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After your stillbirth

The grief journey

Grief is normal. It is our response to the loss of anything we value. It challenges our sense of meaning and purpose, but it can lead to growth and healing.

Grief is also hard work and takes energy. Everyone experiences loss differently. There's no set time limit to feel sadness or the pain of loss. The best thing you can do is to allow yourself and your partner the time to heal and find meaningful ways to remember. Let yourself, your partner, and family do what's most helpful for each of you.

Besides the physical recovery, emotional and spiritual healing are important. Emotional healing usually takes much longer than the physical healing. Open communication will help. Since everyone feels loss differently, try not to judge each other's reactions. Even though you have lost the same baby, how you respond to your grief may be very different.

Secondary losses

There may be other ways you are affected by the loss of your baby. Sometimes these are hard to recognize at first, like the loss of a role, or a change in relationships, support systems, or connections with your community. These are called secondary losses.

You may grieve the loss of your role as a mother or father. If you have other children, you may be sad about the loss of a sibling for them. You may find it hard to be with friends who have new babies. Or you may find that you're not comfortable going to baby showers or birthday parties for children. These are all losses you may feel as a result of the loss of your baby. Often it can help to talk to your friends and family about how you feel.​​

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