Back Of My Mind

anonymous:

I recently found out my mother had a miscarriage right before she became pregnant with me. The baby wasn’t far enough along to even know its gender, but finding this out has weighed very heavily on me. One, because I grew up with two older brothers (I’m a girl) and that could have easily been the older sister I always wished I’d had. And two–and this is what really bothers me–I feel like I was only born because that baby was miscarried. My mother always said she’d planned on having only three children, and I don’t think I would have even been born if she hadn’t miscarried. I don’t feel like a replacement, since that one wasn’t born yet, but it still…just bothers me I guess? Not in a way where I cried when I found out or anything, but it’s been in the back of my mind. Do you have any thoughts on this? I feel like I’m letting this bother me more than I should, and I thought you might give good advice. 🙂

cultureshift:

Though my situation is different, I can relate to why you feel a sense of loss. Knowing that your own sibling was alive but did not even make it to their birthday hurts. You think back on how your life would have been different with him or her in it and you feel sadness for all of the lost memories.

The loss of your older sibling was no one’s fault and he or she experienced a natural death. It is estimated that half of all pregnancies end in miscarriage. I believe you are correct in your assessment that you would not be reading this right now if your mother had not miscarried. But you should not feel any guilt or sense of shame for this. What happened was a natural occurrence that, sadly, happens every day.

You were obviously wanted and so was your lost sibling. The process of human reproduction is enormously complex and stunningly beautiful, but things do go wrong. The real tragedy is when it goes right and yet the mother chooses to kill her beautiful child.

You have nothing to feel bad or strange about. Your conception and birth was a natural part of the ebb and flow of life. As much as I wish your sibling had made it, I’m also glad you are here with us.

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