Q&A: How Long Did You Wait Before Trying Again?

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QUESTION

How soon after losing your baby did you wait before trying to conceive again?

ANSWERS

How Long Did You Wait
Don’t make my mistake of trying too soon. I was pregnant again in six weeks and miscarried again 2 months later because it was just too soon. As hard as it is, give your body time to heal.

I started trying after three months, but I didn’t get pregnant again until nine months after my loss. Every month that I didn’t get pregnant, I had to make the decision to try again all over again.


My wife and I are just shy of two months out and are working our way up to starting a new IVF cycle. For us there are obviously a lot more steps involved, so in reality I won’t be pregnant until June at the earliest, and that’s if all goes perfectly. Most doctors in general advise 2-3 cycles before trying though.


We tried again as soon as we were cleared to do so, which was three months past my D&E. As I did the first time, I became pregnant again the first month of trying and my daughter was conceived two months before my son’s due date. For some reason that’s comforting to me. Like, if not for our choice, we wouldn’t have our daughter.


We tried right away. I felt like I needed it at the time. But the pregnancy was hard emotionally. It probably would be at anytime, though.


We started IVF with PGD exactly six months to the day after our termination. It worked, which is good, because we only had enough money for one cycle.


I started trying at three months post loss, but it took me until ten months post loss to conceive. For me, it was hard to get the courage to try again, but once I did it was nice to have something else to focus on. I’m not going to lie though, each monthly “negative” was really disappointing.


I unintentionally got pregnant six weeks after my loss. I wouldn’t recommend it. It was very difficult to allow myself to grieve without feeling guilt that I was distressing my rainbow baby. And I faced every single milestone day that first year feeling like I had to stay even emotionally so I didn’t stress her in the womb.


We started trying two months later and I was a complete disaster every time it came time to take a pregnancy test. I wanted to be excited, but I was just terrified that I would be pregnant and we would have to go through everything again—so we stopped trying. We are now seven months out from the termination and I started all the meds for IVF with PGD yesterday. But we only have enough money for one cycle so if it doesn’t work I’m back to square one.


We met with my RE about two months after, but I had a miscarriage early that next cycle which had started a month or two after that. I ended up needing them to remove tissue so we weren’t ready for another cycle for several months after that. All in all, we conceived our rainbow baby from a cycle about six months after our loss.


I always remember another member’s take on this subject, because she began her subsequent pregnancy at the same time I joined the support group. Seeing her try again and succeed gave me so much hope at the time. She spoke about trying right away and her reasons for it. I won’t speak for her here but, her bravery meant the world to me at the time.


Ladies, don’t make my mistake of trying too soon. I was pregnant again in six weeks and  miscarried again two months later because it was just too soon. As hard as it is, give your body time to heal. That miscarriage was even more awful because I found myself emotionally reliving the loss of my T-21 baby. I waited 4.5 months after the miscarriage, and my soon-to-be-a-college-coed finally arrived.


We are also doing IVF with PGD and also testing an embryo we already have from my angel’s cycle.


I waited about seven months to try again, but as we neared the one year anniversary, I stopped trying for about two months. I conceived about 13 months after the D&E.


I waited five, almost six years! But my circumstances were so different.


I have had several losses (m/c and terminations) and my wait times varied after each loss—sometimes because the doctor suggested a different wait time frame and sometimes because I just needed more time emotionally. There were times when I swore I would never try again. My first loss was an early miscarriage and we tried again right away, but it took six months to get pregnant again. I waited until I had three regular cycles after my first termination, but waited a year and a half after my fifth loss, which was a miscarriage.


At first I wasn’t willing to risk trying again, and was looking into adoption. But at a foreign adoption seminar we attended, the presenter said that the adoption process, which would cost tens of thousands to complete, was also “About as stressful as a high-risk pregnancy.” I leaned over to my husband and whispered “High-risk pregnancy? We can do that–for free.”


