When you're a loss parent, every single day is difficult. That lingering pain doesn't go away, ever, even if you want it to and even when you experience happiness again. Sometimes you'll even momentarily forget how broken you are on the inside, but then something comes along to remind you and you’re back to square one. Many of us loss parents process our grief by talking about our lost babies. It might make some people uncomfortable, but it shouldn’t. In fact, there things we need to hear when we talk about the babies we’ve lost, and if you’re close to a loss parent, you really need to hear this. Trust me when I say that your words can make all the difference.
Loss parents need the support of everyone they know. Family, friends, co-workers, anyone. You see, losing a child is a particularly heavy sort of grief. You plan your life to become a parent and, all of a sudden, your plans are dashed in a horrifically cruel way. Not only are your plans erased, but you're forced to live in a world surrounded by people who did see their plans come to fruition. You're happy for these parents, who see their babies growing every single day, but you're simultaneously destroyed by the knowledge that your baby did not get that chance.
So, us loss parents need compassion whenever we’re willing to finally open up to you. We also need people to check up on us from time to time, because it’s very easy to retreat into ourselves and our pain. Rest assured, even if we don’t seem to be fully receptive to conversations about our babies, we appreciate the effort. If you’re wondering what you can say that might help us at these difficult moments, read on.