It is the most un-imaginable thing for any mom out there, losing their baby. It is something we worry about from the moment we know that we are pregnant, and continues until the day we die. We fear that we will lose our baby due to miscarriage or stillbirth. Then we worry that we will lose our baby to SIDS in the middle of the night. This causes us a lot of anxiety, and it never goes away. Whether our ‘baby’ is a newborn, or a 16-year old out with their friends, we worry about their well-being.
In this world of ours, it seems like nothing is more important than the internet and social media. It is a great tool for interacting with friends/family as well as an entertaining tool when you are breastfeeding in the middle of the night. You may wonder what a mom losing her baby and the internet have in common, and the truth is a lot.
With all the good things about social media, comes a lot of negatives. There will be countless stories of other mom’s who have lost their babies, and a lot of pregnancy announcements. Basically, the entire internet should be a trigger warning for any mom who has lost their baby. A trigger warning is a brief written sentence at the beginning of any article or comment, that will suggest there is a topic discussed that may trigger a negative emotional reaction for the person reading it. A kind of ‘rating’ for what you are about to read.
Until you lose a baby, or struggle with infertility, you may not even realize what needs a trigger warning for those living through these struggles. Well, I am going to list the 15 trigger warnings for any mom’s who have lose their baby.
15Baby Food Expires
If a mother has lost their baby during infancy then there are going to be trigger warnings all around. If the baby has started on solid foods, then chances are there is going to be some baby food around the house. While, clearing out baby stuff is painful enough, sometimes the baby food gets pushed back in a cupboard and forgotten about.
Months later, when mom is looking for something else, she may come across these containers of baby food. Mom may think to donate this food, so she checks the expiration date. If the food has expired it can be a very painful moment when she realizes that the food expired because there was no baby to consume it. She has nothing left to do but throw it in the garbage.
14A Drive By
We have already discussed how a mother who loses a baby at any gestational of infancy age is still a mother who has lost her baby. This one trigger may apply more to mothers who suffered the loss of a stillborn baby, the drive by of the hospital where she delivered. No one likes the hospital, it is normally the place where heartbreaking things happen. When a mom drives by, she may have some pretty sad memories of when she was last there.
This can also affect mother’s who have lost their babies at infancy. The hospital would then be a reminder of the place where she brought life into the world. Every drive by may cause a slight twang in her heart of what was and what will never be.
We all have dates that mean something to us. Our birthday, wedding anniversary and the birth of our child are just a few that come to mind. It is normally a chance to celebrate and enjoy with friends and family. When you are a mother who lost your baby, these anniversaries become daunting and feared. There are normally two days that have massive trigger warnings for a grieving mom, the day their child was born and the day that they left this world.
The day of the birth brings memories, and sadness as you are not celebrating a birthday as you should be. The date that the child passed away is met with sadness and grief as you go on that journey all over again. There is no way to get through these days without pain, but with having trigger warnings it can be a little bearable. Knowing that these days are going to trigger negative emotions, you can prepare what you need to do to get through the day.
A lot of mom’s take to social media to express their loss and share their story with the world. A lot of mom’s mean well and want to either warn other mom’s about what they did, or they want to just get it out there in the world. These all require trigger warning’s, and I am surprised I don’t see more trigger warning labels on these.
When another mom reads a story about a fellow mom losing a baby it can hit a little too close to home. Sometimes a mom can almost be at a point where she is able to live her life again. Not forget her child or feel completely pain-free, but can be at a place of peace and remembrance. Then she scrolls by a story of another mom who has lost their baby and it brings them right back to a place full of pain and darkness.
You also do not have to go very far on social media to see news stories. They are all over, and this is another thing that is both a blessing and a curse. It is great that we have all of this world news at our fingertips, staying in touch with current events has never been more important. It can also be a burden, to hear about stories where any form of hurt is caused to children.
If a mother has lost her baby, and she is about to see a news story about mistreatment of a child in any way, there should be a flashing red trigger warning. While, us with children are just as hurt by stories, we at least get to hold our little one’s closer. A mother who has lost her child is filled with anger, wondering why these ‘parents’ are allowed to have children, while hers was taken from her.
This may seem odd, that a cute family movie would make it on our list, but it is definitely a trigger warning for any mom’s who have lost babies. Again, if you have never experienced the loss of a baby, you may not be able to understand the concept. Spoiler alert for this one too, the basic (and very short) premise of the movie, is that the boss baby is sent down to work with a family. The family is in the business of raising puppies for sale. These puppies are seen to be threats to babies, as they are becoming the preferred family member.
Boss Baby decides in the end to leave the family and go back to work for his company, this means that everyone’s memory of the baby ever being there is erased. Except for the older son, he wants to remember the baby. This hits close to how a lot of mom’s feel when they lose a baby. They feel like the world around them continues with no one remembering their baby that was lost, and feeling like they can not talk about it with anyone.
It is very exciting when a woman discovers that she is pregnant, and she immediately wants to share it with the world. It is also quite normal to not expect them to place the words ‘trigger warning’ at the beginning of their Facebook announcement. None the less, this is a trigger warning for any mom’s who have lost a baby. Now, do not misunderstand them, they are very happy when a friend or family member becomes pregnant, and want to share in their joy, but there is always a pang of pain in their heart.
