When a Baby Dies: The Experience of Late Miscarriage, Stillbirth, and Neonatal Death

When a Baby Dies: The Experience of Late Miscarriage, Stillbirth, and Neonatal Death

When a Baby Dies: The Experience of Late Miscarriage, Stillbirth, and Neonatal Death

When a Baby Dies: The Experience of Late Miscarriage, Stillbirth, and Neonatal Death

Synopsis

This compassionate book offers insight and information for all parents whose babies have died, their families and friends and professionals who care for them.

Excerpt

‘All those hopes, all that happiness and expectation, brought to an end for no reason.’

The death of a baby, whether at birth or in the weeks or months immediately afterwards, is no less a death than any other. It is no less significant, no less important, no less heartbreaking than the death of an older child or an adult. It is certainly different, but it is not a lesser event.

The loss of a baby is the loss of a person. All parents who are positive about their pregnancy include their baby not just in their plans for the future but in their present lives too, so that even before birth, a baby begins to be considered, loved and cared for. A baby ’s death is also the death of a person who would have been. It means the ending of dreams and hopes and plans, the loss of a future. Even a baby lost in the earliest stages of pregnancy may have this significance for the parents. Parents may also have invested so much of themselves in their baby that when the baby dies, a part of them dies too. Parents who lose their first baby lose their new identity as parents; those who already have children lose an expected new member of their family.

The significance of a baby ’s death has not been recognised in the past and bereaved parents have often struggled alone with a grief which others have neither understood nor acknowledged. Even now, when there is better understanding of this particularly difficult kind of bereavement and when professional practice has greatly improved, one of the most common themes mentioned by parents is still their feeling of isolation.

Reading about other people’s experiences can help parents to understand and make sense of what they are going through, and can give them the support of knowing that other people have been through the same or similar experiences. We hope that this book will help parents

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