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Don't know where I fit in

(10 Posts)
tinkerbellesmuse Sun 23-Aug-09 10:36:40

I don't even know if I belong here.

My DS was still born at 22 weeks - it hurts so much.

He was so real to me - I lost my baby, not the idea of a baby a real little boy who I saw and held and loved.

Yesterday one of my "best" friends was referring to an acquaintance who had a still birth at 37 weeks and referred to it as being "so much worse". I've also had the "it must be a relief" comment (we had recently been told he would not survive to term) and the "god imagine how awful it would have been if he'd been born alive" WTF?!

Then another girl who I hardly know started telling me that I'd get over it and move on quickly, referring to a miscarriage she had at 6 weeks.

I feel (and I am sorry if this sounds so insensitive) worse than if I'd "just" had an early mc (and I have had one so I know) but also it seems like I am being told that at least DS wasn't "real" so my feelings aren't valid.

I feel like I am going crazy. Am I a fraud for feeling like this? I know it can't be as bad as if I lost one of my other dc but why should I feel like I have to make such a comparisson?

spongebrainmaternitypants Sun 23-Aug-09 10:39:52

tinkerbelle, I'm so sorry to hear about the tragic loss of your son, and also the insensitivity you have suffered from others. I have not had a stillbirth so can't offer any practical advice, but those I know who have speak very highly of the support network SANDs, that helps couples who have lost children in pg or at birth.

I'm sure others will be along soon who know much more about this than I do.

Tc x

spongebrainmaternitypants Sun 23-Aug-09 10:41:12

Link for SANDs

PacificDogwood Sun 23-Aug-09 11:06:29

tinkerbelle, condolences to the v sad loss of your son. Of course you are "entitled" to grieve for him just as you would grieve for a liveborn baby or child. You are his mother and have carried him for all this time, worried about him and loved him. Please try not to listen to much too what people say: they are often at a loss, want to help when there is no real help, and therefore burst out this the wrong thing.
Did you get to see him or hold him? Spend some time with him? Some hospital will provide a photograph or hand/foot prints.
It is a very arbitrary rule that his death will be counted as a "miscarriage" rather than "intrauterine death".

I have had 4 early miscarriages and have looked after families who have suffered late pregnancy losses/stillbirths/neonatal deaths. There is no doubt in my mind that a later loss like yours is so much harder to bear than an early miscarriage, accepting of course that every loss is sad and that everybody will feel differently about it.

I hope you get support, SANDS are superb. Can you speak to your husband/partner about how you feel? How is he coping? Did you get to have some kind of memorial for you little one?

A friend of mind who lost a much longed for baby around your gestation named a star after him...

I wish you a lot of strength, allow yourself to grieve. You will always remember your son, but the pain will become less acute over time.

FabBakerGirlIsBack Sun 23-Aug-09 18:12:50

I am so sorry for your loss.

You of course DID have a baby and nothing is worse than losing a baby.

I have lost two and maybe I was lucky to lose them early on but they were still my babies and one as my son's twin so that is particularly hard for me.

People say the stupidest things because they can't handle what has happened.

Take your time to grieve for your son and don't listen to people who are making things worser by their lacj of understanding.

bluebump Sun 23-Aug-09 18:20:30

I am really sorry to hear of your loss. I too lost a baby at 22 weeks 2 years ago now.

I found this support board invaluable and now I am a CL for them.

My best friend had a stillbirth at 39 weeks and she never once thought my loss was any worse than hers although I always thought it probably was.

My pregnancy had been difficult and on the verge of miscarriage since 12 weeks. My consultant said my DS was unlucky to survive as long as he did as he really should have been an earlier loss.

FabBakerGirl is right, people do say the most ridiculous things. I honestly think people don't realise how 'formed' a baby is at that stage - my DS was born breathing and lived for 10 minutes but is referred medically as a miscarriage and I feel that doesn't do him justice. I gave birth to him and I had to see him buried, I paid for his headstone and yet there is no legal record that he existed except for my photos etc so I understand your feeling that your DS wasn't valid. Believe me, he was.

Anyway as you see I still have 'issues' about it too!

tinkerbellesmuse Sun 23-Aug-09 20:39:50

Thank you all so much for your messages.

I am sorry for all your losses too - it is so heartbreaking.

Bluebump - I think my feelings are very similar to yours. I can only imagine how awful it is to lose a baby in the latest stages of pregnancy and deep down I am sure it is worse for all those ladies who have later losses, it's just I resent the implication that my DS didn't exist. My consultant also expressed great suprise that DS survived as long as he did - quite unique apparently sad!

You are right that people don't always imagine that you had a fully formed baby - two of my friends asked to see the pictures of DS and were both shocked that he looked "normal".

Fabbakergirlisback - I'm sorry if my comment about early losses appeared I was diminishing your own losses: ignore me I'm just angry at everyone at the moment. I do understand that people just don't know what to say and I've also been angry at people who have said nothing so I guess people just can't win.

NanaNina Mon 24-Aug-09 01:24:25

Dear TBellesmuse - I too am so very sorry for the loss of your little boy. I have a close friend who had a still born child at full term but it doesn't matter when it was, the pain is the same I'm sure.

Someon has suggested SANDS and my friend certainly got a great deal of support an comfort via this organisation, so I would at least google it if I were you.

As for the comments people make - they undoubtedly say these things to try to make you feel better but don't have any awareness that it is SO insensitive. I think death is a great taboo in our society and we don't know how to deal with it or cope with people who are bereaved.

Hope so much that the pain will lessen in time. It was many years ago that my friend lost her little boy but I will never forget his funeral (and still cry when I think of it). For her it was only the passing of time that healed...........it came over her in waves and eventually the time between the waves got longer......

Sending you love and my sincere sympathy.

AppleHEAD Wed 26-Aug-09 22:22:54

I had a little girl who was stillborn at 34 weeks. Your loss is just as great and I am so sorry for you. People have no idea what to say so they say stupid things. Or they just want so much to make it better for you so they try to look for something worse. It is all worse and horrible. But I am just so so sorry for you and I really wish you hadn't had to experience this terrible loss. I am sorry for all the people who experience the loss of a baby however many weeks it is!

AppleHEAD Wed 26-Aug-09 22:26:04

Also I would recommend SANDS. They did have a great talk section like this but amazingly they have had to suspend it for a while because people were abusing it. But there are local meetings you can go to and a support phone line.

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