This in an article I find interesting and would be glad to receive comments on. I will be starting next month a blog discussing issues affecting women and their legal rights.

Women aren’t meant to talk about miscarriage. But I’ve never been able to keep a secret – By Hadley Freeman

Because of this silence, people don’t realise how traumatic it is – until it happens to them. I certainly didn’t

Last Friday, on a bright blue day, I took a train to south-west London. If you never go that way, and I generally don’t, I recommend it as a pleasant day trip: all those green spaces and cute patisseries and shops that only sell wraparound cashmere cardigans. I did not have time to linger, though, as I needed to get back to the office. But first I had to pick up a bag of ashes so small I could have put it in my jeans pocket.

Last month I had a miscarriage. I’d gone in for a scan that morning – another bright blue day – excitedly expecting to find out the gender of the baby. “Let’s see what we have,” the technician smiled. Unable to understand what I was looking at on the screen, I instead watched her face and I knew at once, as surely as you know the sound of a door slamming shut.

My doctor sent me straight to the hospital. “But I have a column to write,” I said.

He explained that the baby would have to be taken out of me. “This is really not how today was supposed to go,” I tried to say, but started to cry instead.

A few hours later, I was lying on a trolley, waiting for the drugs to take effect. I realised I was in the same room where I’d had an abortion 15 years earlier. “And people say biology doesn’t have a sense of humour,” I thought as the drugs hit.

Before I went under, a nurse asked me what I wanted “to be done with it”.

I didn’t understand and said so.

“Do you want us to dispose of it or do you want it to be cremated?”

People are horrified when I tell them this detail, and they are even more horrified when they hear that, three weeks later, I had to go to a crematorium to pick up the ashes of the baby that never was.

This is because a miscarriage is supposed to be forgotten, ignored, never spoken about again, except maybe in a whisper with another woman who has just gone through it, and only once you have healthy babies yourself, so that there is a reassuring happy ending to the tale.

By , Courtesy of Guardian News & Media Ltd

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