First postpartum Dr’s visit after loss

The following tips and advice were submitted by real women when asked what they wish someone would have told them before going to their first postpartum appointment after losing their baby. The raw, honest truth about what it’s like. If you have advice you’d like to add, please send it to april@facesofloss.com, with ‘real advice’ in the subject line. Thanks!

  • “Ask to be taken to an exam room immediately! I didn’t know I could do that and I had to sit in the waiting room amongst all the pregnant moms and newborns. My first postpartum appointment was 5 days after her birth to have my staples removed so I certainly wasn’t ready to sit with all the happy moms.” -Mary
  • “I wasn’t prepared for them to not ask me anything related to losing my baby. It was a checkup and that was it. Really strange to me that they didn’t bring it up and talk to me about how I was dealing with it.” -Ashley
  • “Bring along a friend or a loved one. Its not a good experience to go through by yourself.” -Josie
  • “I was very unprepared for a pregnancy test, I knew that’s why I had to give a urine sample and watched them do the test and it came up negative was a huge slap in the face!” -Courtney
  • “After my first loss I wasn’t prepared for the receptionist to not know what happened and when I walked in she asked me what I had and was looking around for my baby. Then I had to tell her we lost twins right in front of a bunch of other women.” -Ashley
  • “We took our sweet boy’s picture book with us…. (it only helped a little) but I loved it when my dr asked if she could please post his picture on her wall.” -Mari
  • “The first thing the nurse asked me was “I see you had your son two weeks ago, how is he doing?”" -Amanda

  • “I wasn’t prepared to be asked by the dr. when we were going to start trying again.” -Beryl
  • “Make an appt first thing in the morning or at the very end of the day, when it may be less busy. You can also call ahead and ask that they take you straight back to an exam room, so you don’t have to sit in the waiting room with other pregnant women. I also think you should take a friend or support person with you. We also let our children bake cookies and make thank you notes for the doctors and all the staff that took care of us. It was part of the healing for us.” -Chasity
  • “Do not expect to necessarily have all of your questions answered about the possibility of trying again. We were just recommended to a high-risk specialist OB-GYN and the appointment was over a month later. Not surprising now that we think about it, but we were really looking forward to having those questions answered at that first appointment.” -Jenny
  • “My first apointment was 3 days after losing our son, if it wasn’t bad enough to be in the office surrounded by happy pregnant women, the front desk receptionist asked me if I was still pregnant! As for the actual visit with my doctor she wanted to know what my plans were, birth control or keep trying. Not what I wanted to talk.about. I wish she would have prepared me for my milk coming in. No one told me that was gonna happen or be so painful both physically or emotionally.” -Amy
  • “I wish I had asked for more help. The “I can do it myself” attitude was not helpful for my healing or grief. Ask for help, even if you don’t want to.” -Ida
  • “My first appt was a blur for me. My best advice would be to tell your Dr exactly what you are feeling. Ask all questions of what happened and why. Lean on your Dr. he’s there to help you get through it the best he can. I told my Dr exactly what I was thinking and feeling. I was a little angry with him and I had to tell him.” -Christa
  • “When I called to set up my postpartum appointment, before hanging up the receptionist told me “Congrats!” on the arrival of my twins. That caught me off guard. And I did not know I could ask to be taken back to a room right away when I did go in….sitting in the waiting room filled with pregnant women was torture.” -Trena
  • “I was not prepared for my doctors to call my D&C an abortion. I didn’t choose to lose my baby. It was also hard to get an u/s and know there wouldn’t be a baby on the screen.” -Megan
  • “The waiting room was toture. I was also asked what we wanted to do about birth control. I would suggest having a list of questions you are thinking/want to ask. Ex. When will I get my first period? When can we try again?” -Brooke
  • “We were asked to about how we were going to pay our bill right away… not at our 6 week check up but 7 days after my c section when I went to get my stitches out (2 days after my daughter passed away). We were so out of it that we just put it all on a credit card – now we found out that we have a credit because they overcharged us. If I would have been thinking straight I would have told them that I was going to wait until we heard back from the insurance co.” -Shanna
  • “See if you could be taken to a room other than one you had been seen in during pregnancy. ASK that everyone in the office be informed about your loss before you go in. I was asked by a nurse if I was breastfeeding. Oh also the wall of newborn pictures was horrible. I had to walk right by it. And the birth control subject- my dr. really started pushing morena, and I wasnt’ ready to make that decision yet.” -Mandy
  • “My suggestion is to have a list of things you want to ask. When you make your appointment, ask them to make sure all staff know you have lost your baby/ies. Be up front with the doctor about everything – trying again, your emotions, EVERYTHING! If you don’t speak up, they don’t know.” -Maureen
  • “Expect the nurses and staff who may not know what happened to ask “oh hi! Where’s the baby?!?” stab right in the the gut…” -Kaila

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