Mum who had seven miscarriages urges others to seek support

Caroline Pocock, with sons Rafferty and Zachary and husband Karl

Caroline Pocock, with her youngest son, Rafferty - Credit: Caroline Pocock

A mother-of-two who has had to come to terms with the heartache of seven miscarriages has urged others not to suffer in silence and seek support.

Since 2009, Caroline Pocock has fallen pregnant nine times, with seven of these ending in miscarriages - and it was not until the sixth attempt that her first son Zachary was born.

And as she prepares to run the London Landmarks Half Marathon in April, the 39-year-old is urging the many women going through the same trauma to seek support like she did.

Caroline Pocock, with sons Rafferty and Zachary and husband Karl

Caroline Pocock, with sons Rafferty and Zachary and husband Karl - Credit: Supplied

Mrs Pocock's first miscarriage came in 2009, when she suffered what is known as a missed-miscarriage, which is when a baby dies in the womb but the body does not recognise the loss.

Following the loss, Mrs Pocock and husband Karl continued to try for a baby, but on each of the next five occasions, she suffered similar, heartbreaking miscarriages.

She had all but lost hope, but her desire to become a mother never waned and, in 2012, gave birth to her first son. 

Caroline Pocock, who is running the London Landmarks half marathon

Caroline Pocock, who is running the London Landmarks half marathon - Credit: Caroline Pocock

She said: "It does not matter if you have had one miscarriage or if you have 20, the pain does not get any easier - it is the exact same.

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"But for my whole life I have always known I wanted to be a mum and felt in my heart that one day I would be one. Every miscarriage I had was hugely emotional but there was still that yearning that I could not turn off."

But the grief she felt did not stop consuming her and she found herself feeling isolated from her friends who had children.

"There was a period where I felt I was almost surrounded by pregnant people - one time I had to literally run out of Sainsbury's because I just felt like everywhere I looked there was somebody else carrying a baby," she said.

"And it can be such a tricky situation to share - people just don't know what to say to you about it and often the cliches come out and people end up saying totally the wrong thing.

"Things like 'at least you know you are fertile' or 'at least it wasn't an actual baby' - even well-meaning things can be hurtful."

Mrs Pocock, from Silfield near Wymondham, said she originally tried to bottle her emotions up, feeling as though she was "the only person in the world going through it".

Caroline Pocock, who is running the London Landmarks half marathon

Caroline Pocock, who is running the London Landmarks half marathon for Tommys - Credit: Caroline Popock

But she eventually sought the support of pregnancy and baby loss charity Tommys, for which she is fundraising with her run.

She said: "I started to blame myself and just wanted to find a reason it was happening and felt a bit embarrassed by it. But the midwives from Tommys were amazing and just gave me a different perspective.

"They gave lots of great advice and their website is full of different things to read, which is where I started and it make me realise that I wasn't alone at all."

After Zachary's birth she suffered two further miscarriages - one of which had almost fatal consequences for her.

But in 2020 she then gave birth to her second son, Rafferty.

And she said she was now doing the half marathon as she found that running proved another good way of coping with her grief.

She said: "I have a secluded little route I have set out near our home which I've nicknamed Tinker's Track in honour of the last baby I lost and I just find that it's very difficult to run and cry at the same time - so I run.

"My advice to anybody going through the same thing is to remember that you are not alone. And if you are close to somebody you know has gone through it, all you need to do is let them know that you are there for them."

To support her fundraising, visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Caroline-Pocock6

The London Landmarks Half Marathon takes place on Sunday, April 3.