On Wednesday, Duchess Meghan Markle wrote an article in New York Times, where she is rarely open about privacy.
In the article “The losses we share”, Markle tells candidly about her second pregnancy, which ended in a miscarriage this summer. She also pays tribute to women who have shared their story of losing a child.
10 to 30 percent end up in miscarriage
Markle writes that through an unbearable grief she discovered that more people experience the same thing, but few talk about it.
– In a room with 100 women, ten to twenty of them have had a miscarriage. Nevertheless, the conversation is taboo and embraced by grief, Markle writes in the text.
Like the Duchess, the leader of the Norwegian Midwives’ Association, Hanne Charlotte Schjelderup-Eriksen, points out that miscarriage is undoubtedly a taboo topic in society.
– 10 to 30 percent of all pregnancies end in miscarriage. That is, it is completely normal, but still there are relatively few who talk about it, says Schjelderup-Eriksen to TV 2.
Randi Fuglehaug is the host of the podcast Fødselspodden. She talks to several women who experience miscarriage and who together want to normalize it.
– There is a big mismatch between how common miscarriage is, and how many people actually talk about it. Even if one were to think that openness was strong in 2020, this is something many people experience loneliness around.
Uncertainty in early pregnancy
Leader of the Midwifery Association, Schjelderup-Eriksen, says that many wait to announce pregnancy before 12 weeks have passed. At the same time, most miscarriages occur during the first twelve weeks.
Fuglehaug thinks this may be a reason why many people keep a close eye on the abortion, because they have not had time to tell about the pregnancy.
– You are trained to wait to tell about the pregnancy until it has been twelve weeks. But then a miscarriage happens, and then it can seem that many feel that it is something you have to stand in, because you “knew” that the risk was there early in the pregnancy.
The podcast host himself has experienced a miscarriage in week 8 and says that it can, for many, be as painful as later in pregnancy.
– For me it was very dramatic. I had not talked to anyone about being pregnant at all. When I said that I had been, but had a miscarriage, I received feedback that several had experienced the same thing, says Fuglehaug.
Schjelderup-Eriksen also experiences that many women keep this to themselves because they are still in an early phase. She still encourages you to talk about it as soon as you are ready.
– Women who experience an abortion should have access to follow-up by a midwife if they need it. Many also find support in partners, families and other parts of the health care system.
She points out that grief can be experienced very differently from woman to woman, where some experience great grief, while others may feel relief.
Praises for openness
Both Schjelderup-Eriksen and Fuglehaug believe that Meghan Markle’s openness to abortion is very important for bringing the topic further in the world.
– Markle has proven to be a woman with great impact. It is very important for other women that she talks openly about this, says Fuglehaug.
TV 2’s correspondent in London, Tonje Iversen, says that Meghan’s openness gets enormous attention in the British media.
– It is the first time a member of the royal family writes about this in the way she does. It affects people all over the world.
Iversen says that many charities praise Meghan for breaking the taboo culture – a culture that is about not talking about pregnancy until after twelve weeks, because miscarriage is so common.
– Now women are calling for people to talk openly about everything! Everything that is good, and everything that is difficult, says Fuglehaug.