In an emotional essay for The New York Times called “The Losses We Share,” the Duchess of Sussex wrote that she knew something “was not right” when she was holding her son, Archie, one morning.
“After changing his diaper, I felt a sharp cramp,” she said. “I dropped to the floor with him in my arms, humming a lullaby to keep us both calm, the cheerful tune a stark contrast to my sense that something was not right.”
“I knew, as I clutched my firstborn child, that I was losing my second,” Meghan said.
The duchess said that “losing a child means carrying an almost unbearable grief, experienced by many but talked about by few.”
“Yet despite the staggering commonality of this pain, the conversation remains taboo, riddled with (unwarranted) shame, and perpetuating a cycle of solitary mourning,” Meghan added. “In the pain of our loss, my husband and I discovered that in a room of 100 women, 10 to 20 of them will have suffered from miscarriage.”
Shortly after the piece was published, supporters began praising Meghan for not only sharing her story of loss, but for doing so despite facing “almost unsurvivable” online hate over the past few years.
Prince Harry’s uncle, Charles Spencer — the 9th Earl Spencer and the late Princess Diana’s brother — spoke about the loss on Wednesday while appearing on the British talk show “Lorraine.”
“I can’t imagine the agony for any couple of losing a child in this way.” Charles said. “It’s so very, very sad. And of course, I totally agree with you, all thoughts with them today.”
In addition to Meghan, two other members of the royal family have experienced and spoken about their own pregnancy loss.
Sophie, Countess of Wessex, who is married to Queen Elizabeth’s son Prince Edward, also experienced pregnancy loss in 2001.
“I’m obviously very sad — but it was just not meant to be,” she said at the time, according to the BBC. “But there will be other chances”.
Zara Tindall, the queen’s granddaughter and daughter of Princess Anne, spoke about having a miscarriage in an interview with the Sunday Times in 2016.
“For me, the worst bit was that we had to tell everyone — everyone knew,” the British equestrian said. “I had to go through having the baby because it was so far along. I then had another miscarriage really early on.”
“It was a time when my family came to the fore and I needed them,” Tindall added. “You need to go through a period where you don’t talk about it because it’s too raw, but, as with everything, time’s a great healer.”
If you or someone you know is showing symptoms of bleeding early into their pregnancy, see a doctor or visit your nearest emergency hospital.
If you are affected by the loss of a baby, SANDS Australia offers support through local support groups and a 24/7 phone line on 1300 072 367.
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