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What Happens to My Miscarried Child's Soul?

What Happens to My Miscarried Child's Soul?

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Question:

I recently had a miscarriage. I was told that my baby died on week eight. I am still emotionally broken and suffering a lot. This was my first child. Can you please help me understand what happens to my unborn child's soul? Why do you think G‑d allowed this to happen to me? How can I overcome this terrible episode and carry on with my life?

Answer:

I am so very sorry to hear of your loss. I know firsthand how painful and scary it can be. Especially considering that this was your first pregnancy, there is no question that there is nothing harder then when that happens. I know. My first pregnancy also ended in miscarriage at about 11 weeks and I suffered another miscarriage as well. Fortunately, I am very blessed to have four healthy and beautiful children, but each pregnancy was a story all of its own.

From a spiritual point of view, I learned the most beautiful teaching from my rabbi, Rabbi Yitzchak Ginsburgh. He told me that every soul that comes into this world comes here with a very specific mission. When that mission is completed, the soul can leave. The holiest of souls need so little time here in this world that some never even make it outside the womb, others only need their heart to beat once, others not even that.

We cannot understand G‑d's ways, but when we believe that everything happens for a reason and that nothing is random, hopefully that will help the grieving process.

Clearly, we want healthy children and easy pregnancies. But for whatever reason, certain souls do not need to come into this world, and both you and I, for whatever reason, carried such souls.

We have a number of articles on the site that I think you will find helpful and supportive during this time. Please read through the section on Fertility Problems and Loss. In that section there is a piece I wrote about my experience called: "The Empty Sac."

Please let me know if I can be of further assistance. I found that knowing I was not alone, and learning that unfortunately early miscarriage is quite common, and seeing so many women who had miscarried go on to have healthy pregnancies and birth, gave me tremendous strength. I hope it does for you as well.

You may also want to take on a spiritual commitment in memory of this baby, so that you will always have something positive and everlasting. A beautiful mitzvah is the lighting of Shabbat candles. I am not sure if you already do this or if you would like more information about it. But bringing more light into this world is very powerful, especially when we feel surrounded by our own darkness.

If you are already lighting Shabbat candles, take upon yourself something else like baking challah or another mitzvah.

Anyway, I have given you quite a reading list. I do hope you find it helpful. May you be blessed with strength during this difficult time and may you soon have a beautiful baby to enjoy!

Take care,

Sara Esther Crispe,
Editor, TheJewishWoman.org

“Dear Rachel” is a bi-weekly column that is answered by a rotating group of experts. This question was answered by Sara Esther Crispe.

Sara Esther Crispe, a writer, inspirational speaker and mother of four, is the co-director of Interinclusion, a nonprofit multi-layered educational initiative celebrating the convergence between contemporary arts and sciences and timeless Jewish wisdom. Prior to that she was the editor of TheJewishWoman.org, and wrote the popular weekly blog Musing for Meaning. To book Sara Esther for a speaking engagement, please click here.
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sacha June 14, 2017

I miscarried so early in my first pregnancy that I didn't even know I pregnant to begin with. Because my period came unusually painful and heavy i was advised to take a test and it came out faintly positive. I got pregnant again just about two months after and was very happy because we had an ultrasound done so i knew for sure a life was in me. Unfortunately at 9 wks there was no longer a heartbeat but the baby had grown perfectly up to that point. I was devastated! That was five years ago and I now have been blessed with two boys ages 5 and 3. But to be honest not a day goes by that I don't think about the first two i lost. I still grieve for them and wish I had all four together with me. I feel like my family is still incomplete without them but I believe they are in heaven and pray that we will be together as a complete family in heaven one day. Reply

Anonymous April 25, 2015

Although I am not Jewish, but am grateful for this post/thread. My only pregnancy ended in miscarriage several years ago. I still think of my child, who would have turned nine this month. People sometimes make hurtful remarks without realizing they are. That happened today. Your shared explanation of the unborn soul was a great comfort. Reply

Lisa Providence, RI February 5, 2014

Miscarried Child's Soul I was taught to believe G-d made us for a reason, but I, myself, still don't know why I'm here. I may never know why. When I think of miscarriages and deceased children, I get sad and confused, not knowing why it happened, but reading this article gave me a better understanding of life itself. Reply

