Dear Grieving Parents

 In Doula Support, Health, Postpartum Support, Pregnancy, Uncategorized

An open letter to the mother who has lost a baby…

Dear grieving mom,

It’s hard to find the words to say that may bring comfort after you’ve lost a baby. No one truly

knows how you feel except someone who has lost a child. I write this letter to you in full

understanding, in hopes that you will find comfort in knowing that you are remembered, and so

is your baby. I want to express to you that you are a mother, whether you experienced loss before

birth, or whether you lost an infant. I don’t know how long you carried, but I do know that there

is an unmistakable bond of love that happens immediately, the moment you found out that you

were pregnant.

I know that you had hopes and dreams for your little one that were also lost in disappointment

when you found out that your baby had not survived. You are not alone. I grieve with you. I have

the privilege of helping mothers prepare, deliver, and care for their babies. I do not take my role

as a doula lightly. I am invested in your motherhood and when your child is ill, or if you

experience loss my heart aches with you and for you.

I know that you are hurting but that you are finding the best possible way to carry on. As you

take this time to grieve I encourage you to seek support from those that love and care for you.

Allow you family and friends to comfort you. Most of all, take as much time as you need to

grieve. There is no timeline for grief and there is no protocol. Every mother is different and you

have permission to grieve for as long and however you must.

As you work through this process know that you will experience many emotions. You will be

angry, you will be sad, and you will have disbelief. Allow yourself to feel these things, you

deserve the right to feel any emotion that manifests. You are allowed to express your emotions

through tears, through screaming, through silence, and even through art. You are allowed to not

be ok at times and to take a moment to regroup. Don’t ever feel guilty about expressing your

grief.

If you have other children I know that the demand from them can be overwhelming at this time,

as they may not understand the concept of loss and sadness. They still need you. Don’t feel

guilty about delegating some of your responsibilities to dad or another family member if you can.

Take some time to regain your strength in order to be the best possible mom for your other

children. Think of this as you would the emergency mask that drops from the ceiling of an

airplane if there is a loss in cabin pressure. You are instructed to put your own mask on first, and

then assist others. You cannot help anyone else until you have properly taken care of yourself or

you run the risk of you both running out of air. Take the time you need to heal, it’s ok.

Lastly, know that you are in my thoughts. I have not forgotten you or your baby. You and

your baby are special to me.

An open letter to a father who has lost a baby…

Dear grieving Dad,

Let me start by expressing my condolences for the loss of your child. I know that sometimes dad

is left out and family and friends focus primarily on mom during the loss of a baby. I know that

this hurts you more than you probably know how to express and that you are most likely having

to be the rock for your partner during this time which means setting your own emotions aside

while being there for her. My heart aches for you as you endure this because many fathers feel

alone. I encourage you to confide in a close friend or relative that you can trust. Find someone

that you can cry with if you need to.

You have most likely wondered if there was anything you could have done to prevent this

tragedy as so many parents do. As a father, you have the desire to protect your family. I want to

reassure you that you have done nothing wrong, you nor your partner could not have prevented

this tragedy. Losing a child is nothing to feel ashamed about and it’s nothing to pass blame for.

As a doula, I help families prepare and care for their children. I often teach fathers how to take

an active role in caring for the baby. When the unfortunate happens, my expertise is extended to

you to help you cope with your loss in any way that I can. I hope that my words give you

comfort in knowing that you are not alone in your grief. I mourn with you and keep the memory

of your child in my thoughts. October is awareness month for pregnancy and infant loss, men

and women all over the nation who have lost a baby are remembering their child just like you.

Some of those beautiful couples have even been blessed to have what we call a “rainbow” baby,

a baby born after a couple experiences loss. The loss of this child will never be overshadowed

but I hope that you find comfort in knowing that many people, should they choose, can have

healthy children even after suffering a tragedy.

Now is the time to grow together as a family, your partner is depending on you. However, you

must take the necessary time to heal. Don’t feel weak if you need to cry, one of the strongest

things you can do is process through your grief. You are allowed to feel sadness and to mourn,

take time to do so. The pain that you are feeling will get easier as time goes on and I will keep

you and your family in my thoughts as you experience this difficult time. Hang in there dad, you

will make it through this.

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