Supporting dads and partners through miscarriage

Losing your baby at any stage of pregnancy can be extremely difficult. If you are looking at this page, your partner may have had a miscarriage, an ectopic or a molar pregnancy. We are so sorry for your loss.  

If you and your partner had a second trimester loss (also called a late miscarriage) between 13 and 24 weeks of pregnancy, you may find that our information about stillbirth feels more relevant to the way you feel.  

This information is for you if you are a partner affected by miscarriage, ectopic or molar pregnancy. We have some more information for partners about termination for medical reasons (TFMR) here.  

If you have been using a surrogate to have a baby, and they miscarry, you may find it helpful to read this with the page on your feelings after a miscarriage. Neither might feel exactly right, but we hope that you find some helpful information and support on both. Your fertility clinic or surrogacy agency may have suggestions for further support too.  

On this page  

About miscarriage

Your feelings after miscarriage

Your mental health after miscarriage

Other people’s reactions

Miscarriage and your rights at work as a partner

Supporting your partner after miscarriage

Getting more support after miscarriage

Trying to get pregnant again after miscarriage

About miscarriage

You may find it helpful to understand more about miscarriage and why it happens. Our information on types of miscarriage, causes of miscarriage and options and decisions after miscarriage may be helpful. We also have information on physical changes during and after a miscarriage.  

Your feelings after miscarriage, ectopic or molar pregnancy

How you feel about your loss is a very personal thing. It can depend on your individual situation. Your feelings may also change over time.  

You may have been deeply affected by the miscarriage. Or you may feel more removed. Some non-carrying partners do feel less connected, particularly early on in pregnancy. Others feel very connected to their baby and find it upsetting that someone might think otherwise.  

You may be more concerned about your partner than you are about the loss itself. But you might also end up ignoring your own feelings whilst supporting your partner. You may find that health professionals also expect this to be your role.

It may only be some time later, that you allow yourself to feel your own emotions about the loss.  

One of the most overwhelming things about pregnancy is that so much is out of your control. You and your partner can't control when they get pregnant or whether they will stay pregnant.  

Partners often feel this even more strongly. It’s hard to watch someone you care about go through physical and emotional pain, without being able to do much to help.

Some partners feel a sense of failure because of what happened. It is important to know that miscarriages rarely happen because of something you or your partner did or didn’t do.  

Partners, friends and family can be a great support after a miscarriage. But you may prefer to talk to someone else. Have a look at our list of organisations that offer helplines, peer support networks and face-to-face support groups.  

Your mental health after miscarriage

Depression and anxiety

When you’re grieving, depression can be hard to recognise. People who are depressed find it difficult to enjoy anything or be positive about the future. Symptoms of depression can include:  

  • continuous low mood or sadness  
  • feeling hopeless and helpless  
  • feeling anxious or worried  
  • disturbed sleep  
  • avoiding contact with friends  
  • having difficulties in your home, work or family life.  

If these symptoms go on for weeks or months and interfere with daily life, you may need more support.

If you need support after losing a baby, please talk to your GP. They will be able to help you get more treatment or counselling locally. You could also visit Mind for further information and support.  

You should be offered contact with the spiritual care/chaplaincy team if this would be of comfort to you.  


Seeing your partner go through a miscarriage can be traumatic. This can especially be the case if you are not used to seeing large amounts of blood. It may be worse if there was a medical emergency and you were scared for the health or life of your partner.

The way you were treated during the miscarriage can sometimes make it more traumatic too. For example, female partners often talk of being sidelined or excluded. Trans men say that being misgendered or treated differently can make a hard situation even harder.  

It will take you some time to process a traumatic event. You may need additional help. Talk to your GP if you find yourself experiencing symptoms of trauma:

  • regularly re-experiencing the feelings associated with the loss  
  • suffering intrusive or unwanted thoughts  
  • having nightmares or flashbacks  
  • avoiding anything that reminds you of it.

You may also find it helpful to look at our page on grief, trauma and mental health after a miscarriage.

Other people’s reactions

We hope most people will be supportive or try to say something comforting.

But sometimes people say or do upsetting things, usually without realising. For example, you may find that people ask how your partner is feeling, but don’t ask about you. Or they may assume that you aren’t as upset.  

Partners who are not biological parents of the baby sometimes find that people don’t realise they are also affected by the loss.  

Some people may not see a miscarriage, particularly an early one, as something to get upset about. Or they may try and make you feel better by trying to find a positive in the situation.  

You might find it helpful to come up with a simple sentence or two explaining how you feel. You could share our information on supporting someone after a miscarriage.  

If this doesn't feel possible, there are people out there who will understand. Support networks of people who have had similar experiences can help you feel less alone. You may be surprised by how many people you know have been through something similar.

Miscarriage and your rights at work as a partner

You may need time off work to grieve and/or to look after your partner or other live children.  

As a partner, you don’t have a right to leave after a miscarriage at the moment but many employers will offer compassionate, or bereavement leave. Many workplaces have a miscarriage policy and offer paid time off for partners too. It’s worth asking your manager what they have in place. You might also find it helpful to look at our information on miscarriage and your rights at work.  

