How are you? What can I do to help? Do you need anything? All questions that seem to flood your daily conversations. Everyone wants to help in one way or another. But for you, it can seem like an overwhelming feat to answer these seemingly simple questions. So you respond, “I’m fine.”
Two simple words that on the surface seem empty. But in reality, they are filled with emotions that are too hard to feel and shift through in one sitting. Having a list of things that can be given to others to be done can help you to manage these emotions while at the same time helping close family help.
How can others help?
Family and friends may want to provide support. Here are a few things that can be helpful:
Let others listen and be there- Talk about your feelings in an honest way with people that you know you can trust and will understand. You may talk about your child, or you may choose to just talk about anything else that is on your mind. Tell others what is most helpful to you. If it’s emotional support, spending time with them or allowing you to have time by yourself.
Helping with meals- Compile a list of places or favorite meals and give it to a friend that can set up a meal train.
Responding to condolences- Close friends and family members can help with the emotional stress of having to deal with responding to calls, text messages, and emails. Allow someone else to be in charge of responding to others’ messages.
Shopping- Errands and completing to-do lists can seem like unnecessary tasks during this time. Make a list of the items that need to be done.
Laundry- Laundry and cleaning around the house are simple tasks that can give others tangible jobs to do.
Childcare for other siblings- Siblings grieve and need attention from others just like you. Having someone that can connect and be there for your other children will allow you to continue your grieving process and enable them to start theirs.
Websites with Resources that can Help
- Resources at mombaby.org
- The Stillbirth Foundation
- The MISS Foundation
- The Compassionate Friends
- The TEARS Foundation
- Seattle Sheet
- Palliative Care Resources
- March of Dimes Loss Resources
- International Support Group
- Pregnancy and Infant Loss Network
- Share Your Story
- Centering.org– this is a link to books that can be purchased. May need to go in the Amazon store
Books to consider:
- Though the Darkness Gather Round: Devotions about Infertility, Miscarriage, and Infant Loss by Mary Elizabeth Hill Hanchey (Editor), Erin McClain (Editor)
- Empty Arms by Sherokee Ilse
- In A Heartbeat by Dawn Siegrist Waltman
- Grieving the Child I Never Knew by Kathe Wunnenberg
- Laughter in the Wind by Donna Myers Truns