Help After Miscarriage: The Role of "Older" Women

In Paul’s letter to Titus, he tells the young pastor (among other things) to have the older women disciple the younger women in his congregation. He then goes on to list the various things that older women are to train younger women in. These commands have become the foundation for countless women’s ministries across the global church. While these imperatives do not cover the variety of practical day to day occurrences in the life of a woman striving for godliness, the general theme of Titus 2 provides a framework for how we are to live.

I have believed the words of Titus 2:3-5 for a while now. And by God’s grace, have worked hard to live accordingly (both as a mentee and mentor). I didn’t realize how much I needed an older woman until after we lost our baby.

God has been so kind to provide countless “older” women in my life, and that sweet blessing has continued in the months since the miscarriage. It hasn’t always been women older than me numerically, but regardless of age, their wisdom from personal experience has been a lifeline for me in recent days. God has ministered to me through women who have walked this road many years prior, or a few months ago. With every conversation (whether a single instance or multiple meetings), I have heard the all-important words, “You will make it through this intact. God will strengthen you. He will keep you. I know, because he kept me.” I needed to hear women say they still cry about their loss. I needed to hear that grief is necessary and doesn’t always have a timetable. But I also needed (and still need) to hear that God will bring me through this.

I remember vividly attending a conference a week and a half after the miscarriage and really struggling with being in a crowd of people, while having to be happy for that long of a period of time (and if you know me, crowds are life-giving to me normally). On two separate occasions God used two older women to cry with me, pray with me, and share in my hurt. These were God appointed times, where these women were obedient to God’s prompting that a hurting sister needed encouragement. Through them, I felt God’s loving care over my dark circumstance. He used them to part the heavy clouds, even if it was only for a short time.

Some women have been more invested in me than others, simply by the nature of our relationship. They are in it for the long haul; asking the hard questions, praying for me regularly, and seeking to encourage me through a common shared experience. One dear friend told me (after talking with me on the phone for almost an hour after we lost the baby), “you have now crossed over into a group of women that is bonded through this loss, even though we would never have chosen it, it bonds us.”

It’s true.

We need Titus 2 relationships regardless of our circumstances. We need people in our lives. But we need them in our lives before tragedy strikes so they can walk through pain with us. If you are an “older” woman, who has experienced a loss (and you are ready emotionally), one of the most influential ways you can help a woman in the aftermath of a miscarriage is to be the “older” woman for her. Cry with her. Listen to her. Empathize with her. Share your story and let her know that she will survive. Your investment matters. God used these women in my life to hold me up. I know he can use you.

Would I have survived without these women surrounding me? Of course. I have an amazing husband, and more importantly, I have an amazing God. But it surely helped. And for that I am eternally grateful.