I’m nearly eight weeks out and I’m dying to try again. I just haven’t felt like myself lately. I was so happy when I was pregnant.


Having done a bit of research on adoption, both domestic and international, there are so many misconceptions about the difficulties, the cost, the uncertainties. We get this spiel a lot, since we are a same-sex couple needing to undergo IVF. It frustrates the hell out of me. Adoption is not that easy, and furthermore, it is not for everyone.


Our perinatologist recommended waiting six months for mental health reasons but told us there was no physical reason to wait. We started trying immediately and conceived my first rainbow baby three months later. It was a very stressful pregnancy, but I don’t think waiting longer would have made it easier.


I hear you and feel exactly the same. I am dying to get back to my “happy place”… I feel as if I’m in limbo. Honestly, one of the only things keeping me going is this thought that I can get there again. If you need to be doing something, maybe you can start “working towards” your rainbow baby. I’ve been taking supplements, going to acupuncture, doing all kinds of (probably silly and far-fetched) things, just because I need to be doing something to move forward.


We waited 6 months. I had many miscarriages over the years and I said I thought I had one more try in me despite being scared as hell. If I wasn’t close to 40 I may have waited a little longer, although it was hard to not want to dive right in.

I know many women have babies after 40, but I felt like six months was the longest I wanted to wait because of my age, and the age difference between my living daughter and a new baby. In hindsight that age difference didn’t matter. I obsessed about that a little and I wished I hadn’t because I now have really internalized that two healthy kids makes us very lucky. So forget the age difference between your kids.

I was very lucky to get pregnant on the first try and we now have our five-month-old rainbow baby. I wouldn’t change a thing, obviously. However, I do believe the pregnancy interrupted my grief since I became so focused on a healthy pregnancy. It was not uneventful, so the fear and trying not to stress for the baby took every bit of focus I had. Although I thought about my angel boy so much, I do feel that my grief work was sidelined.

I am now back in therapy and working through where I think I left off. I know I felt the most relieved receiving feedback from women in our support group during my subsequent pregnancy. 

I did acupuncture too, and I really felt it got my cycles back to normal very quickly and helped with the grief and stress. If you can afford it (not usually covered by insurance) I definitely recommend.


Our doctor told us we could try again after two normal cycles. I thought I’d be ready but I’m feeling it’s not time yet. I think my body and emotions still need some healing time.


I think it’s important to mention that there is no right or wrong time that fits for everyone. You have to do what’s right for you, your family, your body and your mental health. I’d also gently and lovingly mention that a subsequent pregnancy doesn’t bring you automatically back to the happy stage of pregnancy. (At least not in my experience or for many of those I’ve been witness to.) It is often fraught with echoes of the previous pregnancy, stress, triggers, and the loss of that blissful naivete we had before this knowledge of all that can go wrong. Whenever it is you choose to try again, be kind to yourself and your body. Every pregnancy is different, even when it goes perfectly well.


Even after a year, when I just knew that I was pregnant with my rainbow baby, I was sobbing. I didn’t really ever let myself get excited. It wasn’t until after my second anatomy scan that my mom finally made me go shopping for maternity and baby stuff. (I had been having to unbutton/unzip my pants at work!) It took everything I had to not be a complete mess. I don’t think there is ever a right time.


A member here told me that getting pregnant again was somewhat like a soldier coming back from war with PTSD and getting redeployed immediately. I completely understand the yearning to get pregnant sooner rather than later, but the flip side of that is being prepared for the intense fear, anxiety, flashbacks and trauma it can trigger. It is clear from everyone’s responses that everyone has their own timelines.


I don’t want to scare anyone here, so read at your own risk. I have lived through six pregnancies, and I have two living children. So four of my pregnancies were losses: three miscarriages and my late termination.

During my miscarriage phase, I waited two months after each loss. If I had to do it again, I would wait longer. I received conflicting advice during that time, everything from “You can start trying right away,” to “Wait at least three cycles before trying to conceive.” Maybe I was just unlucky, but if I had to do it all over again, I would wait for at least three periods before I tried again with a first or early second-trimester loss. For a late loss, I think the body needs a lot more time to heal and recover well enough for the safest maternal experience.

