10 Thoughts of Hope for the Parent of a Stillborn or Miscarried Child

10 Thoughts of Hope for the Parent of a Stillborn or Miscarried Child

10 Thoughts of Hope for the Parent of a Stillborn or Miscarried Child

On November 1 of this year, Mr. Pete and I will commemorate the tenth anniversary of the short life and death of our sixth child, Raphael. I can’t believe how quickly the time has passed or how much things have changed since then.

Since that time, I have tried to reach out to other women going through similar situations. The church knows that if a baby has died they can call me and I’ll be very willing to come to the funeral or the calling hours. I try to bring a copy of Mothers’ Manual with me to give to the grieving mother so that she can have it, with the hopes that it will bring her comfort.  There are some beautiful prayers in there specifically for the loss of a child and the resignation to accept that loss.

I bought five of them about two years ago, and have given every single one of them away. Yesterday I went to the brief calling hours and funeral for a little baby that just never breathed on his own. His parents  were there, all sad and numb with grief.  I gave her the little prayer book and I tried not to say anything stupid. I mainly just said that I was so sorry for her pain and that I wished that I could make it better.  With the time constraints and a line of other people wishing to pay their respects there wasn’t much else to say.

But to every mom who has suffered a stillbirth, here are 10 things I wish I could tell them.

1. It is okay to be sad.  We don’t “do” grief very well in this culture and I really think that’s a shame.  Nonetheless, losing a baby and all of the hopes and dreams that go with it can be a shattering experience, and there is nothing wrong with having those feelings of deep sadness and grief.

2. Time will make it better.  The images and events fade into our memories and the intensity of the pain starts to lessen. It doesn’t make you less of a mother to start to feel a little happiness in your life when you’re ready for it. The grief will still come in waves,  (I have been surprised at how much more I have thought about my own son now that the 10 year mark is coming up), but those waves will space out and when they do come, eventually you won’t feel as if you are overwhelmed by them.

3. Don’t feel obligated to pretend that you don’t feel the way you feel. People want you to feel better so that they can feel better. The scripture says to “Mourn with those who mourn.”  Don’t be afraid to remind them of that.

4. Take care of yourself.  Eat, exercise, get dressed.  These things really help.

5. The loss of my child will changed me permanently.  It made me stronger and gave me a different perspective on everything.  Nothing like finding the answer to “what’s the worst that could happen?” to make everything else seem not so bad.  I found a new appreciation for the other people in my life and life’s little tragedies just didn’t seem as tragic. In many ways, living through a stillbirth made me wiser.

6. It was difficult and even painful to be around other pregnant women or babies for a long time.  Be prepared for that and guard your heart accordingly. It won’t always be that way but it will be for a time.

7.  You will always be your baby’s mother.  Death didn’t change that. Don’t be afraid to commemorate your child, perhaps with a picture or piece of jewelry or some other memorial.  Or perhaps you’ll develop a little ritual or tradition to remember the baby on his or her birthday. The baby had a life, albeit a short one. It is good to honor and remember that. I always remember my baby’s birthday

8.  If you look around and are observant, you’ll see signs that some of the other women around you have had a loss. Maybe a little piece of jewelry or a tattoo or something will give it away. I’ve met some wonderful women and heard some amazing stories asking about a little angel pin or necklace.

9.   No way around it, the next pregnancy will be scary, especially around the time of the first loss. I remember being terrified during my only ultrasound with the pregnancy after my stillbirth. I was so afraid that they would find something wrong. I think it’s normal to be cautious and even scared.  But I’d rather live with a little fear than to not try again and live with a lifetime of regret.

10.  It may take some time, but eventually, if you’re looking for it, you may just come to see your baby’s part in God’s plan.  My son’s little life had meaning and prepared me for so many other things in my life.  And his siblings have a little intercessor waiting for them in heaven.  Maybe he was there to meet my mother when she passed away too?  I may not know the entire plan but I’m just sure that what ever happened, even though it was sad and painful, was part of God’s goodness, even if I don’t always understand it all completely.

Copyright 2012 Elena LaVictoire


About Author

Elena LaVictoire is a graduate of Baker College and a retired medical transcriptionist. She is married and homeschooled six children. Elena is a public speaker on the topics of marriage, homeschooling, and confirmation preparation. She was also a contributing author to The Catholic Mom’s Prayer Companion. Elena practices and performs with her flute and records with the Peace Together Choir. She blogs at MyDomesticChurch.com.


  1. Thank you for this. I just recently lost my son at 16 weeks. I do have two other children, but he was my third miscarriage. And this time I am barely keeping it together.

  2. Thank you. I will share this with my daughter who just has a stillbirth at 28 weeks. I pray that this helps her and that in time she too, will have another child. Bless you.

  3. Rhayezelle Reyes on

    Thank you for your blog, I had lost my baby 2 weeks before the due date . Reading your blog made me realize that God has a plan whatever its reasons are we just have to keep our faith to him. I hope in God’s time we will be able to have a healthy baby of our own. I miss my baby so much that it always keep me in tears every time I think of him. Its been 1 year now and its seem the pain is still new. Thank you again for your blog, God Bless

  4. Vanessa Gomez on

    Thank you. Just lost my baby yesterday I was 36 weeks. I’m so heartbroken and this is still so anew and surreal. But I will definitely keep all this engraved in my head to help me cope with my grief.

  5. Your Comment l lost my Beautiful princess a week before birth. It’s been so painful to me. I cry, I feel so lonely, I feel bad seeing other women with children. I can’t stop to ask mom’s with children age of their babies. I cry all the time when Am alone. She could be 1year 3 months now. I miss you my Baby Girl

  6. I am.a Mother of 6 children 1 girl 5 boys, recently lost my 2nd Baby girl @ 24 weeks a few days ago..it as been so painful for me.

  7. I recently lost my baby boy at 34 weeks and 5 days and the doctor had to perform a hysterectomy to save my life. I cry every day and sometimes ask myself why me? New Years supposed to be about joy happiness and love but That day doctors was trying to save my life. Reading your blog is very helpful and seeing that I’m not the only one living that pain is hopeful. Thank you

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