...to almost be relieved?(30 Posts)
Please don't get me wrong here. I loved the fuck out of my daughter, I really did - she was unexpected and I had one of those 'didn't know I was pregnant until it was too late' pregnancies, because I have loose skin from weight loss and I'm pretty sick as it is. I was always STAUNCHLY childfree and still am, I guess? (I was 18 at the time, I'm 23 now) but me and my OH at the time lost her in a freak accident. Don't wanna go into it, don't wanna reveal details - it was nobody's fault. I wasn't with her at the time.
I think I was a good mum? I don't know really. I never knew how to interact with children before and wasn't very good at playing with her, but I did love her more than any other person in my life. I don't want anybody to assume I don't in what I say next because I was absolutely devastated - I lost the one innocent, pure thing I'd made with my own body and my own body had been through a hell of a lot as it was and had never served me well, but it did manage to make something beautiful, even if I detested the entire notion and experience of pregnancy.
But I'm almost relieved? After a year of grieving, I'm coming to terms with things and not having her in my life, although I'm still completely messed up from it and I feel like I'm missing half of a thousand piece jigsaw, I...never wanted children. I ADORED her, this tiny person I made, and I never wanted to make her feel unwanted when she grew up, and I never would have done, nor would I have resented her for something that wasn't her fault but I'm starting to realise I can do the things I thought I couldn't do as a mother who would have to make a life for a kid (after never having a job because of aforementioned illness) and then not having time for anything I enjoyed because my OH (at the time, we've split) was working himself to the bone to try and provide for both of us so I had to do everything in the house because he would have to leave home at 7, come back at 3 and then go work whatever odd jobs he'd managed to find. I never wanted to be a housewife and I resented that, because I hate everything about it and I hated that I had to be the person taking care of her because I simply couldn't handle working, but I kind of think working might have been easier at this point.
I digress though. Am I awful for being glad in some respects I don't have to be a mum even though I'm devastated about missing out on her life?
It's OK for you to realise that there are positives as well as negatives to your situation.
There are with almost any situation.
I hope you get kind replies.
In a situation like this I would think grief would be very complicated. Have you ever accessed any professional support?
I think you are either being very honest or are trying to convince yourself that you have grieved.
Sorry for your loss.
I am sorry for your loss.
There is no right and wrong way to feel. Please do not be hard on yourself. I hope people posting realise that.
We, as humans, try to look for silver linings. Or hope. Or something to cling onto to help up move forward.
You are "almost" relieved. You are looking forward in your life. This does not reduce or remove your love and grief for your DD.
Look after yourself. Be kind. And maybe think about some counselling so you can talk about things in a safe place.
A friend of mine lost her 13 month old son in a terrible accident and nor was she with him at the time. She loved him more than I can explain, he was her world.
Unfortunately his dad was an awful person, there was emotional and physical violence in the home, he barely had anything to do with their son and it turned out he was also having an affair.
I remember at one point she told me that although she was heartbroken she'd lost her son one part of her was relieved that during his life he'd only ever known love and she was relieved that his passing meant he would never have to grow up with 'X' being his dad.
I won't lie, it shocked me when she said it but I do think that trying to find some kind of positive (for want of a better word) made her grief easier to deal with.
Whatever you're feeling is ok OP. You've been through a trauma that few could understand and it will bring with it complicated emotions. Don't worry if they're not "conventional", it's your experience. Good luck for your future.
Your thoughts are going to be all over the place still, even a year later. You're not just dealing with a devastating loss, you've clearly got other difficult situations to deal with.
Your thoughts don't make you an awful person, however mixed up they might be. I hope your getting help in working through them.
I think there's a bereavement board on MN, if you haven't already, you might want to post there as well as AIBU, which can be a rather challenging.
Be kind to yourself, OP.
You are definitely not being unreasonable. As others have said, grief of this magnitude will bring about some very mixed feelings and is very complicated. I wish I could say more for you but I cannot pretend to know what you're going through. I didn't want to read and run.
I was getting help, but I never really brought it up because one of my early thoughts after the initial shock was relief at not having to be a mother. I feel like shit for thinking it because so many people would give anything to be a mother but then I realise I'm beating myself up over the exact situation I'm a) in and b) would vehemently defend when I used to be on childfree forums more actively.
