Monday, December 10, 2012

Losing a child

A family member of mine just lost a child. A baby girl, she was one year's old. We knew this was coming, the doctor had told the family before the baby was born that there was something wrong. Yet it is still sad.

I think the hardest thing for me, is what to say, do for this family member? She lives in Texas we live in Virginia. Should I call? Is a donation to a charity in the name of the baby ok? I am so awful with these things. A good friend of mine, RedHeaded Rover, is fantastic with knowing just the right thing to say to comfort a person - I envy this skill of hers. She is the daughter of a minister, I need to insist she teach me.

Here I am, MashAllah with a healthy baby and my dear sister-in-law has lost her baby, will she even want to hear from me?? Sigh.

5 comments:

Secret Agent Woman said...

Oh, that's so sad. I can only imagine how she must be grieving.

Trying to put myself in her place, I think I'd want you to reach out. But is she a phone person? I'm not, so a card or letter would suit me better. No update about your life and baby, just an expression of how sorry you are for her loss and that you are holding her in your prayers. A donation is fine if you know one she supports. When I miscarried my mother sent me a bouquet of gorgeous white flowers. I found them comforting. What I did NOT find comforting as my own sister in law calling me and keeping me on the phone for an hour talking about how God's ways were mysterious and it was probably for the best and blah blah blah. Since she'd never had a miscarriage herself I wanted to ask her how in the hell she could presume to tell me it was for the best. So, I guess I'd just caution you to choose your words carefully and not try to explain away what happened. Sometimes, "I'm so sorry and I want you to know I'm thinking about you" is best.

Kerry said...

I agree with what was said above.

A card or letter is probably a good place to start unless you already talk on the phone regularly.

I think it's important to let people know we're not ignoring the huge upheavals in their lives. I never know what to say either, and if I'm really stuck for something to say, I'll tend to be honest and admit I don't know what to say, but, as has already been said, that I want them to know I'm thinking of them.

Maybe say you'd be happy to phone sometime or that they're welcome to phone you, but leave it up to them to take up the offer at what is a good time for them.

I guess what I'm saying is that I don't know either, but I think it's important to reach out with love and no judgement or attempts to mitigate something that must be so awful. People surely needed to be surrounded with love without expectations at such time.

I don't know if any of this helps, as I'm rambling on a bit.

JoeinVegas said...

Yes, card with a short written paragraph about how you are sorry for their loss. No donations, most people don't think that means much. Phone call not required.

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Virginia Gal said...

Secret Agent - Thank you those are excellent suggestions.

Kerry - thank you!

Joe - I don't like phone calls myself.