Actress Tahyna MacManus has spent a lot of time in front of the camera over the years. But her love of storytelling and a desire to see the experiences of women represented more authentically drove her to kickstart a new phase in her career.
In the latest episode of the She Does This podcast, Jordy speaks with Tahyna about her progression from actress to filmmaker, and her most personal project to date: Misunderstandings of Miscarriage (or MUM).
Speaking about the film, now streaming on Stan, Tahyna explained to Jordy that the project has been an emotional ride for her.
“Part of me is very, very nervous, given it’s a lot of my personal story out there,” she said.
“And then the other part is just really excited because I feel like there is an increasing amount of conversations opening up already around the topic of miscarriage and loss, and I’m excited to be part of that conversation and movement.”
Tahyna’s investment in this area of discussion is deep, and it is heartfelt. Not only because of her compassion for the families impacted by the grief of miscarriage and loss, but because she personally has felt this pain.
In the episode, Tahyna took Jordy through her journey of meeting her husband, their decision to begin trying to start a family, and how they navigated their first pregnancy loss.
She explained there was a short period after her first positive pregnancy test where the couple was excitedly planning their future.
“We were just loving imagining everything,” she shared.
At this time, Tahyna and her husband Tristan were living in America, away from their support network in Australia.
“I had a really bad experience going into the emergency room,” she continued.
“They [the doctors] basically dismissed what I was going through; told me to go home, take a Panadol and basically finish miscarrying at home… It was maybe one of the most traumatic experiences of my life.”
Tahyna went on to explain that what followed was a sense of isolation, not because she didn’t have support from her husband and family, but because she felt a sense of failure as a woman.
Misunderstandings of Miscarriage emerged as a result of Tahyna sharing her experiences and reaching out to other women who were willing to share theirs, too. The film, she shared, is about recognising the “real loss” of miscarriage and validating the healing that needs to follow.
There is an “importance of being able to talk about your fears; being okay with not being okay,” she went on to say.
“I hope that by showing my experience, other women will feel okay.”
Listen to the full episode to hear more about MUM, Tahyna’s experiences of loss and her journey towards learning to process her grief a little more easily.