My husband and I had a good conversation this week. I asked him several questions to better understand his perspective on the last few years of our lives. He chose a few parts of our conversation for me to share in this post. We pray it is a source of encouragement for people who have experienced miscarriage and for couples who have dealt with other unexpected events in their time together.
I’ll share the first half of the post this week.
1. What are some ways you think dealing with the miscarriages strengthened our marriage?
Communication. We had to learn how to give each other the freedom to grieve in our own ways. We had to learn more about how the other expresses feelings and not be uncomfortable or threatened by it.
Our commitment to each other was strengthened as we took time to learn how to listen and to understand the other’s fears and insecurities about what happened. We accepted them, worked through them, and reaffirmed our commitment to each other.
2. What was difficult in our marriage after the miscarriages?
Learning how to express grief over not having more children, while at the same time reassuring you that just because I have that grief, doesn’t mean I love you less, blame you in any way, or think of you as less of a person. I think you tried to take my grief upon yourself. You interpreted it as if you had ruined a dream for me and that you weren’t able to “give me what I want.” That is not true. I wanted a life with you and I still do, even though it turned out differently than we thought it would. You said that I didn’t “sign up for this” but the thing is I signed up and that is what matters. I don’t think of our situation as you limiting my life. I think of the miscarriages as part of our story. No one has any clue what the future holds, but you are the person I want to walk into the future with. I thought having children would be an extension of the love I have for you, but if we don’t have more children it doesn’t lessen the love I have for you.
3. Do you think we’ve been able to identify issues from the miscarriages and deal with them well?
Daniel: Yes. I think you have grown in understanding of my love for you. That is ongoing for both of us. You are coming to understand that I didn’t want children with just anyone; I wanted them with you, as an extension of our love and part of our life together. I take it as a difficult reality and a loss for both of us; grief we share. I don’t think of this grief as something you caused. It’s part of our shared life together.
Me: Because my uterine anomaly is the reason we can’t have more children, everything you’ve just said has taken me a long time to understand. You see this as a loss we share together and an unexpected turn of events in our story. Not as something that is “my fault” because of an issue I’ve had since birth. What you felt was a deep grief. A difficult loss. And it’s our loss, not just yours because of my body’s issues. We’ll share that part of our story together. One reason I think it took me so long to understand your feelings in this area was because when I found out about my uterine anomaly that causes recurrent miscarriages, I experienced insecurities about my self worth. Someone once told me that marrying a woman and later finding out she had “problems” would be like buying a car that looked great on the outside, but then finding out it was broken on the inside. I wondered if this is how you felt about me. I was afraid, but when I was willing to accept truth from God about who I am to Him, I was brave enough to be vulnerable with you about these fears. When I could have faced the most painful rejection I’ve ever known, I received unconditional acceptance and love from God and you. None of this changes the losses or my inability to carry children well, but this sort of extravagant love from God and you allows us to thrive in the reality of our situation. It allows us to fully enjoy the deep, real commitment and life we share together.
©2018Chrissy Winslow – All Rights Reserved
More of this post next week.
Thanks for reading!
❤ , Chrissy
- To read the first post my husband and I worked on together, see Men & Miscarriage, under the Miscarriage Category of my blog.
- https://www.huffingtonpost.com/…/4-ways-to-really-hear-your-spouse_us_57a478f4e… This article has some ideas for listening in marriage. I don’t think following it’s 4 steps will fix every problem, but I appreciate the author’s advice. I saw that some changes Daniel and I have tried to make in our conversations together are reflected in her writing. Especially body language and facial expressions– tough ones for me. (4 Ways to Really Hear Your Spouse, Huff Post)