Anonymous October 28, 2013

frame of mind I had embryo with no heartbeat at 15 weeks & had D&E. It was there prior at 12 weeks and grew to true size. It was very shocking and emotional. I decided right then & there to cry over it, and get past it. True - it was not my first child, but nevertheless it hurt. However, I will not destroy my happy inner being over something we have no control over. I tell myself- it was not meant to be a healthy baby- and it was for good. I also know (& read) miscarriages are extremely common. We appreciate a healthy baby preceding that mis, and I no longer mourn that loss. Reply

Anonymous May 22, 2013

asking support prayer from all of U, so God will bless me again healty baby in this year, thanks. I had complete natural misscarriage at 6 weeks & 5 days, it's our second baby.I'm so sad that time, but many times I pray, I feel better, strong again, & have hope & faith in God.Thanks for this site, I could share my feelings, & learn from all your expetience's, God bless all of you. Reply

Anonymous New Jersey November 13, 2012

Thirty Years Later It is strange and wonderful that I found this website quite by accident on the 30th anniversary of a miscarriage I had. I was so deeply hurt by it and confused, that I had something of a mental breakdown and had to be hospitalized for a week. While I was in the hospital I felt inundated with grief and asked several people if they thought my baby was in heaven. They all replied yes. As I write this I am sobbing as if it just happened. The babies we lost are still and always will be our beloved children. I thought I would never get over the loss, but somehow I did get through and went on to have 2 more beautiful children. The children we carried and ultimately lost will forever be a part of us, and we will be reunited with them one day. I pray that everyone who has lost a baby will find peace, and for those who are not parents yet, that they will be very soon. Love, Kate Reply

Anonymous Tamworth, Ontario, Canada February 27, 2012

THE SPIRITUALITY OF MISCARRIAGE My son and his wife just suffered a miscarriage. I am deeply moved by Crispe's entry and those of others.
I am concerned that in our culture, fathers are not cared for enough. I pray more folks will attend to tem as well as to the moms. Reply

DD Netanya, Israel July 5, 2011

mscarried 7 weeks How excited I was,pregnant again,after the previous miscarriage,I felt in my heart all was fine this time round.My children were excited,esp Josh,who was excited having a baby in the house.Went to Gynysaid I was at 7 weeks,but no heartbeat,just started sobbing,why again, started speaking to Hashem, "how can you do this again"to feel this pain in my heart again,what do I tell my huby, children.I believed all ok,even though I knew G-d had his reason, his was no consolation.Gyny said small chance of heartbeat in a week. So there was hope.So for a few days I hoped.Started miscarrying at my job of 2 weeks,It was awful, phoned huby, I could not believe this, hope was gone,ended shift 3 hrs later,I was in denial,went to hosp. did D&C,that was that, no more hope, felt so alone,wanted to get back to wrk, 24hrs later back at work, I was fine for 1st hr, then grief took over,back hurt,not coping,the manager sent me home, he instisted I take time off - now I had to be at home and THINK- what now? Reply

Anonymous dartmouth July 4, 2011

No heartbeat, no closure I can relate so much to this post, and it helps to read that others understand what I am going through. I had my first pg mc this year at 9w6d but had found out our angel was not developing after 7/8w. I never got to find out if it was a girl or boy, never got to hear their heartbeat. I always had this feeling she was a girl, and it helps for me to think of her that way - even named her maria faith. I feel so damn horrible because I am very young, and when I found out I was pg I did not want to be a young mother, didn't take care of myself and didn't go to my docs immediately. I would give anything to take all that back. Even though I did not get to hear/feel my baby, I loved her and will love her until I die. I am so glad I could find this, it helps to know that even though she was not "born" that she is still a baby and is considered one; many would disagree because I did not hear her heartbeat, but I will always see her as my baby. Reply

Maggie Madison, WI March 23, 2010

I believe a soul enters the body right as the body enters this world at birth. I know this may be hard for you, but I think your child's soul has not found its body yet... Reply

Michael Ackerley Papakura, NZ July 7, 2008

Our unborn children. Dearest Kelly, our Rachel will know us when we meet again. It is a high and holy calling we have to love, love and to love again...I used to wake at night wondering about someone who was not home and in bed, someone was missing....even though our other three children were tucked in. Kelly, love never fails... Reply

Kelly Rae Sydney, AU April 8, 2008

To Michael Many years ago I lost my firstborn at term. He was a beautiful boy, perfect, but stillborn.

Nobody knew him but me. I had him growing inside of me and although others could put their hand on my belly and feel his kicks, I already felt that I was beginning to know his little personality and his ways. I knew which parts he liked rubbed and knew what types of music he would wake to, how he would be startled at a loud noise if he was awake and one happened.

