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To think you dont ask a stranger how their kid died?

(35 Posts)
hidinginthenightgarden Wed 30-May-18 16:25:32

A friend of mine had a stillborn baby about 6 years ago. They have gone on to have 2 more kids and have recently started talking to them about the baby they lost.
We were out in a soft play centre today when a lady who had been interacting with her eldest child came over to speak to my friend. She firstly commented on how polite and chatty he was and then mentioned that he had told her about his sibling that lived in the clouds. Her actual words were "He was telling me about his brother in the shy, what happened?"

Is it just me or is this unbelievably insensitive and rude? We all just sat their gobsmacked as my friend replied "stillborn". I am still in awe at the lack of common sense or decency shown.

Onlymee Wed 30-May-18 16:26:53

People do this all the time. Usually with a head tilt. YANBU

hidinginthenightgarden Wed 30-May-18 16:28:19

Really? People are awful.

BlueSapp Wed 30-May-18 16:32:56

I think some people don't mind people asking because it means you get to talk about a much loved child using their name and keeping them part of your family, Its so sweet that her DC was able to talk about it too.

Its always sad when a child dies but keeping them spoken about is a wonderful way to include them in family life.

YouOKHun Wed 30-May-18 16:37:08

Agree to a point Bluesapp but this woman was just satisfying her curiousity rather than thinking about anyone else’s need or otherwise to talk.

Onlymee Wed 30-May-18 16:39:16

Yes, it's nosiness dressed up as concern. Your tragedy is their entertainment.

hidinginthenightgarden Wed 30-May-18 16:44:33

Bluesapp I see what you mean but as a total stranger, how would you know that the baby hadn't died recently and that asking would open very raw wounds? If you were an acquaintance then that would perhaps apply but not a random person.

KittenBeast Wed 30-May-18 16:46:05

Onlymee not sure they view it as entertainment, I've never found stillborn babies entertaining.

Witchend Wed 30-May-18 16:46:27

If a child spoke to me about a sibling "Living in the clouds" I'm not sure I'd assume the child died, I think I'd assume it was imaginary friend, so it may be the question wasn't phrased quite as "what happened" and more thinking along that lines.

Also, knowing some of the stories my dc have come out with at that age, it's more than possible that the lad may have told a long convoluted story which didn't add up and she was actually concerned.
A friend in her 80s told me how she had a stillbirth of her second child and her older child said nothing about it until she was told by a friend that he was telling people that "mummy and daddy had another baby but they didn't want it so they put it in a hole in the ground and it died." sad

LisaSimpsonsbff Wed 30-May-18 16:48:21

Is it just me or is this unbelievably insensitive and rude?

Definitely not just you! This is really thoughtless and horrible. It would be completely different if she'd been having a conversation with your friend and your friend had brought up her loss. However, to essentially demand unprompted that a stranger explains how their child died is horrible.

DeadButDelicious Wed 30-May-18 16:50:42

I like to talk about my first DD, who passed away late in pregnancy. She is my daughter just as much as my living child. It's nice when family and friends bring her up and say her name. I want her to be remembered.

I would however be completely blindsided by some stranger bringing it up out of nowhere. That's just nosiness.

hidinginthenightgarden Wed 30-May-18 16:52:56

Witchend, I was there. "What happened?" is exactly what she said confused

takeoffyourpantsandjacket Wed 30-May-18 16:55:23

For some people, their urge to be a nosey bastard outweighs any form of tact.

AllMYSmellySocks Wed 30-May-18 16:58:23

YANBU. I think if someone brought up the topic I might want think they want to talk about it and tentatively ask general questions but in that situation when a child has mentioned it no way should you go over to the parent to have a nosey about what happened.

sosks Wed 30-May-18 16:59:09

Bravo to your friend for being so restrained, I don't think I could have been. Though it's not been so long since I lost my own son.

BlueEyedBengal Wed 30-May-18 16:59:28

Some people don't know how to deal with things like thishmm

Strictly1 Wed 30-May-18 17:02:56

My brother hung himself - lots of people ask family ‘Why do you think he did it?’ Completely insensitive and some, even when you try to move the conversation to something else, will still continue to ask. It’s for their own curiosity and nothing to do with comforting others.

endofthelinefinally Wed 30-May-18 17:05:24

It is extraordinary how nosy, tactless and rude people can be.

I have had awful things said to me. Even someone who told me to just forget about DS1 because I was lucky to have 2 other children.

TheShapeOfEwe Wed 30-May-18 17:06:52

Totally unacceptable and insensitive, your poor friend sad

PinguPaws Wed 30-May-18 17:11:19

YANBU. Most thoughtful intelligent people will take their cue from the person they are talking to about a bereavement. So if someone mentions in conversation that a parent, child, friend or any loved one had died, they will usually offer "oh, I'm so sorry to hear that". If the person who lost someone close to them wants to say anymore to them, they might continue talking about the person or the reason they died.

But sometimes the pain is so raw and painful that they can't feel ready to talk about it anymore than that. I know when I've spoken to people about losing people close to me I was relieved that they offered their condolences kindly and I didn't need to go into anymore detail.

SheepyFun Wed 30-May-18 17:11:22

YANBU - I have a friend who lost an adult child. I got to know her some years after this. I confess I wonder if it was suicide, but I've certainly never asked her. I admit I'm curious, but my curiosity is a lot less important than her loss.

AsAProfessionalFekko Wed 30-May-18 17:12:43

I don't ask as I don't assume people want to discuss it but if people want to tell me then that's fine too.

takeoffyourpantsandjacket Wed 30-May-18 17:14:34

Some people don't know how to deal with things like this hmm

Yeah, so, 'sorry for your loss/I'm so sorry to hear that' would probably be the easier option than asking why!!!

BlueSapp Wed 30-May-18 17:20:50

How did your friend respond did she say she was upset after to you?

SleepingStandingUp Wed 30-May-18 17:22:28

People are so nosey. Not the same at all in terms of the trauma of asking but STRANGERS frequently ask me what is WRONG with my son and in front of him too

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