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What Not To Say To A Grieving Parent

Updated on September 22, 2016

DOH!

Loss For Words

Inevitably, if you have lost a baby or a child, you will hear some of the most hurtful things you have ever heard in your life. Sometimes people just blurt out something due to their nervousness about saying something wrong. Others will just say nothing. Undoubtedly, most of them mean well, but when you're grieving the loss of your child, some conversations are muddied by the overwhelming myriad of emotions, lack of emotions/numbness or absolute anger at the world. Or really, anywhere in between. The point is, your perception is jaded and things that others will say can hurt more than they normally would. I'm sharing this article to let you know you aren't alone if your mother in law tells you that you can have another child, or if your best friend asks if you want to babysit their kids so you don't miss yours.

I am also sharing this in hopes that it might save someone a painful interaction. So if someone you love has experienced the death of their child... read this and simmer over the what not to says.

What People Say...

  • You can always have another kid.
  • Maybe someday, you'll be blessed with another.
  • At least they were only ___ days old. IF they were older it'd be worse.
  • You're still crying? It's been a year already.
  • Why don't I bring over my baby so you can hold on. I'm worn out of watching them anyway and could use a break.
  • Everything happens for a reason, maybe the baby would have been retarded or something.
  • Time will heal your wounds and you'll move on.
  • I don't know how you do it, you're so much stronger than I am.

My responses...

  • You can always have another kid.

    Are you God? Because I tried years to have this one. Having another baby will not make me miss my daughter any less.

  • Maybe someday, you'll be blessed with another.

Same response as above. Except, if I was blessed, my daughter would still be here.

  • At least they were only ___ days old. IF they were older it'd be worse.

Yes, I was given 33 days with my daughter. However, I do not think her being an infant makes this ANY less painful than if she was in her twenties. I developed her, I carried her, I pushed her out of my vagina... THERE IS NOTHING THAT COULD MAKE WATCHING MY DAUGHTER DIE ANY BETTER.

  • You're still crying? It's been a year already.

There's the door...

  • Why don't I bring over my baby so you can hold on. I'm worn out of watching them anyway and could use a break.

Holding your baby may not only increase my anxiety and post traumatic stress response, it may set me back in my healing progress. Holding YOUR baby does not make me miss mine less. And the fact that you're even complaining about your baby to me, means you HAVE NO respect for my situation.

  • Everything happens for a reason, maybe the baby would have been retarded or something.

Although I do believe God has a greater plan for my daughter than being stuck on this hell on earth, I would have loved and taken care of her until I died, regardless of her functioning level.

  • Time will heal your wounds and you'll move on.

I will miss my daughter and grief the rest of my life. Time may ease my response, but every day I live I will miss my kid and wonder what her life would have been like.

  • I don't know how you do it, you're so much stronger than I am.

I did not choose this life. I am not strong. I'm just trying to survive everyday. If you were on this GOD FORSAKEN road you would be doing the same damn thing I am.

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