You are such a kind young man to realise that there is no way you can truly 'feel' what a mother goes through. However, I know that you suffer as well. You suffer since you have lost the future you and your wife had planned with your expected baby and you suffer since you have seen your wife's suffering.
Thank you for your kind words. I am sure that you and your wife will be blessed in the future and may you have a gentle baby to help ease both of your pain.

My heart goes out to both you and your wife
Reply

Michael Ackerley Papakura, New Zealand April 5, 2008

Man's inability to cope with miscarriage. With sobbing heart I look back at Pauline my young wife, and how I did not understand the stresses she went through when Rachel was miscarried. As a young man, please girls forgive us, for our inability to love and comfort you at the time of this tragic event. When I came to G-d this wounded heart was healed and I am now able to carry a little of your suffering. Pauline was sent home by her Doctor with Rachel still and silent...it makes me cry. Loved ones you do not walk alone. Michael in NZ. Reply

Anonymous April 3, 2008

miscarriage Dear Hurting Woman, There is no replacement for loss, but I found a healing in time. When I had a first pregnancy miscarriage, I felt dead inside and a sorrow that equaled nothing I ever felt. The death is seldom acknowledged like a live born's and as each soul is unique no other can fill that hole in one's heart but God. I named my child and commened "her" to God. Reply

Anonymous Papakura, NZ March 15, 2008

Our children's souls. Dear one, Our unborn childen's souls are back with the Father in Heaven. We lost a girl named Rachel to miscarrige. I was in my garage and sense her presence, some how I knew it was her. She wanted my love I said 'I love you but you must go back to your Father in heaven. We will see her again.... Reply

Kelly Rae Syndey, Australia October 30, 2007

MIscarried Souls - Still Our Children If life begins at conception then the child you carried was truly a living soul, a living being.

Even King David declared that while still in his mother's womb, Ha'Shem knew all of his parts!

I believe in the resurrection. It is my hope and the promise from our creator. No more of this wicked mess that we have been left with. That perfect paradise, an Eden greater than the original, will be the home of you and your children, the ones who have passed before you, your current, and your future ones. {read the second blessing of Amidah and Maimonides' 13th principle of faith}

According to Ecc 12:7, I feel that like all of creation, we die and go back to the ground, yet the spirit,or life-force of the dead go back to our G-d. {see also Ps. 146:3-7}

Ha'shem will not forget you. Surely he feels your pain. We live in a difficult world and as any 'parent' he suffers with us. {Zec. 2:8}

II do not pretend to be an expert. I only read a lot and have faith. If you find fault with my reasoning, please correct me. I am always willing to learn the truth.

I do know one thing, though. Without Moshaic, we will never have peace of any kind on this earth. May he come soon.

My you find peace, hope and faith deep in your burdened heart.

With love, Reply

bubu yalenga lusaka, zambia September 7, 2007

miscarriage i really wanted to know if there was any prayers said to a miscarriaged baby. i am from zambia in africa and coverted to judaism, 10 years ago this is my first pregnancy and since i never had a chance to see my baby which i lost at 12 weeks i wanted a prayer that i would say for my baby which i named gianina which means G-d is gracious. is there a prayer that i can say,i lost my baby not because i had any complication,went in for a normal scan saw my baby for the first and last time because she didnt have a heart beat she died in my womb then had a D&C.i had to accept that just having a chance to concieve was G-ds blessing but does that also mean its not since HE says that he will bless the fruit of my womb, let me have the clear meaning of all this.
shalom Reply

Kim Paradise, CA September 1, 2007

miscarried child's soul you never really answered the question. Is that because according to The Jewish law (the Kaddish) "since he was taken before he reached the age of one month old, the age at which a life is proven to be viable" no kaddish is necessary??? Whatever happen to Ps. 139? Reply

Alizah Middlebury, VT/USA August 22, 2007

Mscarried baby's soul? How beautifully written...I am sure it has comforted her greatly. I pray she is doing well. Beautiful. Reply

Anonymous israel, israel August 17, 2007

miscarriage Being a woman who experienced six miscarriages (we have, Thank G-d healthy children) I remember learning up on the subject. I recall seeing in the Yalkut Shimoni-a continuation of the famous midrash on Moshiach that the Rebbe quoted time and again-that all souls unorn will also come back at Moshiach's arrival. I remeber announcing to the kids that we had better buy a bigger table...A miscarriage is a blessing in disguise, and I wish the writer undisguised blessings from now on. Moshiach Now! Reply

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