For families coping with the sudden loss of a pregnancy or an infant, the initial shock is stunning. Many newly bereaved parents set out on an immediate quest for answers.
They read everything. They are likely to ask questions in the vein of why me? Or, will I always feel this terrible? These seem like impossible questions to answer, stopping the mourner in their tracks.
The search for answers is deeply personal. Different resources will resonate with different people at different points in time.
This list of resources is intended to demonstrate to the newly bereaved that they are not as alone as they feel. Some have said that they consider this to be cold comfort. Ultimately though, it is comfort still.
We experience grief both individually and collectively.
With that in mind, this list of resources is intended be shared with those who love the bereaved.
Grief is powerfully isolating. As a bereaved mother, I can tell you that it is a tremendous gift when those who wish to offer support work to understand the loss experience.
It is memorably kind when people summon the courage to ask to stay – and even steep in sadness. We all need company – even when we are terrible company.
These resources provide a window into loss, complex grief, and healing. While there is no one road map, they suggest that a hard-won peace is possible.
Tea formulated by a loss mom/military wife to support the stages of grief and healing. Beautifully made, packaged and presented, this is a beautiful and thoughtful gift to parents in grief.
An Exact Replica of a Figment of My Imagination
I recall giving this book to a friend. (I actually gave it to several friends). One read it and called me crying. “When I think of what you’ve been through," she said. I was so touched at this effort to understand – to this day I’m not sure if she knows how much that meant to me. An Exact Replica has become a go-to resource for bereaved mothers who have experienced stillbirth. McCracken delivers a powerful account of loss and complex redemption. Memoir.
This stunning memoir delivers the oft-neglected male perspective of grief and stillbirth. In Vessels: A Love Story, acclaimed writer Daniel Raeburn considers how the stillbirth of his daughter Irene devastated both he and his wife. He explores how their different responses to grief tested their marriage. He writes about their complex path to parenthood, which included multiple miscarriages and Irene’s stillbirth prior to the birth of their daughters. Based upon a New Yorker article of the same title, Vessels is a must-read. Memoir.
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