“I lived it, I chose to do it, and more than anything, these photos aren’t for anyone but the people who have lived this or are curious enough to wonder what something like this is like…”
Please be aware that this article talks about miscarriage in detail and might be sensitive for some readers.
One third of women will suffer from post-traumatic stress following a miscarriage, according to the largest ever study into the impact of early pregnancy loss. And yet, as the split reaction to Chrissy Teigen’s recent photos that she shared after having a miscarriage shows, honest conversations about baby loss can still feel taboo in society. Some people felt shocked and uncomfortable over the photos, while others applauded Teigen for getting real about a traumatic experience that so many women go through.
Teigen has now responded to any criticism in a powerful essay about losing her baby son Jack.
Writing on her Medium account, Teigen details the heartache of losing a baby after being diagnosed with partial placenta abruption. She describes what it was like staying in a hospital for two days, knowing what was about to happen. The model recalls asking her mum and husband John Legend to take pictures, “no matter how uncomfortable it was”.
She explains: “He hated it. I could tell. It didn’t make sense to him at the time. But I knew I needed to know of this moment forever, the same way I needed to remember us kissing at the end of the aisle, the same way I needed to remember our tears of joy after Luna and Miles. And I absolutely knew I needed to share this story.”
Teigin then shares a message for anyone who criticised the photos: “I cannot express how little I care that you hate the photos. How little I care that it’s something you wouldn’t have done. I lived it, I chose to do it, and more than anything, these photos aren’t for anyone but the people who have lived this or are curious enough to wonder what something like this is like.
“These photos are only for the people who need them. The thoughts of others do not matter to me.”
Of course, Teigen absolutely does not need to explain her decision to share her experience. But for anyone who had a problem with the photos, her words are a wake-up call. And, ultimately, the photos were intended to bring comfort to Teigen and the many women who go through baby loss.
No one else’s opinion really matters, but it would be nice to live in a world where women can talk about something so traumatic yet common without judgment.
For support and information on pregnancy loss, please visit Miscarriage Association.