Hampshire nurse sets up support service to tackle taboo after 'lonely' miscarriage

Sarah Reynolds experienced her miscarriage in 2022 and said that she couldn’t find a local support network to help her. Credit: Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust

A nurse from Portsmouth has helped to set up a new support group for women who have experienced baby loss or miscarriage after she felt lonely following her own loss.

Sarah Reynolds, Oncology Day Unit Nurse at Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust, experienced her miscarriage in 2022, and said that she couldn’t find a local support network to help her.

30-year-old Sarah struggled to locate face-to-face support, finding online groups impersonal.

Using her experience, she wanted to start a local group for women who have been through similar situations, they can feel about what is often a taboo subject.

With the help of the Early Pregnancy team at Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust, the group will run once a month - starting in June.

It aims to offer a safe space for women who have been through a miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy, molar pregnancy, or medical termination.

Sarah said: “Society expects you to have a miscarriage and then go straight back to work, but people forget that you’re bereaved. People need to know that I’m not going to be okay for a while and that’s why the group is so important.

“I can’t believe how lonely my experience was. Even though my miscarriage was a year for me now, I still have so much unresolved trauma because I had no one to talk to. I think the new group will so be valuable, where we can all share our experiences and not feel so lonely.”

Statistics show that one in four pregnancies will end with a miscarriage, with the chance increasing to one in two for those aged over the age of 40.

Clinical Nurse Specialist Jane Lyndon, from the Early Pregnancy team, added: “This new group will offer women that much needed support and allow them to speak to others in the same situation.

"Miscarriage can be a devastating experience - it is a different kind of loss. This can be hard for others to understand and relate to. Sarah has been instrumental in helping to start the support group."

The monthly group will launch on Wednesday 7 June at Cosham Community Centre. The drop-in informal group sessions will be every first Wednesday of the month between 7pm and 9pm.