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Posts Tagged ‘loss in utero’

Question:  

I lost one of my twins in the womb.  My daughter is now 16 months old. I’ve been thinking what would be an appropriate age to tell her about her twin?

Suggestions:  

Hello,  I am so sorry to hear of the loss of your baby.  Nothing about losing a much-wanted child is easy.  I suggest to parents that they talk about the sibling as early as possible.  It is easier to begin with a young child then to try and break the news to a say, 14-year old who may be shocked to hear the information for the first time.  Teenagers have growing up issues to deal with and learning the truth about their origins later in life can be mind-boggling.  With a young child, the words are less important than with an older child and the parent gets chances to work through the way to deliver the news. When the truth is shared early on, the lost sibling is part of the fabric of who the survivor is vs them facing a completely different scenario at an older age and realizing that they are not who they thought they were.  Even starting now is not to soon.  “There should have been two of you.  Your Dad and I miss your little brother/sister very much and wish whole-heartedly s/he could be here, with us.” And such.  Short sentences, a few words as you also feel the ground for sharing.  It will no doubt be difficult for you as well.  

When your daughter begins to speak, she will eventually ask you questions.  Use age-appropriate language when answering, be honest, try not to avoid the topic – it may come up when you don’t feel like talking about the subject, and expect the same questions over and over.  This is how small children incorporate the idea of death.  It is hard for them to understand what it means to die.  Repetition helps.  “S/he was too sick to stay with us and be a family on earth”  is a gentle way to help her understand until she is older and better equipped for as much detail as you feel you can share.  Be prepared to cry sometimes and that is OK.  You can tell her you are glad to have her but not to have her brother/sister makes you feel sad.  You are helping her learn that life is not always fair, there are loving people around her nevertheless and she is not to blame because he/she died.  She may ask you at some point if the loss was her fault.  It is not her fault, nor yours or her Dad’s.  It was something sad that happened and you would change it if you could, but you can’t.

I hope these are some helpful ideas.  Please accept my sincere condolences on your loss. Lynda

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Supportive article:  http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2016/08/20/488991373/for-parents-who-have-lost-a-baby-some-aid-in-their-grapple-with-grief

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I receive quite a few questions and comments around being a womb-twin survivor.  Some are hoaxes, most are genuine.  If you want a comment or reply, please leave a valid e-mail address and I will get back to you as soon as I can.  I waste a lot of time trying to support someone who has left an invalid e-mail address and my reply bounces back.

Unless there is a valid inquiry, please do not expect any feedback.

Best wishes.

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Loss in utero or the womb has two levels of grief:  One for the parents and probably one for the survivor(s) at some point in time.  From time to time, it happens that a parent may feel that their survivor is responsible for the death of the co-multiple in utero.  One survivor shared that she had a difficult relationship with her mother and when she was in her mid-twenties, her mother ‘lost it’ and screamed at her that she had killed and eaten her twin in the womb.  Such a situation isn’t possible and the loss in the womb isn’t anyone’s fault.  From time to time for no apparent reason a fetus is absorbed (Vanishing Twin Syndrome) or miscarried at some point in the pregnancy.  Neither the survivor or the mother is responsible.  More likely is that one embryo was unhealthy and unable to properly attach itself to the uterine wall to obtain the maternal nutrition it needed to grow and develop as its co-multiple did.  We don’t exactly know why this happens, but it does from time to time.

 

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The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 3,200 times in 2013. If it were a cable car, it would take about 53 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

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