This is also a trigger warning for any mom who suffers with infertility struggles. Those who have a hard time getting pregnant, also have a hard time staying pregnant. This results in a lot of miscarriages, and your baby is your baby no matter what gestational age. When you have tried for years to fall pregnant, only to lose your baby it is much more difficult to accept the (seemingly) hundreds of women around you who are getting pregnant.
8Memes Gone Too Far
There are no shortages of memes and funny videos on the internet. With the recent start of the school year, there have been a lot of videos made by mom’s about going back to school. While these videos are funny, they can also be hurtful. The video’s usually depict a mom being so thankful that her kids are going back to school, and ‘complaining’ about having her kids home all day, every day over the summer holidays.
While I get the humour in this, I also know that any amount of ‘complaining’ about your children can be seen as hurtful to a mother who has lost their baby. They see it a completely different way than you or I do. They know that they would do anything to have their child here, and that they would never mind the activities that cause so much complaint amongst parents.
A new baby is a blessing to the world, and is a miraculous event. Almost everyone loves little babies, except mom’s who have lost theirs. Now, they do not hate babies, but it is definitely one of the hardest things to accept. It is a hard place to be when you are a mom who has lost a baby. A close friend or family member has just had a baby, and you want more than anything to be happy for them, but you can not swallow the pain you feel.
It is a large trigger warning when a new baby comes around, when a mom holds this baby she will not be able to forget that she should have had a baby in her arms. My best friend lost her baby when she was 5 months pregnant, and I had a newborn baby. It was a difficult position to be in, and I can only imagine her pain as I tried to be there for her while I had to breastfeed my newborn baby
With new babies, comes baby showers. These events are normally filled with excitement and joy and everyone is happy. If you have invited a mother who has just lost her baby, then you should place a large trigger warning on the invitation. Keep in mind that a trigger warning is not telling a woman not to read something. It is simply giving them the chance to collect their feelings and be prepared for what is about to come.
Being in a room with a pregnant woman can be hard enough, add in all the baby clothes, toys and accessories and it makes it about ten times worse. As happy as they are for the mama-to-be, they can not swallow that ounce of sadness and grief that they have inside them for what they have lost. It may also be a time, where people come and offer condolences for your loss if they have not seen the mother until then.
Who knew even just shopping would need a large trigger warning for mom’s who have lost their babies. This is the importance of having empathy and seeing the world through their eyes. A mother who has just lost her baby, may be out at her local target doing some shopping and all of a sudden walks by the baby section. This can be heart breaking. Her mind will immediately go to all of the things she wanted to buy for her baby, and now can not.
Back to my close friend, after she delivered her stillborn baby, her breasts started to leak milk. She needed to buy some breast pads, but could not even face going into a baby store or a baby section of a store to buy them. It would just have been way to painful. Since I was nursing, I had some to spare and she thanked me for saving her a lot of heartbreak.
4The Whole World
The whole world needs a trigger warning for a mom who has lost her baby. For anyone who has just lost a baby or is struggling with fertility, the outside world seems to be full of babies and pregnant woman. You can not even walk down the street without seeing dozens of reminders about what you have lost. It can be heartbreaking.
Now, we know that the world can not change to fit what you need it to be for your own emotional well-being. This doesn’t make it any less painful, and a woman can consider there to be a trigger warning every time she leaves the house. This also has nothing to do with there being more woman getting pregnant or having babies now than before, it just stands out to you more and you notice it more than you ever would.
3April Fool’s Day
I am just going to say it, April fool’s day will always be considered a trigger warning for any mom who has lost her baby. Especially on social media. There have been multiple please for people to not play the type of prank that involves announcing a ‘fake’ pregnancy. The number does seem to have gone down, but they are still out there and this is very insensitive to all those mom’s out there.
To them, pregnancy and expectant babies are nothing to joke about. It is not a joke to them, it is something that they take very seriously and do not want to see dozens of pregnancy announcements on facebook, to then realize that they are all pranks. It takes the whole pregnancy and motherhood for granted and is just not something that should be joked about.
One of the most exciting things about expecting babies is the process of choosing a name for your little. Whether it is a family name, passed down through generations, or it is a completely unique name, we cherish their name. It can become a trigger warning quickly for a mom who has lost their baby to hear their little one’s name uttered.
Whether it be on TV, or at the mall or coffee shop, hearing the name of your little one will always be a trigger warning. You have imagined what your child’s life would be with that name, and when you hear it said in public you are suddenly reminded you will not utter that name again. You won’t call it out at the park, or even just whisper it into their ears.
Triggers are a normal part of grieving, they are to be expected. Losing an infant or child is probably one of the most heartbreaking things a person would have to endure, and it is normal to expect their to be triggers. We try and place trigger warnings on as many things as we can, but it also important to remember that trigger warnings can come out of nowhere.
Triggers can be sound, sight or smell. It can even just be a moment of remembrance when you see the colour pink after losing a little girl. What is important, is for a grieving mother to expect their to be triggers, and to understand that they are normal. The best thing you can do is prepare for any triggers, and make sure you have someone to talk to when a trigger hits. Someone you can call and relieve some of the burden.
Sources: wantedchosenplanned.com, chicagonow.com
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