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glow in the woods

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Parents of lost babies and potential of all kinds: come here to share the technicolour, the vividness, the despair, the heart-broken-open, the compassion we learn for others, having been through this mess — and see it reflected back at you, acknowledged and understood.

Thanks to photographer Xin Li and to artist Stephanie Sicore for their respective illustrations and photos.

for one and all > 4 years and still can’t handle others’ pregnancies

In just a few days it will have been 4 years since my first son unexpectedly died shortly after an emergency section at 33 weeks. I now have two living rainbow babies for whom I’m so grateful but continue to struggle with grief, anxiety, ptsd , etc. Others’ pregnancies have been a huge trigger so I’ve mostly avoided them which hasn’t been too hard to do as since my son died I’ve kept my friend circle small (and my and my husband’s families are small), and I’ve distanced myself from people when needed. Well now my SIL is pregnant and I’ve not coped well thus far. She’s been supportive to me over the last 4 years but this fact hasn’t done anything to alleviate the visceral ptsd reaction I feel whenever I think about her pregnancy. I regret that this is the case but it seems to be. I’ve thus told her that while I wish her the best I won’t be able to discuss pregnancy with her (and actually have no desire to talk to her at all). This isn’t a huge deal as she loves 700 miles away but it presents some issues for sure, one of the main ones being that I feel very judged for my handling of the situation by everyone except my husband and others who’ve experienced this sort of loss.

Why can’t people understand how painful this is? To have a dead baby... and I don’t think people understand ptsd at all. I don’t think I’m at the place where I have the power to just will myself to be supportive of her without great emotional consequence to myself. I’m in therapy and working on things as I do think compared to maybe even other loss moms I’m handling these sorts of situations “worse” but I mean, it’s all I can reasonably do right? Try to make progress? Why are people so unwilling after a certain amount of time to understand that I’m still devastated over the loss of my son and living with the aftermath daily? It feels so isolating, that seemingly no one gets it anymore.
July 4, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterMatthew’s mom
Dear Matthew’s mom
You are doing great, and being in therapy shows how hard you are trying to cope. Look what you have accomplished: two rainbows, and you are still here and fighting every day! You do have an immense power and such braveness, it’s extraordinary. Don’t forget that. I know it feels so isolating, people without this experience really don’t get it, maybe they cannot. I am also afraid that the grief and pain we feel will not really ease up, for me it hasn’t after 1,5 years. We can all just try our best, can’ We, and there are natural limits to it. Keep it up, greetings to you and all your sweet children.
July 6, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJana
Hi ,

I’m just over a year into life after loss of my baby August. My good friend just had a baby and my two girlfriends are both pregnant and another trying. I feel like I want everyone to just stop and wait for me to be ready for all this. I’m so angry for their probable straightforward drama free pregnancies. Then I fake happiness and feel terrible. It’s such a difficult part of loss. I miss and love my boy so much and these announcements trigger the pain. Perhaps that’s why I chose to accept a new job and move to a place where I know no one. I have a lot of support around me but there is nothing that can erase the triggers. Anyway just to say I think we all know that feeling. The gut punch when someone tells you they are Pregnant. Best of luck and I hope you continue to support yourself.
July 9, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterDanielle