Supporting your partner after baby loss - for dads and partners

Everyone reacts to grief differently and you and your partner may show your feelings in different ways. Being open and honest with each other can help you accept and cope with those differences.

Everyone reacts to grief differently and you and your partner may show your feelings in different ways. Being open and honest with each other can help you accept and cope with those differences.

Grieving together

You may be wondering how to support your partner while they are grieving. You may try to protect your partner by giving them space to grieve or taking on tasks such as telling family and friends about your loss. But be careful not to tire yourself out. Try to accept help from others when you can to give yourself time to grieve.

Try to keep talking to your partner about how you both feel. You may be worried about saying the wrong thing or upsetting them. But they may sense that you’re struggling and want you to be honest about your feelings. Read more about coping with grief after baby loss.  

If you and your partner are coping in different ways, it can lead to misunderstandings and arguments. You might be tempted to avoid the situation, for example, by spending more time at work or doing hobbies. One of you may feel ready to move on before the other. Accepting these differences can help you both talk honestly about how you’re feeling.

Read more about supporting each other after losing a baby.

Sex after loss

Losing a baby can put a lot of pressure on your relationship. It may take time for your partner to be physically and emotionally ready to have sex again. Sometimes, one partner might be ready before the other. Talking together and being kind to each other can help you find out what worries you both have. For example, you may be worried about your partner getting pregnant again.

Read more about trying to get pregnant after baby loss.

Getting support

Talking to family and friends can help. But sometimes they might find it hard to understand how you’re feeling or they may be grieving themselves. Talking to others who have been through similar experiences can give you the chance to speak honestly about your loss. Our baby loss support group is a safe place for members to share their feelings without judgement.

You can also talk to a Tommy’s midwife for free. You can call them on 0800 0147 800, 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday or email them at [email protected]

If you feel you need some extra support, you may want to think about counselling, either as a couple or individually. Your GP can tell you what counselling services are available.

You can also contact organisations such as the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) and Relate for details of counsellors. 

More support and information

  1. Due C, Chiarolli S, Riggs DW (2017) The impact of pregnancy loss on men's health and wellbeing: a systematic review. BMC Pregnancy Childbirth 2017; 17(1): 380.
  2. Williams HM et al (2020) Men and Miscarriage: A Systematic Review and Thematic Synthesis. Qual Health Res. 2020; 30(1): 133-145.
     
Review dates
Reviewed: 15 June 2022 | Next review: 15 June 2025