Infertility Fact: As many as 50% of all pregnancies end in miscarriage – most often before a woman misses a menstrual period or even knows she is pregnant. About 15-25% of recognized pregnancies will end in a miscarriage (March of Dimes).
Infertility Awareness: Infertility and miscarriage are often intertwined. For some couples, factors related to their infertility may allow them to conceive, but result in an unhealthy pregnancy that ends in miscarriage. Sperm abnormalities, endometriosis, endometritis, polyps, and low progesterone, among other conditions, can all contribute to the loss of a child in a miscarriage. Couples who experience both infertility and child loss may grieve their fertility differently than couples who have never conceived.
Action Item: Couples who have lost a child or children in miscarriage may not feel “counted” as parents in their communities, but they deserve recognition of both their parenthood and their grief. Make a point of letting others know that you recognize the parenthood of couples who have lost children, and that you recognize the spiritual parenthood of those who long for children. Particularly on occasions like Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, this recognition can bring great comfort and validation to couples who have miscarried children or who experience infertility.