Ways to Commemorate Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month

teddy bear loss

Approximately one million pregnancies in the United States end in miscarriage, still birth and death of a newborn. October is recognized as Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month, as designated by President Ronald Reagan in 1988.

Having a baby can be one of the most joyful moments of a person’s life, but what is the emotional impact when that joy turns to grief if the child dies during pregnancy or shortly after birth.

Nationwide, at health centers, women and patient support initiatives hold events in memory of those lost and to raise awareness, and aide women and their partners dealing with loss.

This type of loss is very very sensitive and when talking to a woman or her partner who have endured this type of pain, here are some stats to consider:
  • One in four pregnancies ends in the loss of a baby
  • The loss of a child is recognized as the most intense cause of grief
  • Parents never “get over” the loss of a child – no matter the age
  • Parents experiencing grief without supportive care can have debilitating consequences such as post traumatic stress disorder (PSTD) , depression and anxiety that could further result in job loss, divorce, difficulties in daily living, or impediments with parenting of living children
Getting support through grief is key to recovery, according to Missouri-based Perinatal Bereavement Care.
This month, search for a support event near you and/or consider doing one of the following to commemorate a loss:
  • Wear a special piece of jewelry in the name of the lost child
  • Get a tattoo
  • Purchase a star in the lost baby’s honor and name picked out for her or him
  • Hold a special ceremony with friends and family
  • Put together an album with photos of the mom while pregnant to commemorate that special time
  • Visit the burial plot if you got one for your baby
Also, to spread the word, talk openly about infant and pregnancy loss because the more people are aware, the less a stigma it becomes and more women know that they are not alone and have allies and supporters.

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