Support for Partners

“It was hard that week – people asking ‘How is Kerry’ all the time and inside I would be wondering ‘What about me?’. When was somebody going to ask if I was ok?”

Miscarriage and ectopic or molar pregnancy can be unhappy, frightening and lonely experiences for women and for their partners too. It can be hard to get answers to all the questions, especially ‘Why?’. Hard too to find people who understand, who can offer support and a listening ear.

That can be even more so for partners of women who miscarryi. Often expected to be strong, silent and supportive, you may feel invisible, as if your feelings and needs – whatever they are – aren’t that important.

New researchii amongst 160 people whose partners had been through a miscarriage showed that:

Before the miscarriage the majority of partners said they felt ‘happy’, ‘excited’, ‘thrilled’ or ‘delighted’ about the pregnancy. 55% had already picked a name for their baby, over half had read a pregnancy book and a third read parenting books too.

Cartoon of couple looking at a scan on screen. Text: "Probably the single saddest, most gut-wrenching moment of my life."

After the loss many partners reacted with feelings of sadness (85%), grief (63%) and shock (58%). But nearly a quarter didn’t share their feelings with their partner, usually for fear of upsetting her more or saying the wrong thing. Those who did share their feelings often found that it helped them both through their loss.

Cartoon of man and woman hugging. Text: "Our family and friends don't really understand. But our relationship is very strong. We support each other."

Getting support from others was more of a problem. Friends and family might ask how the woman who miscarried was coping, but never think to ask her partner, as Tom describes.

Whatever you feel about your partner’s miscarriage, we hope that you can find information, support and perhaps comfort here. We have:

videos Video clips Steve, Bill, Peter, Mel, Nikhil and Mike share their stories* about their partners’ losses (*partners’ stories, voiced by actors)
cartoon Images A series of cartoonsiii, illustrating quotes from partners
leaflet Leaflets Partners Too is written for you, the partner of someone who has had a miscarriage, ectopic or molar pregnancy.Someone You Know provides tips for family and friends on how to support both partners after pregnancy loss
stories Stories Longer personal stories written by partners
support Support Our staffed helpline, support volunteers and online support spaces are all here to help. See more details here.

i. In general, we use the term ‘miscarriage’ to include ectopic and molar pregnancy, just for ease of reading.
ii. Research carried out by Dr Petra Boynton, University College London, and funded by a Beacon Bursary. Read the press release here.
iii. Illustrations by acclaimed artist Kate Evans.