The Duchess of Sussex has revealed she had a miscarriage in July, writing in an article of feeling an almost unbearable grief. Duchess of Sussex have spoken openly about having a miscarriage and said that too often women and their partners still felt stifled and silenced by outdated cultural norms.
Writing in “The New York Times”, Meghan recalls a morning in July changing the nappy of her son, Archie Harrison Mountbatten Windsor, when she felt a sharp cramp. She went on to describe how she watched her husband’s heart break as he tried to hold the shattered pieces of mine. Meghan further wrote about the loss and pain has plagued every one of us in 2020. The 39-year-old shared her experience to urge people to commit to asking others “are you OK?”
She wrote in her essay
“I dropped to the floor with him in my arms, humming a lullaby to keep us both calm, the cheerful tune a stark contrast to my sense that something was not right,” She further wrote, “I knew, as I clutched my firstborn child that I was losing my second.”
The 39-year-old Duchess of Sussex; Meghan Markle explains how she found herself in a hospital bed hours later with the Duke of Sussex by her side.
“I felt the clamminess of his palm and kissed his knuckles, wet from both our tears,” she writes. Staring at the cold white walls, my eyes glazed over. I tried to imagine how we’d heal.”
In Meghan’s article, she recalls Bradby asking her if she was “OK” during filming in a now-infamous moment in the documentary.
Meghan made it clear from the first event that she spoke at as “Harry’s bride-to-be” that she wanted women’s voices and women’s experiences to be heard more clearly. Now she has written of her loss, and her heartbreak. She has set it in the context of a year of breathtaking turbulence. And she has made a plea for tolerance and compassion.
She weaves in the struggles of so many with Covid-19, the battles over truth and lies in our divided age, the killing of black Americans by the police. And on an experience that so many women have lived through, she has made her grief a way of bringing miscarriage closer to the everyday conversation.
The duchess continued: “Losing a child means carrying an almost unbearable grief, experienced by many but talked about by few.” She added, “In the pain of our loss, my husband and I discovered that in a room of 100 women, 10 to 20 of them will have suffered from miscarriage.”
“Yet despite the staggering commonality of this pain, the conversation remains taboo, riddled with (unwarranted) shame, and perpetuating a cycle of solitary mourning.
“Some have bravely shared their stories; they have opened the door, knowing that when one person speaks truth, it gives license for all of us to do the same.”
The duchess also referenced a TV interview in South Africa in which she was asked by a journalist if she was ok? She said “she was asked the question during a time in which she was trying to keep a brave face in the very public eye”.
She wrote in her essay to The New York Times that, “I answered him honestly, not knowing that what I said would resonate with so many – new moms and older ones, and anyone who had, in their own way, been silently suffering,”
Meghan continues her essay by opening up about Prince Harry’s reaction to the miscarriage.
She wrote, “Sitting in a hospital bed, watching my husband’s heart break as he tried to hold the shattered pieces of mine, I realized that the only way to begin to heal is to first ask, ‘Are you OK?'”
Meghan then references Breonna Taylor, a black 26-year-old medical worker who was fatally shot by police while sleeping in her flat in Louseville, Kentucky.
She extended her essay by writing, “She doesn’t live to see the morning because a police raid turns horribly wrong,” she adds before going on to discuss the killing of George Floyd, whose death at the hands of a white police officer in Minneapolis sparked furious protests around the world.”
“On top of all of this, it seems we no longer agree on what is true,” Meghan further wrote “We aren’t just fighting over our opinions of facts; we are polarized over whether the fact is, in fact, a fact.”
Meghan goes on to discuss the dangers of what she refers to as “siloed living” i.e. not stopping to ask people if they are ok, referring to how she regrets not stopping to speak to a sobbing woman whom she saw on the streets of New York City years ago.
The Duchess concludes her essay by describing the “unbearable grief” of losing a child, and the unfortunate frequency with which it occurs.
Meghan calls for readers to commit to asking one another if they are OK, a question that she argues is needed now more than ever. She penned her heart done by concluding, “For the first time, in a long time, as human beings, we are really seeing one another,” she writes. “Are we OK? We will be.”
The duchess’s miscarriage happened at a time when she was involved in legal action against the Mail on Sunday over the publication of a letter she wrote to her father. Last month she was granted apostponement of her privacy trial until autumn next year.
Baby loss charities have called for a cultural shift to empower couples to talk more openly about pregnancy before their 12-week scan, in an effort to break the silence around miscarriage. There had been a shift in the conversation after Scotland’s first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, revealed she had had a miscarriage. Now the Duchess of Sussex’s honesty would have a profound impact.
We hope people will listen to the Duchess advice. If we hear someone has had a miscarriage, ask if they are OK and tell them you are sorry for their loss. They will know that you care.