We offer workplace training for managers in supporting parents going through pregnancy loss or premature birth. This is currently free of charge until the end of 2024. You can sign your employer up here to get information.

On this page, Adam talks about his experience of work after a stillbirth and then a miscarriage.  

Ways to support your partner after miscarriage

  • Encourage them to rest and eat well.  
  • Listen to how they feel, try to understand and let them grieve the way they want to.  
  • Don’t ignore it. It’s tempting to not talk about it if you’re not used to discussing feelings. But it can help to talk. Our page on your relationship after a miscarriage may help.  
  • They may have mood swings and feel tearful, angry and sad. Try not to take things personally right now. People often take out strong feelings on the people they are closest to.
  • Take on more of your share of household responsibilities.  
  • Be aware of the physical impact of miscarriage. Be ready with practical help – such as making sure there is a supply of large absorbent sanitary pads and painkillers.  
  • Talk about making memories together if this is something that you would like to do  
  • Discuss who you both would like to tell, including workplaces, friends and family. Ask whether they would like support from you when telling people.
  • If this is a second trimester loss (late miscarriage) or a recurrent loss, your partner may have follow-up appointments and tests. They are likely to want you to attend too.  
  • Talk to your partner about whether they want to remember and recognise anniversaries such as the baby’s due date.  
  • Be aware that your partner will also have physical changes to deal with. Many women and birthing people struggle with mood swings as their pregnancy hormones fall. Having periods again can also feel difficult. It’s important to be sensitive to this.  
  • Some people have symptoms of depression and anxiety after a miscarriage. These may be new symptoms, or if they already had a mental health problem it may come back or get worse.  
  • Some women and birthing people may also have symptoms of trauma. In some cases they are diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) may also develop or worsen after a loss.  Be aware of the symptoms.
  • You can help your partner find the right support. Have a look at our information on miscarriage and mental health.  

More support for you and your partner after miscarriage

Speak to your GP if you’re struggling to cope or feel you need some support. They can put you in touch with local support services. Some maternity units have bereavement midwives. There may also be a local charity who can offer support.    

You can talk to a Tommy’s midwife free of charge from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday on 0800 0147 800. Email [email protected]. Our midwives are trained in bereavement support.  

You may find it helpful to talk to other parents who have been through something similar. See our page with links to further support.  

 We were surprised to find out how many people close to us had had miscarriages, but we never knew. There’s still a mindset of not talking about it. It wasn’t easy for us at first but in the long-run it really helped us to talk about it.

Trying to get pregnant again after miscarriage

Not everyone will want to try again immediately. Being told to try again might feel like being told to ‘move on’. That is not what we mean to do here. This information is for people who are not sure when or whether to try again.

Decisions about trying again

Deciding together when and whether to try and get pregnant again isn’t always easy.  

Some people who have miscarriage really want to get pregnant again straight away. Others are scared of getting pregnant or worried something might go wrong again.

You and your partner may have been advised to wait before trying to conceive again. This might be really frustrating, or it might feel like the time you need to recover.  

If getting pregnant wasn’t easy, for example if you had fertility treatment or used a surrogate, you may have even more to think about.  

If you and your partner can both carry a child, you may need to have a conversation about who gets pregnant this time. They may really want to be physically pregnant again, or they may not.  

It’s important to keep talking and sharing how you feel. You don’t always have to make a definite decision immediately. If you are finding it hard to have these conversations, Relate may be able to help.

Sex and intimacy  

Some people find sex and intimacy difficult after a loss. This can be the case whether you are trying to conceive or not. You or your partner may not feel ready physically or emotionally. Things might just not feel right. You or your partner may experience vaginal dryness or problems with your erection and ejaculation. 

It helps to talk about it. If it goes on a long time, you may also find it helpful to seek out some counselling.  

Pregnancy after loss 

Pregnancy after a loss can be an anxious time. It can sometimes be harder for the partner as they feel even less in control of the outcome. You may find it helpful to look at our information on pregnancy after a miscarriage and our information for partners on trying again after a loss.  

Farren, J., Jalmbrant, M., Falconieri, N., Mitchell-Jones, N., Bobdiwala, S., Al-Memar, M., Tapp, S., Van Calster, B., Wynants, L., Timmerman, D. and Bourne, T. (2021), Differences in post-traumatic stress, anxiety and depression following miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy between women and their partners: multicenter prospective cohort study. Ultrasound Obstet Gynecol, 57: 141-148. 

Miscarriage, ectopic and molar pregnancy, Bereavement Care Pathway (2022) The National Bereavement Care Pathway, Scotland. Miscarriage | SANDS ( 

Quenby S, Gallos ID et al (2021) Miscarriage matters: the epidemiological, physical, psychological, and economic costs of early pregnancy loss The Lancet 

Overview | Ectopic pregnancy and miscarriage: diagnosis and initial management | Guidance | NICE 

Review dates
Reviewed: 10 January 2024
Next review: 10 January 2027