We understand the importance of your baby's life and death. We hope to explain some of the feelings and decisions you will face, so that you don't feel so alone as you go through this grieving process.
Your body may actually ache for your baby. Many mothers physically yearn to hold their baby or to nurse him/her. You may have a very real feeling of the baby kicking, or feel sure you have heard the baby cry. A lot of mothers experience Empty Arms Syndrome, which is a physical weight on your arms where your baby should be. Because you have truly lost a part of yourself, it feels very much like an amputation. Some mothers have desperate, urgent thoughts about their baby. While this is normal, thoughts of suicide that won't go away are cause for concern. This is when you must discuss your feelings with a professional.
Grief will feel like a great weight coming down on you. It may be hard to concentrate or feel interested in the people and things that used to take up your time. You may feel anxious and unsettled, unable to make the simplest decision.
At any time, worrying about "going crazy" can add to your burden. It can be a great relief to learn that the symptoms of grief you are experiencing are natural and normal ways people cope with the death of someone they love. We encourage talking with other bereaved parents, healthcare providers, your doctor, a spiritual advisor, or others.
It is important to recognize that others will need to mourn your loss, too. They often hurt not only for themselves, but also for you. You may find yourself avoiding contact with others. Talking with family and friends about your baby helps them to be more sensitive to your needs. Some family members and friends don't know what to do or say, and therefore, make your grief more difficult by ignoring it or saying hurtful things. They simply don't understand how you feel and that you're not sure how long it will take to feel better again. Remind them to be patient with you, because nothing can take the place of this child.
As you travel the path of grief, you need time to mourn your loss and remember the dreams and hopes you had for this baby. Don't be afraid to ask your friends and family for help. Feel free to tell them exactly what they can do to help you. They are looking for any way to comfort you. Ask them to help with grocery shopping, making meals, or just to spend time with you.
There is no "right" way to grieve. Even if you and your partner are very close, you will discover differences in how you handle your grief. This discovery might be unpleasant. Be careful not to judge your partner and the quality of their grief. It is common to experience overwhelming feelings of anger, sadness, bitterness, confusion, hopelessness, and loneliness. Try to talk about what you're feeling, or write down your thoughts.
Providing comfort during the greatest of losses. #UnitedByLoss
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