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Book Review: Lost Children by R. J. Christensen

In our unique LDS culture, we focus on the family as being central to the Creator’s plan. Because we know and understand the importance of bringing children to the world, it doesn’t make sense when we are faced with the crisis of miscarriage. When children are so crucial to our Heavenly Father’s design, why should such a thing as miscarriage exist, bringing with it so much pain?

In “Lost Children: Coping with Miscarriage for Latter-day Saints,” author R. J. Christensen shares her story of miscarriage, the heartbreak she endured, and the questions she asked. She had desired to be a mother her entire life, and when that seemed out of her reach, she wondered how she was to participate in the plan of families. Through her prayers and research, she arrived at answers which brought her peace, and she presents to us, the reader, the things she learned along the way, such as:
  • Most miscarriages cannot be traced to an action taken by the mother—i. e. it’s not the mother’s fault.
  • Many miscarriages take place when the pregnancy was actually a cell growth, rather than a fetal growth.
  • Many miscarriages take place when there was an abnormality within the fetus and the baby would not have been able to survive, if it came to full term—including chromosomal abnormalities.
  • Through it all is the hand of a loving Heavenly Father who knows our pain and will guide us through the minefield of our despair.
Christensen presents a well-balanced look at the medical reasons for miscarriage (using language that is easy to understand, even if you aren’t familiar with scientific terms) and the eternal perspectives we need to endure (without being preachy). I appreciated the blending of scripture and quotes from modern-day prophets in regard to the family and the truths of eternity. We also see quotes from other women who have endured loss.

One chapter I feel will be particularly meaningful is geared toward the husbands. When we hear of a miscarriage, we often focus on the feelings of the wife—her grief, her loss. But the husbands, too, bear a heavy burden. In addition to the loss they have suffered, they are expected to be the strong one and to keep things together while all else is falling apart. This chapter talks about the man’s emotions and the battles he faces as he strives to be there for his wife in the middle of his own despair.

I strongly recommend this book for anyone who has gone through the loss of a child through miscarriage. It is a sensitive, spiritual, and gentle guide through the process of grieving and toward the hope that there is a happy reunion waiting on the other side, with the testimony that our Savior is mindful of our every need and will see us through as we put our trust in Him.


Tristi Pinkston is a prolific blogger and media reviewer in addition to being an author. You can learn more about her by visiting her blog, here.

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