For every woman feeling melancholy about the royal baby news.

When what you feel about the Royal Baby isn’t what you expected. This is for you.

Today is a happy day. A joyful day. A new baby has been born (many new babies actually but one especially famous one) and that’s always a happy day.

The first pics: The Duchess and Duke leave the hospital with the new baby princess.

Except when it’s not. While the world celebrates and the media goes into an almost hysterical orbit over the birth of the royal baby, there are some women who will not be feeling joy today. Instead, they may be secretly feeling sad or inadequate or envious or a complex cocktail of melancholy they don’t even know how to articulate.

They may also be feeling quietly and profoundly ashamed. Ashamed that their bodies have not been able to make a baby or sustain a baby or successfully deliver a baby. Ashamed that they’ve never been able to hold a beautiful, pink, warm newborn while swathed in hospital sheets and bathed in heady congratulations. Compounding this even further is the shame that they feel somehow flat and disconnected from the global celebration over the royal baby news.

It’s a lonely, difficult place to be and we wanted to share this post because we know so many women who will be feeling this way today. Many of them are close to me and struggling with infertility or IVF or grieving the loss of a newborn or miscarriage.

The wonderful Bec Sparrow wrote about the following piece when Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge’s, first pregnancy was announced and she articulated this feeling beautifully and sensitively:

Bec Sparrow previously wrote:

When you’re desperately trying to conceive or have suffered a stillbirth or neo-natal death, the news of someone else’s pregnancy or birth can feel like a sucker punch.

And while I’m not in that headspace now, I have been. Boy, have I been.

Bec with her son Fin.

A month or so after my daughter Georgie was stillborn in 2010, Nicole Kidman announced the arrival of her daughter Faith Margaret.  And I was devastated.  Nicole didn’t realise but she and I had been on the same road.


In my head we were walking it together.  She married Keith a few months before I married my husband Brad in 2006. She had Sunday Rose a few months before I had my daughter Ava.

And now she was announcing the arrival of her second daughter, Faith, while I was holding my second daughter’s ashes in a pewter heart in my hand.

More on Bec’s heartbreak: Some advice for the friends and family of Ada Nicodemou.

‘This is not how it is meant to go,’ I sobbed to a friend over the phone. ‘Now Nicole has moved away, ahead of me and I’m left standing here. I’m left behind.’

It makes no sense, I know.  It sounds stupid and trivial and petty. And it wasn’t about Nicole at all. Of course. But these are the feelings that flood you when you have lost a child. Envy and bitterness sometimes set up camp in your mind. Along with despair.

When you are longing for a child of your own there are times when you feel like you are being haunted by other people’s babies.  Cards with storks delivering pretty pink bundles.  Booties. Baby showers. And ‘baby bump’ magazine covers. And for thousands of people yesterday (and today and for the 7 months ahead) the media’s obsession with Kate and Will’s baby will strangle their hearts rather than prompt star jumps and somersaults. It’s not at all that you don’t wish them joy, it’s just, well, a reminder of what you are missing yourself.

So to all of you who are in that headspace, I am thinking of you and sending you love. I have been where you are.  I get it.

From Mia: What it’s like to lose a baby.

What you need to know is that you’re not alone.  Your feelings are normal. And I am wishing for you everything I could wish for myself.

And that goes for the Duchess of Cambridge too.

Do you have mixed feelings about the birth of the second royal baby?