Baby Loss Awareness Week 2020

Every year, Baby Loss Awareness Week takes place from the 9th to 15th October. It’s an opportunity for parents, their families and friends to acknowledge and remember their precious babies who have died. Covid-19 has had a major impact on access to care and support, complicating grieving and limiting bonding with extended family. Alongside isolation and loneliness increasing in the general population, these are already emotions suffered during baby loss. The fact that it is rarely openly discussed only promotes this further. Now more than ever, we need to show people that they are not alone and the support is available. 

As many of you know, baby loss is something that I feel very passionate about and want to share, to break the stigma and normalise talking about it. This year, I have become more and more involved in the realm of bereavement care as part of my studies and I see myself hopefully specialising in it, at some point in the future. Beyond Bea, a charity which supports families and professionals alike, have done an incredible job in helping to provide education to students. Despite learning so much, and continually learning still, there's still so much that needs to be done in the wider community, not just in maternity settings. 

I think 2020 has been a year and a half for a lot of people, and I would hope that would make people kinder and more sensitive, but yet, when Chrissy Teigen and John Legend shared the loss of their baby boy, Jack, so many people attacked them. "Attention seeking" was just one of many comments who quickly took it upon themselves to sadly criticise their morning, instead of supporting them. 

Baby loss should never be kept private, unless that is what the couple want. Being in the public eye, that wasn't an option for Chrissy and John so I completely recognise that they would have to say something. But importantly, regardless, they wanted to celebrate and enjoy their baby, who they were expecting and already planning a life together with. What people failed to understand and ridiculed them for, was taking pictures. They are some of the only pictures they will ever have with their baby. They only have a short window to make physical memories with him and to remember him by. I always encourage women to take as many pictures as they can, even when their baby is going home with them. These precious moments are theirs and deserve to be kept forever. 

On that note, here's a reminder to everyone out there, be kind. Don't forget, this is one of the most difficult times, those parents will have ever gone through. Also, that child will always have a place in their family and they will forever be parents to the child.