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Dealing with family & friends

The Comfort Spot

Tools for coping with your loss

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January 22nd, 2006, 03:28 PM
Astrid's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 27,408
What does one NOT say to a woman that has just lost a baby to m/c, stillbirth or neonatal loss? How do you handle communicating with family and friends exactly what you need? How can we educate them on our loss? Here are a few suggestions by author Dr. Davis.

Finally, here are some suggestions as to approaching your friends.

”Tell them you will cherish their sympathetic ears, shoulders to cry on and hugs.”

”Let them know it is ok to ask questions.
You need to talk about it and them asking prompts the situation to occur.

”Confess that you need specific, detailed offers of help because you don’t have the energy to assign tasks and you don’t want to impose on anyone.”
The typical, “Call if you need anything” is to broad of an issue. For us, it is easier to answer yes to a simple question like “Would you like me to cook dinner for tomorrow night” or “Can I pick Junior up from school for you today?”.

”Explain how you would rather have them bumble through with honest expressions of their feelings than avoid you, cheer you up. Fix things or offer advice.”
Let them know it is ok to not have the “perfect” statement. We are all human!

”Ask them to use your baby’s name and to acknowledge your baby on anniversaries and holidays.”

”Tell them that you’ll appreciate their patience and support as you find your own way through grief.”

<div align="center">**All these suggestions and comments have been taken from Empty Cradle, Broken Heart by Deborah L. Davis.**</div>
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January 30th, 2006, 09:02 PM
beck12's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Michigan
Posts: 12,330
If you are reading this on behalf of someone else, some advice on how to help them.

* Do let your genuine concern and caring show.
* Do be available... to listen or to help with whatever seems needed at the time.
* Do say you are sorry about what has happened and about their pain.
* Do allow them to express as much unhappiness as they are feeling and are willing to share.
* Do encourage them to be patient with themselves and not to expect too much of themselves, nor to impose any 'shoulds' on themselves.
* Do allow them to talk about their loss as much and as often as they want to.
* Do reassure them that they did everything they could and that it wasn't their fault.
* Don't let your own sense of helplessness keep you from reaching out.
* Don't avoid them because you are uncomfortable. Being avoided by friends may add pain to an already painful experience.
* Don't say that you know how they feel (unless you have experienced their loss yourself, and then you can be particularly supportive).
* Don't say 'you ought to be feeling better by now' or anything which implies judgment about their feelings.
* Don't tell them what they should feel or do.
* Don't change the subject when they mention their loss.
* Don't avoid mentioning their loss out of fear of reminding them of their pain (they won't have forgotten).
* Don't try to find something positive about the loss (eg. a moral lesson, closer family ties, etc).
* Don't point out that at least they have their other....
* Don't say that they can always have another.... (they wanted this one).
* Don't say that they should be grateful for....
* Don't make comments, which in any way suggest that the loss was their fault (there will be enough feelings of doubt and guilt already).

( I wish I could remember where this came from it was a mc site I know - but not sure which one...I just thought it was good.
B - Crazy momma to my two boys
We've begun to raise daughters more like sons... but few have the courage to raise our sons more like our daughters. ~Gloria Steinem

If a man has been his mother's undisputed darling he retains throughout life the triumphant feeling, the confidence in success, which not seldom brings actual success along with it. ~Sigmund Freud
My mom is a neverending song in my heart of comfort, happiness, and being. I may sometimes forget the words but I always remember the tune. ~Graycie Harmon
Don't wait to make your son a great man - make him a great boy. ~Author Unknown
You don't raise heroes, you raise sons. And if you treat them like sons, they'll turn out to be heroes, even if it's just in your own eyes. ~Walter M. Schirra, Sr.
A man loves his sweetheart the most, his wife the best, but his mother the longest. ~Irish Proverb
Mother's love is peace. It need not be acquired, it need not be deserved. ~Erich Fromm
Children need love, especially when they do not deserve it. - Harold Hulbert
Mother is the name for God in the lips and hearts of little children. ~William Makepeace Thackeray
God could not be everywhere, so he created mothers. ~Jewish Proverb
The best conversations with mothers always take place in silence, when only the heart speaks. ~Carrie Latet

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February 22nd, 2006, 04:25 PM
*~LuckyCharms~*'s Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Michigan
Posts: 13,856
Ha....I went back to work today for the first time since I started miscarrying a week ago....everyone was super nice and compassionate. At first, they seemed to want to ignore it, which wasn't what I wanted at all. Then, most everyone gave me hugs and let me know that they were there for me.

BUT, my one friend was not so tactful! She said, "Well, weren't you not really ready anyway?" Which is SO not true, I've wanted this baby for years and years and years.....I had just happened to mention that I was a little scared for such a big change. And ANYWAY, even if I hadn't been ready, does that mean that my baby is better off dead?

That really ticked me off! : p But like I said, it was mostly a comforting day!

Thanks to cavewoman for my adorable siggy!

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May 25th, 2006, 07:33 PM
*Firefly*'s Avatar Girlfriend and Blogger
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 24,397
I think the most painful things I have been told about the loss of my babies were "Its for the best" "What you would have kept it?" and "I know how you feel, I took the morning after pill"

NONE of those where ok things to say. especially the third one.
Cause I know my weakness, know my voice,
Now I believe in grace and choice,
And I know perhaps my heart is farce,
But I’ll be born without a mask
~ Babel, Mumford & Sons

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