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It took me to a dark place: Georgie Gardner reveals grief over miscarriages

'I still feel sad about it': Georgie Gardner on the ongoing heartache of suffering a miscarriage.

'I still feel sad about it': Georgie Gardner on the ongoing heartache of suffering a miscarriage.

Television news presenter Georgie Gardner has spoken openly about the intense grief she experienced when she suffered two miscarriages while trying for a third child.

The Today show newsreader said she was ‘‘desperately trying’’ to have another baby and the loss that came nine or 10 weeks into her pregnancy took her to a ‘‘very deep and dark place’’.

“It really rocked me, absolutely rocked me. Some women I know have miscarriages and are very accepting and just sort of say 'okay, well that’s nature taking its course' but, my god, it really took me to a very deep and dark place actually,’’ Gardner said in the interview with the Australian website Show and Tell.

The 43-year-old said she found it difficult to move on from the loss and people were often ‘‘ready to dismiss it a bit’’.

“I’m sure at 39 weeks of course it would be a lot harder, it would be a lot more harrowing than nine or 10 weeks, which was what I was,’’ she said. “But it was still a life, and it’s still a dream. It’s the possibility and I guess because I had two I knew what an extraordinary miracle it is and I wanted it so badly,” she said. 

Gardner, who last week announced she was leaving Today after eight years with the breakfast program, said people don’t talk enough about the pain parents feel when they lose an unborn child.

“It’s like divorce, people say divorce is prevalent, well so what? It doesn’t lessen the pain. I think there are a lot of women and men walking around feeling a real ache in their heart about losing babies, I really do and I don’t think it’s discussed enough to be honest,’’ she said.

‘‘It is a shitty thing to go through and I wouldn’t wish it on anyone.

‘‘There is always someone out there who has had a far more painful journey and experience and as I say thank god I already had my two and I’m incredibly lucky. I also think for having had that experience it gives me more insight and compassion for other people and I also also often think to myself maybe I wasn’t going to be able to cope with more.’’

Talking about her decision to stop trying for a third child about a year ago, Gardner wiped away tears and said it was ‘‘still a bit raw’’.

She said she and her partner Tim Baker had decided not to try IVF due to the ‘‘gruelling’’ nature of the process and because they wanted to focus attention on their two children, Bronte and Angus.

‘‘It was probably more of a gradual thing of just sort of slowly coming to the realisation that it wasn’t going to happen,’’  she said.

‘‘I think probably maybe a year ago, I sort of said to Tim ‘I think we have to close that door now’...I still feel sad about it, I still feel sad about it.’’

Gardner told viewers last week that after finishing at Today she would take on a ‘‘broader role’’ at Nine, including contributing reports to the network’s flagship current affairs program 60 Minutes.

22 comments

  • My ex-partner and I went through 9 miscarriages and no kids came out the other side.

    The response from IVF doctors and others? Just keep trying - it will happen. Sorry, but sometimes it doesn't and there are no services or supports out there for women OR men who go through the heartbreak of watching small heartbeats disappear from ultrasound screens on multiple occasions and have to answer insensitive questions from radiologists like, "are you sure you have your dates right?".

    Commenter
    JTHooker
    Location
    Melbs
    Date and time
    June 03, 2014, 10:22AM
    • Nine miscarriages - that's hard for anyone who hasn't been in your shoes to comprehend - I'm so sorry to hear what you had to go through.

      Commenter
      bornagirl
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      June 03, 2014, 10:48AM
    • TJHooker I am so sorry to hear about your loss. It is such a difficult thing to go through emotionally and physically. I lost my baby at 40 weeks, it was devastating and 8 years later although I can now talk about it frankly my heart is still heavy that pain never goes away. I had many comments of ' don't worry you will have another one' I reminded them that I am not a machine and it's easy to say. Having a child and going through that entire process is a very serious thing, and it's not over until it really is over and you have a healthy baby and you are healthy too. I almost died was in a serious condition with severe blood loss. I have been fortunate enough to have a healthy little boy now. That's it for me, I wouldn't place my self under that risk again, going back a second time was emotional enough. There is not enough support for women losing babies, I felt so alone. If it wasn't for my family I don't know what I would have done. TJHooker you are a very brave lady. I admire your strength. God bless..

      Commenter
      TH, Melbourne
      Date and time
      June 03, 2014, 12:11PM
    • There are support services, just not widely advertised.
      Try SANDS:
      http://www.sands.org.au/

      While i have not used them personally, i feel its important for those who need to. My wife and I (yes both of us) have been through 4 miscarriages and 2 failed IVF cycles, and are still coming to terms. Best wishes.

      Commenter
      YeahNah
      Date and time
      June 03, 2014, 12:54PM
  • I agree, JTHooker, and I'm very sorry for your losses, and for Georgie's. I disagree that "many women are very accepting". I think the real story is that they are putting on brave faces and crying into their pillows at night. Having lost 10 babies at various stages and for different reasons, I feel qualified to comment that the experience permanently changes who you are. Resources for helping women are scarce, and others rarely say anything helpful. In my case the physical and emotional scars meant I only just came out the other side of all this. And I agree that while women receive little help and understanding, men are forgotten in the process and are left hurting too. I extend heartfelt cyber-hugs to everyone going through these tragic circumstances.

    Commenter
    Veronica
    Date and time
    June 03, 2014, 10:50AM
    • I find it bizarre in this day of supposed openess that miscarriage is not discussed more, we told lots of our friends that we were pregnant and when we miscarried it was hard to tell people but the love and support was wonderfull and really pulled me through this horrible time. Good on you Georgie for telling your story. Lots of couples think they have to go through this stuff alone but they really don't and given 1 in 4 pregnancies ends in miscarriage we really should have better support networks in place.

      Commenter
      spender17
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      June 03, 2014, 10:54AM
      • Well said. One of the few women who can include men into a distressing health situation. We are all in this together and should help one another to get through these sad times no matter the ailment.

        Commenter
        duds
        Location
        nsw
        Date and time
        June 03, 2014, 11:11AM
        • duds, women are usually more able to discuss personal and sensitive issues with their friends than men are. I think it's vital that men get a chance to discuss their grief rather than bottle it up. Often they are trying so hard to support and protect their partners, who are more visibly affected, and they watch while others come and express their sorrow to only the women. Fatherhood is really important too and men have their own emotions to deal with when they lose a baby. I think these are often left unexpressed, and I feel sad about that. It's OK for BOTH partners to cry.

          Commenter
          Veronica
          Date and time
          June 03, 2014, 11:27AM
      • Thank you so much, Georgie, for saying "I think there are a lot of women and men walking around feeling a real ache in their heart about losing babies". Thank you for recognising the man involved. As a person who's been through miscarriages and stillbirths, it's nice to be recognised as being involved.

        Commenter
        The Commentator
        Date and time
        June 03, 2014, 11:29AM
        • I am very thankful to Georgie for telling her story. Having experienced two early miscarriages in the past year, I know that it is a painful and intensely personal loss whatever stage it occurs at. JTHooker, I understand the trauma that comes from repeated ultrasounds bearing bad news - you can only do this so many times. Like Georgie, my partner and I have now "closed the door", grateful for the beautiful healthy child that we have and the experiences we will share in the future as a family of three.

          Commenter
          Daisy
          Date and time
          June 03, 2014, 11:45AM

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