Offended……

Standard

Oops, maybe I am getting more sensitive. Today I have BEEN OFFENDED.

By an advertising campaign. Ouch.

I’ll tell you why (kinda what this blogging thing is about, right?).

It’s Friday afternoon, and I’ve just survived my first (almost) full week back at work. I feel both wonderful (that it’s Friday and I made it) and awful (so tired and sick), but desperately clawing at the positives and trying my best to ignore the negative. At Reading station, half way home, what do I see?


This is from a charity called The Miscarriage Association.

I understand that pregnancy is not a single path. It’s not what you necessarily want it to be. It’s not necessarily what you plan it to be. It just is. And sometimes it isn’t.

I am fortunate enough to have never been through a miscarriage myself, but I understand the sentiment behind the campaign and I agree that it is important to talk about not only the risk of miscarriage but also the truth about it. I have a number of friends who have sadly experienced miscarriages, from between 6 weeks to 6 months into their pregnancies and I make sure that I have been there to talk about it wherever possible. It’s a terrible and sad experience, and talking about it and normalising it is very important. I’m sure the miscarriage association do a great job supporting people who have been through this kind of tragedy, and it’s no doubt important that they get their name out there, to increase donations and increase their brand awareness. I understand their need to advertise and to remind people to talk about it.

On the other hand, I am trying extremely relax and enjoy my pregnancy (which is easier said than done when you’re nauseous and sick and tired.)

I have this (possibly slightly ridiculous) ideal about being “Earth Mother”– breast feeding, reuseable nappies, healthy home made baby food and generally being calm and zen. And this starts now. Hormones pass across the umbilical cord and placenta into the baby- and this includes the bad feelings of stress and negativity. As a result, despite having every natural worry about the risk of miscarriage or the many other things that can go wrong during a pregnancy, I am being sensible about how I act, but not letting myself get stressed. There is no need for me to fabricate extra worry into my life uneccesarily

Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow. It empties today of its strength.

Corrie Ten Boom

Statistics are statistics, but the numbers aren’t as clearcut as that.

I grabbed some data from Tommys

Pregnancy history and risk of miscarriage [5]
First pregnancy: 5 percent
Last pregnancy a live birth: 5 percent
All previous pregnancies resulted in live birth: 4 percent
Last pregnancy miscarried: 19 percent
All previous pregnancies miscarriaged: 24 percent

Risk of miscarriage at various ages [6]
Under 30: 10 percent risk of miscarriage
35-40: 20 percent chance of miscarriage
Over 45: 50 percent chance of miscarriage

Repeated miscarriage
• Around one woman in every 100 has recurrent miscarriages. This is roughly three times the incidence expected by chance, suggesting that there may be a specific reason for their losses [7].
• However, for some people, no underlying problem can be found and their miscarriages may be due to chance alone [7].
• When miscarriages remain unexplained, there is still a 75 percent chance that, with the benefit of supportive care, a successful pregnancy can be achieved in the future [8].

5. Regan L, Braude PR, Trembath PL. Influence of past reproductive performance on risk of spontaneous abortion. BMJ 1989;299(6698):541–5.

6. NHS Choices. Miscarriage – Causes. Available at: http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Miscarriage/Pages/Causes.aspx (2012, accessed 25 November 2012).

7. Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. Couples with recurrent miscarriage: What the RCOG guideline means for you. London: RCOG, 2004. Also available at: http://www.rcog.org.uk/files/rcog-corp/uploaded-files/PICouplesWithRecurrentMiscarriages2004.pdf (2004, accessed 25 November 2012).

8. Clifford K, Rai R and Regan L. Future pregnancy outcome in unexplained recurrent first trimester miscarriage. Human Reproduction (Oxford, England) 1997;12(2):387–9.

~~*~~*~~*~~*~~

Statistics on miscarriage are based on age, what has happened previously, health and a number of unknown underlying issues and the viability of the pregnancy. Obviously I’m not a medical doctor or any kind of expert in this field, but I do feel like the advertising campaign is misleading, using shock tactics and is a little unfair. Maybe I’m over emotional?

I’m going to get in touch with the Miscarriage Association and signpost them to this post as I think feedback is important.

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