I lost my daughter much, much later into my pregnancy. I was nearly full term. Because I was not even 30, my doctor advised me to wait longer. He told me that he thought it would take six months to a year minimum to recover physically and emotionally to try again. I did not feel ready at six months. I felt ready at nine months. I got pregnant right away and had a healthy (though emotionally grueling) pregnancy that resulted in my daughter who is now 6-months.

I am not a doctor, so what I’m saying here is only my own comfort levels and my own personal feelings. But from my own experience, I would always err on the side of waiting rather than rushing a subsequent pregnancy. I remember how urgently I wanted to be pregnant again after my first miscarriage. I remember what it felt like to have my heart set on a big family with kids spaced close together. With every loss, I had to let go of that dream a little bit more, until, finally, there was just no way that my children would be spaced anywhere near each other. That was very hard for me to accept.

On the other side of it, I have grown to love the spacing of my children. If I do ever try for a third living child, I’m going to space that one at least four years apart, too, because I adore this big gap so much. Besides, I was pregnant or breastfeeding or recovering from pregnancy loss for about six years straight. I think I’ve earned a break!


I think it’s also worthwhile to remember that not everyone can easily get pregnant. One of the reasons I want to try sooner rather than later is because I have diminished ovarian reserve. If not for that, or if not for the fact that my wife and I have to go through IVF which is a time-intensive process, sure, things would be different. I realize I’m the outlier here, though, and overall I agree with the sentiment that waiting is generally better.


This is such a personal thing because it depends on the body and the mind and the family that you’re dealing with. There are a lot of good reasons that someone might decide to start trying ASAP.


It has been seven weeks today, and we started trying last week. I hope it happens.


I waited two months after my first D&C (blighted ovum), I waited six months after my termination. I was 23 weeks along, I needed time to heal physically and emotionally, and honestly, it took me six months to have the emotional strength to face it all again. I lost that one at 12 weeks and am done for good now.


My OB told me at my six-week check up after the loss that physically we can start trying straight away, but to also consider whether I was emotionally ready. We did start straight away and it took three or four cycles for me to fall pregnant. Each month that I wasn’t pregnant was difficult.

Like others have expressed, I just wanted a baby back inside of me. I never admitted it at the time, but I think I just wanted to at least be pregnant by the due date so that the day wouldn’t be as difficult…

It’s such a personal decision. I ended up falling pregnant before the due date and while of course I was worried throughout the pregnancy, I think I would have worried the same amount no matter how far away from my loss I was.


I feel the same way. I just want to be pregnant before my due date (which is June). My OB gave me the go ahead.


I feel the same way about my due date, which is mid July. Looks unlikely for us though


I think a lot of us probably felt that way, that impending due date is so scary as is it is… Wish I had some words of wisdom.


My “wisdom” FWIW on due dates and subsequent pregnancy is that the due date may be freighted with enough emotional weight without the added pressure (and potential disappointment) of a conception goal.


Two years in a row I tried to get pregnant before my due dates. Two years in a row I did… Two years in a row I miscarried right near the due dates.


It’s such a relief to read these comments! We started trying after my first normal cycle post-loss and conceived three months post-loss. I sometimes feel judged for not waiting longer. I get the feeling that people think our loss didn’t matter to me because we wanted to get pregnant again. But I felt that I could never put a time-limit on our grief. I couldn’t say “in six months or a year I’ll be ‘over’ the loss of my daughter.” I knew that I would carry that grief in some way and in some form for the rest of my life. So we chose to continue our lives in parallel—living our lives day to day, growing our family—but allowing ourselves to love and mourn our baby girl at the same time. The reality is though that subsequent pregnancies are hard and emotionally fraught. I’m learning to accept that this is normal, not pleasant, but normal for us.


 

 

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