Mothering Forum banner
1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
First of all, ny heart goes out to each and every one of you strong women who have lost your babies. I myself have not, so I can't even beign to imagine the pain you are dealing with.

The reason I sought out this board is that my children's pediatrician recently lost her baby girl. She was born at 26 weeks and passed away 12 days later. This was back in April. When we went in for our well baby check (my daughter was born just a month before, so I wasn't even sure if I should bring her in), the nurse informed us that our doctor did not want anything mentioned. Out of respect for her wishes, I didn't bring it up. But I soooo wanted to reach out to her. Anyway, this was a couple of months ago. I think of her and her daughter often, and I still want to reach out to her, so I wanted to ask those of you that have gone through similar situations what would be an appropriate thing to do. I cross stitched a birth record for her precious baby, but my husband says he's not sure how that would go over. I wanted to do something to honor her baby, but I do not want to offend her in any way or make her feel worse (not that that's possible). Now, I do not know her outside of the doctor/patient relationship (she is also my 22 month old son's pediatrician, so I've known her in that capacity for about 2 years). I just feel like by not saying anything (even though that's what she requested), I'm not letting her know that her daughter is thought of fondly by people that she didn't even know cared. I do care, very much. What can I do to show her that?

Thanks in advance for any advice/suggestions.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,819 Posts
I applaud you for following her wishes and not bringing it up in person. Your doctor may be trying to keep her personal and professional lives as seperate as possible.

Why don't you call the office and ask to speak to her nurse? Ask her if she thinks it would be okay to mail the birth record you cross stiched. She'll know better than anyone how your doctor would feel about that.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,115 Posts
DuracelBunny,
Thank you for coming here and asking for advice about this situation.
Speaking from experience I will tell you that when I went back to work 8 weeks after my son died at 9 months, I did not want people talking to me about it. I spoke about it with the people that I wanted to talk to, and I wanted to NOT discuss it with the people I didn't. Just because pregnancy is so visible and we usually talk with it openly, grief is not the same. You cannot grieve with just anyone. If she is back at work, it is probably the only time of the day she can put her grief down or away for a little while.
The problem is that everyone who's child hasn't died is so broken up that they feel the need to talk to us about it, even if it's not what we need at that time. They want to tell us where they were when they found out and what they were thinking and that's probably cathartic for them, but not necessarily for us.

Think about what it is you will get from mentioning her daughter's loss to her. Is it enough that you created that beautiful memento for her? Could you give it to her in a couple of months or a year, maybe if she brings up her daughter to you?

This is just my own personal experience, so I hope you can take something from it. I believe that this woman and her daughter are benefitting from your care and compassion, even if you don't ever mention a thing to her out loud.

I guess the answer to your question, for me, would be to respect her wishes and don't mention it or send anything to her. Good luck with your decision.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,819 Posts
Quote:

Originally Posted by SweetTeach
...I guess the answer to your question, for me, would be to respect her wishes and don't mention it or send anything to her...
The more I think about this question, the more I am leaning towards the same answer. It occured to me that even if you mail the gift, then your doctor will feel like she has to say something the next time she sees you and work may be her only "safe haven."
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you for your responses. That is exactly why I didn't give her the birth record before, I didn't want her to have to feel like she had to thank me or even mention it if she didn't want to. I had toyed with the idea of adding in my note that she didn't have to say anything to me about it if she didn't want to, but I don't want to make her uncomfortable. I completely understand what you are saying about it being more cathartic for me, not her - and that is the exact opposite of my goal. I can't imagine how difficult it must be for her to return to work with children and babies everywhere. The last thing I would want to do is make it even more difficult for her. I think you are all right, I should just continue to respect her wishes and not mention anything. Thank you all for your help.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,149 Posts
Like the other posters, I am leaning towards the idea that work is an escape where she can allow herself to forget (not that we do, but we can pretend). But I wonder if you could still call and speak to her nurse, let her know you had made the birth record already, and ask her to let you know if the dr's decision changes later on, or even give it to her and ask her to pass it along when/if she feels it would be appropriate. I recieved a couple of gifts months later that had been bought/made before my daughter's death, and I could appreciate them after the grief wasn't so raw. I appreciated that they had been thinking of me all that time.

Edited to add: I think a card expressing your sympathy/support/prayers, etc would still be appreciated. After this amount of time, just an "I was thinking about you after our visit today" sympathy card would still be appropriate.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,353 Posts
I have to agree with the other posters, that maybe work is her only safe haven from the grief she is feeling, that being said I really wanted people to mention my daughter, and still do. When I finally returned to work after losing Arawyn, I apreciated the mothers who mentioned that they had been thinking of me, or even shared their losses with me. Now I will admit that my situation is very different. I work part time providing child care in the UU church I am also a member of, so these women are also part of my church, and alot of them are friends. I was the most touched when a seven year old little boy I watch spoke to me about my daughter. He mentioned how he used to talk to her when I was pregnant, and how he knows she must really miss me. He drew a lovely picture of her as an angel being watched over by his pet dog who had recently passed. It was very touching to me. But every person is different. I like the idea of asking her nurse what she thinks might be best. And she may be able to let you know how to best go about sharing the wonderful birth record you made. Also now that it has been a few months she may be ready to talk more openly about her loss, and hopefully the nurse would be able to let you know.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,573 Posts
DB, I know I'm late on this but I've been away. My family doctor lost a baby boy a number of years ago. She ended up giving up her practice because she felt she couldn't get away from the people with well meaning wishes.
I think you will find that not one of us here hasn't been told something by somebody who meant well that hurt us deeply. I think having her nurse tell people she doesn't want anything mentioned is her way of ensuring that none of her clients say anything hurtfull while attempting to be comforting.
I do agree with Carrie, a card saying you are thinking of her, but not offering her any advice would still be appropriate. I found for myself that when clients said something to me directly, if it was appropriate, I felt I would cry, which shook my professional confidence (I don't have a job where emotions are terribly "encouraged"--unless it's your dog that died) but if the client said something well meaning but hurtfull, I would feel angry and then I knew I was not professional. Just thinking that this may be where your doc is coming from.
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top