Losing a baby is heartbreaking – and heartbreakingly common.
We generally only hear about the happy pregnancy stories on the grapevine. A girl from school who gave birth to triplets. Your close friends sharing “proud mamma” snaps with their newborns. And the countless, countless celebs who have beautiful, enviable, Instagram-perfect pregnancies.
Because of how lonely it can be, it’s easy to feel that suffering a miscarriage means you’re a failure.
But this is far from the truth. Actually, 1 pregnancy in 100 that passes the 20-week mark is affected by stillbirth. Every year in the US, around 24,000 babies are stillborn. You are not alone.
Most of us would thank our stars that we’re not in the limelight if we were ever unfortunate enough to lose a baby.
It’s bad enough having to share the news with family and friends – imagine the whole world knowing. There’s no way to quietly grieve your situation if you have strangers asking you for pregnancy updates every hour of the day.
Chrissy Teigen and John Legend shared a number of pics and videos of Chrissy’s baby bump last summer.
The pair even shared a video of an ultrasound session, where the baby could be seen kicking on the screen.
They were clearly excited to be parents, to welcome another little one into their family. The couple has two children together already, and anyone who follows them on Instagram will know that they’re doting parents.
Everything seemed to be fine with the pregnancy – apart from Chrissy’s placenta, which she talks about in the video below.
But in late September, tragedy struck.
Teigen, 34, shared the sad news on her Instagram account: she and John had lost baby number three.
The parents of 4-year-old Luna Simone and 2-year-old Miles Theodore admitted that they’d already named their third child Jack.
In the heartbreaking Instagram caption, Chrissy wrote:
“We are shocked and in the kind of deep pain you only hear about, the kind of pain we’ve never felt before. We were never able to stop the bleeding and give our baby the fluids he needed, despite bags and bags of blood transfusions. It just wasn’t enough.”
You can read the full caption in the image below.
In a later post this year, Chrissy remarked that baby Jack would have been “here any day now”, adding:
“If he were like Luna and Miles, I’d probably be holding him as we speak. I am so full of regret that I didn’t look at his face when he was born. I was so scared of seeing him in my nightmares that I forgot about seeing him in my dreams. I hurt every day from that remorse. This month is a rough reminder and to be honest, I thought the worst was over but I guess life and emotions aren’t on any sort of schedule.”
It’s incredibly brave of Chrissy and John to share their story so candidly. There is still so much awkwardness and hush-hush around stillbirths and miscarriages in the US, and the couple must have known that sharing their own story would encourage other couples to speak up about their own experiences.
Swipe through the pictures below to read Chrissy’s pregnancy story.
Having a baby is one of the most commercialized life events. We’re encouraged to believe that all of us should want to have kids at some point in our lives – and that pregnancies always end happily.
As Chrissy and John’s heartbreaking story reminds us, pregnancies aren’t guaranteed to result in a healthy birth – and when the worst happens, that grief, shame, fear, uncertainty, anger and sense of failure is so real. Most importantly of all, we shouldn’t be trying to hide these very valid feelings.
You can keep up with John and Chrissy’s difficult grief-processing journey on Instagram.
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