Pregnancy After Loss Support


For families who have experienced a loss this can heighten fears and anxieties in subsequent pregnancies. They may be afraid of having the same problem again, or you may now have a heightened awareness of many other possibilities: miscarriage, stillbirth, SUDI, an accident or sudden illness. And you may be afraid of being happy, or of being unable to love this next baby.

This is quite normal as you have already experienced an overwhelming sorrow, so your sense of security and confidence may well be undermined.

For parents whose first child has died, you may question your ability as parents. You will need support and encouragement to develop your confidence again. It may be helpful to discuss your fears and anxieties with your doctor or midwife, and possibly also with your child health nurse.

Sometimes anxiety can be reduced by changing hospitals, doctors and childcare practices, or by having scans and tests that might alert you to possible problems during pregnancy. You could discuss these with your doctor.

Many parents have intense thoughts and feelings during their pregnancy following a stillbirth or neonatal death. If your baby died before or soon after birth, you will probably have few memories of your child, and you will be grieving for all the hopes, dreams and expectations that you have lost with the death of your child. It is likely that your anxiety may be heightened during the next pregnancy, especially as your baby reaches the gestational milestones of the baby who died. You will have a greater awareness of some of the things that could possibly go wrong. You may feel acutely aware that, although this is not your first child, you may not have the experience of parenting a live child.

It is particularly important that you trust the health professionals caring for you since the memories of the care you received after the death of your baby will be vivid. Try to ensure that you find good support and someone to share your thoughts and feelings with.

Last reviewed: 15/4/24