After your stillbirth
What is stillbirth?
Your physical health
Care of your baby
Your emotional health
Ways to say goodbye
When considering another pregnancy
The grief journey
How you feel grief
Surrogate and intended parents
Losing a twin or multiples
Impact of grief
Strategies for coping
Supporting friends after a stillbirth
When you experience the loss of a baby, no matter what the reason, you also lose the hopes and dreams of that baby's future. Feeling sadness and loss for those lost hopes is a natural part of grieving. You may find that previous losses resurface, whether they are similar or different. Learning to live with grief is an important part of moving forward.
Things that can affect how you respond to grief may include:
Often, parents will experience and express grief differently. You've each had different experiences during the pregnancy and feelings of attachment to the baby. You and your partner may find different ways to cope. At times, it may be hard to understand one another. At these times, it's important to keep talking to each other and be open about how you feel.
Although no 2 healing journeys are the same, the experience of many parents is that over time, a dull ache replaces the strong feelings of grief and loss that you may feel at first. Grief will stop dominating your life and eventually you will develop a “new" normal for how you feel.
Sometimes your friends and family may be uncomfortable with your experience of grief. They still care about you, but it's not easy to talk about. They may not know what to say or do to be helpful. Sometimes they may make comments that feel insensitive without meaning to upset you. You may feel like others don't recognize your loss and that you are alone. Talk about how you're feeling with your partner and your close friends. Counselling supports are also available. Call Health Link at 811 if you need help or to find support services near you.
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This material is not a substitute for the advice of a qualified health professional. This material is intended for general information only and is provided on an "as is", "where is" basis. Although reasonable efforts were made to confirm the accuracy of the information, Alberta Health Services does not make any representation or warranty, express, implied or statutory, as to the accuracy, reliability, completeness, applicability or fitness for a particular purpose of such information. Alberta Health Services expressly disclaims all liability for the use of these materials, and for any claims, actions, demands or suits arising from such use.