I stumbled across this story today about a woman who is suing Scotland’s largest health board over claims she was sectioned after wrongly being diagnosed with paranoid psychosis after suffering a miscarriage.
Part of the reason I want to raise awareness of pregnancy and baby loss is that I believe there is a strange lack of knowledge within healthcare providers. Many of them are unaware of the real affect that miscarriage has and seem cold and insensitive. I know that they must have to desensitise themselves as they deal with it on a day to day basis, but surely they should acknowledge that it is an incredibly traumatic event both physically and mentally. I don’t know the whole story of Mrs Muir, in Scotland, but I can well imagine how the events unfolded. I remember going to see my doctor a week after my 2nd miscarriage as I was feeling really ill and tired all the time. I asked her if she thought I’d gone back to work too early. She replied that I would have to tell her that. She offered to sign me off work if that’s what I was looking for. I wasn’t looking to skive off work, I just wanted to feel better. Surely she should have recognised it as a cry for help. I couldn’t see a way to stop feeling like I was feeling and I naturally thought my doctor could help me. Her apparent insensitivity made me feel worse than when I went in. If only she’d said “I understand that you’re feeling fragile at the moment and the way you’re feeling is a physical manifestation of your mental state. If you want to talk to someone then you could try contacting the Miscarriage Association, or I could refer you for counselling”.
The fact that Claire Muir was sectioned when most likely just suffering post natal depression following her miscarriage just goes to illustrate the taboo and misunderstood nature of the mental state of a woman after what is an incredibly traumatic event.
I know that I still struggle with depression day to day. I fight with myself to not hate every pregnant woman I see. Luckily under the care of Gowri Motha and her team I have been able to forgive my body and move forward. I can look at a pregnant woman and see it as a positive affirmation saying to myself “it will be me soon”.
To read the full article about Claire Muir follow this link to the BBC News website.