Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, in a moving Op-Ed written for the New York Times, she revealed she suffered a miscarriage in July this year, opening up about the deep grief and loss she endured with her husband Prince Harry.
I felt a sharp cramp. I dropped to the floor with him in my arms, humming a lullaby to keep us both calm, the cheerful tune a stark contrast to my sense that something was not right. I knew, as I clutched my firstborn child, that I was losing my second. Hours later, I lay in a hospital bed, holding my husband’s hand. I felt the clamminess of his palm and kissed his knuckles, wet from both our tears. Staring at the cold white walls, my eyes glazed over. I tried to imagine how we’d heal.
Recalling the royal visit she and Harry made in September 2019 to South Africa, she wrote:
I recalled a moment last year when Harry and I were finishing up a long tour in South Africa. I was exhausted. I was breastfeeding our infant son, and I was trying to keep a brave face in the very public eye. ‘Are you OK?’ a journalist asked me. I answered him honestly, not knowing that what I said would resonate with so many — new moms and older ones, and anyone who had, in their own way, been silently suffering. My off-the-cuff reply seemed to give people permission to speak their truth. But it wasn’t responding honestly that helped me most, it was the question itself. ‘Thank you for asking,’ I said. ‘Not many people have asked if I’m OK.’
I answered him honestly, not knowing that what I said would resonate with so many — new moms and older ones, and anyone who had, in their own way, been silently suffering. My off-the-cuff reply seemed to give people permission to speak their truth. But it wasn’t responding honestly that helped me most, it was the question itself.
Meghan says she was sitting in a hospital bed watching her “husband’s heartbreak” when she realized that the only way to heal was to ask herself “Are you OK?”.
In her article, the Duchess of Sussex reflects on how it was heartbreaking to learn just how many women suffer from miscarriages and yet the conversation remains “taboo, riddled with (unwarranted shame)” and “perpetuates a cycle of solitary mourning”.
In the pain of our loss, my husband and I discovered that in a room of 100 women, 10 to 20 of them will have suffered from a miscarriage. Yet despite the staggering commonality of this pain, the conversation remains taboo, riddled with (unwarranted) shame, and perpetuating a cycle of solitary mourning. Some have bravely shared their stories; they have opened the door, knowing that when one person speaks the truth, it gives license for all of us to do the same.
The article ends with: ‘Are we OK? We will be’.