By sharing her miscarriage tattoo, this woman is helping others heal and tell their stories
One of the hardest parts of miscarrying is talking about it afterward. Often, women are made to feel they should move past their grief quickly, especially if it was an early loss. But what a lot of people don’t realize is how healing it can be for a mom to talk about her miscarriage openly. That’s why one woman decided to mark her loss with a miscarriage tattoo as a way of opening up the conversation. And as a bonus, it’s also helping other women to talk about their miscarriages.
Joan Bremer explains to Today how she chose to remember the child she miscarried. Through a beautiful tattoo. “It took about three days to recover, and during that time I thought of getting a tattoo to mark this life experience. For me, all the tattoos I have signify something, and even though this was a painful time, I still wanted to be able to remember it in some way.”
After searching online for the right artwork to to capture her grief, Bremer had her tattoo done only days after her loss. She later shared it on Imgur. The results are truly stunning.
Bremer explains her plan for the tattoo when it comes to future pregnancies. “If we are able to carry a baby to term and have a healthy child, I will add a rainbow baby to this design since ‘rainbow babies’ are babies that are conceived after a loss, just like how something beautiful can come after a storm. If I end up having a second miscarriage, I will most likely add another heart to this design.”
After Bremer shared her tattoo on Imgur, it went viral with many women sharing their miscarriage stories in the comments. Of the response, she says, “Losing a baby, even if it’s early in pregnancy, is just so difficult. For me, it was healing to be able to speak about it. I know there is a certain silence about miscarriages and pregnancy losses, but I am not ashamed that this happened to me. That was one of my motivations for getting the tattoo in the first place — I really think it’s healing to be able to talk about it.”
After my miscarriage, I definitely got the vibe from people in my life that there was an expiration date on my grief. In the sense that after a few weeks, they wouldn’t want or expect to hear about it anymore. It’s been over 18 months and when I bring it up now, I can feel palpable discomfort from some family and friends. But as Bremer says, it’s very healing to talk about it. My miscarriage gave me a lot of anxiety because of how it happened and telling people about it and hearing myself say out loud the things I was (and still am) afraid of helps me tremendously.
Though I don’t have plans for any tattoos, I would like to feel that I can talk about my loss whenever I need to. Women like Bremer refusing to stay silent and marking their bodies in a way that people can’t ignore helps all who have experienced miscarriage. There’s no reason for shame or for anyone to feel uncomfortable. If a woman needs to talk about her loss, whether it’s to help her move on or to feel her baby made some kind of mark on the world, people in her life should listen.
As Bremer explains, “It happened to us, and it’s happened to countless other people. I want to be able to share and talk about it, and in talking about it move on from the pain and disappointment.” Making miscarriage less of a taboo is so important to aid in the recovery of those who’ve experienced it. Kudos to this mom for speaking out on behalf of all of us.