I can't really afford the help now, I can go to the NHS free service but (being frank) they're pretty shite in my area and spent a lot of time telling me my depression didn't exist a few years ago because I have a phobia of taking medication and vomiting. Been a bit put off them, although the grief counsellor (? i just got taken and dropped off at appointments, I honestly didn't arrange any because I was dissociating the entire time for months on end) was a really lovely person.
I'm so sorry this happened to you.
YANBU There are always positives and negatives to every situation, and you have found some positives. You've had huge negatives too. Life isn't black and white. Don't feel guilty for finding the positives- you need them.
FWIW I was 29 when I had my first and didn't know what to do with kids or babies either- it's common. We all just do our best as I'm sure you did. It sounds like you loved your DD very much and I'm sure you were a great mum.
You could try cruse bereavement counselling. They are free if you can't afford it or you can give a donation of whatever you can afford.
I'm so sorry for your loss. I can't imagine to begin the range of emotions you are feeling.
There's nothing wrong with how you're feeling op . As pps have said, there are positives and negatives in every situation and I actually think it's healthy that you can see both.
I'm so sorry for your loss .
I'm sure you were a wonderful mum to her.
I am sorry for your loss and you are entitled to feel the way you feel.
The fact is though that many parents who have lost a child do not feel relieved to have done so. They would do anything to have just one more minute with their child.
This is an emotive subject.
Be kid to yourself, you owe no one else anything. Your thoughts are your own and their okay.
You were a good mum. The hardest part about parenthood and the part that's hardly spoken off, is sometimes parenthood doesn't agree with us. I ins parenting hard. I wish I hadn't have had children, but he's hear and I love him. Like you did your daughter. That's being a good parent. Putting their needs above your own. Try not to feel guilty.
I've never been through this but offering words of support because I didn't wanna read and run. Hugs
QuiteLikely I would give anything to have her back, please don't get me wrong. I'd give up my life for her and always would have done, but I'm not going to have another - not because of the loss, which is terrifying and all, but because I never wanted children and still don't, if that makes sense?
I didn't know about Cruse but I'll definitely contact them, thank you. A lot of my family handled everything re funeral and my parents paid for a therapist without question, but I can't let them do that because they're retired now.
A few years ago, an elderly relative told me about the first baby she'd had, a baby I'd had no knowledge of. The baby died weeks after birth due to a congenital defect that would be operable with a good prognosis these days. The circumstances of the pregnancy were far from ideal, and it was in the days of a choice of adopt or live with stigma for being an unmarried mother. Although her family was supportive in that they would let her live with them, it was not an ideal family background for various reasons. As much as she loved her baby and would have always done her best for her, she said that the baby would have had a difficult life and circumstances and that it was a relief that they didn't have to go through that.
Finding silver linings can help make grief easier to process. There is no right or wrong way to grieve, but denial and acceptance are part of it. Your feelings could be either. Accessing the support of a charity will help you with processing your feelings.
The way you say on the one hand you're devastated but on the other relieved, sounds like you're compartmentalising.
I'm definitely not an expert but it almost sounds like the way you are copying with your grief is to remind yourself that you never wanted children anyway so it's okay as you're just back to the status you were before.
Be kind to yourself, I'm sure you were a great mum to your little girl and that she definitely knew she was loved.
There is no right or wrong way to grieve
A thousand times this^^
Op, I am so utterly sorry for your loss.
However, upon reading this (in an odd way, I'm very glad I did), it's made me realise just how much I now want to be a mother to my DS. Before even until just now before reading this I thought I would have been better off if I didn't have children but I now know that I regardless of how much my life has changed and how much I have to do for him that I wouldn't want it any other way.
Again, I'm so so sorry for what you have gone through, I understand why you won't have anymore.
Thank you for being so very honest and putting into words what some people would never admit, you are a brace person who shouldn't be hard on yourself nor should anyone else.
Take care OP, thank you!
Grieving is a multi faceted process, it is not just one emotion, it is a myriad of emotions. How you feel at any one point during this process is valid for you.
Op you sound worried/anxious (that you are weird or odd in some manner) that where you are at during this bereavement is 'not right' in some way, however for you, with your personal circumstances it is 'right'.
Be kind to yourself Op
razor just said what I was trying to up thread, but a lot more articulately.
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