then, I had a great idea.
During lockdown, we had been doing a lot of gardening. We’d seen how some seeds grew and flourished, but others didn’t. Therefore, I told her that I was growing a little seed in my tummy. I explained that sometimes a little seed in a Mummy’s tummy turns into a baby and sometimes it doesn’t; we’d just have to wait and see what happened! I also said that it was a lot of work for my body and that it was making me feel poorly.
What was my daughter’s response?
My daughter understood really well that she had to be quiet and more patient with me, as well as needing to be more careful with my tummy area. Every morning, she was so cute and made me soup in her play kitchen in an attempt to make me feel better. Every so often, she’d ask me questions about the ‘little seed’.
Once we got past the first trimester and our confidence grew, we began to refer to the baby as ‘the baby’ interspersed with the term ‘little seed’. Eventually, we found ourselves using the term ‘baby’ all the time.
I’m glad that we told her, as it’s allowed her to be part of the pregnancy journey as well. Hopefully, if I had have had another miscarriage, the term ‘little seed’ would have resulted in her feeling less sad and disappointed than if we’d told her it was a baby. Now we just need to hope that the rest of the pregnancy goes well and that we can safely welcome this little one in January!
If you’ve been in this situation, how did you approach it? I’d love to hear from you in the comments!