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Mom of Susumu

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22 years ago, I lost my 8 day old son.  I never did have any live births after that, but several miscarriages.  Today, I was talking with my boss and met her sister. The discussion turned to how many children each person at the table had. I began to feel so anxious that someone would ask me how many children I had. Luckily, I did not get that question, this time. 

I have such a hard time with conversations like this. What is a good response, especially when meeting new people?  I don't necessarily feel comfortable revealing such a painful portion of my life to someone I am meeting for the first time. 


Any advice?

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I don't feel I have authority to answer your question , as I lost my only son less than 3 weeks ago, if given the same question I would answer that I have 1 child and depending how comfortable I am with the people I am  speaking with I would expand only if necessary or I felt comfortable. Right now I can't even string a sentence together without crying . But I feel so proud about my son I want to keep on talking about him now as I did when he was still alive. 

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Jannit, Mom of Susumu

Jannit, I agree with you. If anyone asks how many children I have I always reply 2 (I have a daughter).  My son is, was and always will be my son.  He has been gone for 2 years, 9 months but he is my son  and I, like you, will always talk about him. If asked where my children live I always say my daughter lives in Wyoming and my son lives in Heaven. -------because that is how it is.  

We have a very active forum on Loss of a Child under Loss of an Adult Child.  Even though it is labeled "Adult Child" we have several parents who have lost an infant and some of them experienced that loss some time ago.  Mom of Susumu, maybe you can get your questions answered by them or just share as we all do. Jannit, you are so early in your loss and your grief is so raw.  If you would want to join us on this thread please do.  We are not counselors but bereaved parents who have lost a child that come together.  I found this forum about a week after I lost my son when my grief was new and raw and I did not know how I could survive this tragedy.  There are so many kind and compassionate people on here that helped in ways I didn't even know I needed.  In this place we have bonded together to share, and support each other with this loss. When a child dies our world is shattered and we are brought to our knees. The reasons for the losses are many, the lost children are unique and your grief is as unique as was the love of your son.This grief process is one long, emotional roller coaster. Your world has been unbelievably  shaken and all that you know seems to have fallen out from under you.  Right now don't think of how you will get through the rest of your life.  You need to think about the next hour, minute... that is all you can handle right now. No sleep, guilt, anger, sadness, No sleep, guilt, anger, sadness, repeat and throw in some sorrow and despair..... a grieving parent makes their way.  The path is never straight forward.  Someone once told me " SHOW ME A GRIEVING MOTHER AND I WILL SHOW YOU THE BRAVEST WOMAN IN THE WORLD>  SHE HAS LIVED ONE DAY WITHOUT HER CHILD."

not alone.jpg

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momofsusumoo  I am so sorry for the loss of your son and the other little babies it must be very painful for you. That is definitely a loaded question one that we have all faced at some point and one that is very difficult to answer. Also over time you may feel more able to be honest. I always say I have 4 children because I did have 4 children, it is just one is not here on earth anymore. if the conversation continues i am  able to talk about the other three. If the person comments on my fourth child I can now say his name was Tommy and he was 24 but he was killed in an accident. that stops everyone in their tracks they apologise and the conversation usually changes topic. If I am feeling strong that day, and like the person, I may talk a little more in detail but if i am feeling vulnerable that day I leave it at that and then ask about their family. You can say you don't have children if you choose. It does not mean you are denying your son or the other little ones you lost, you are merely protecting yourself from intrusive questions. Then if you get to know that person better you can later on explain that you were not ready to share before but this is your story. I hope you join us on loss of an adult child like Dianne suggests because we are the most active on the forum and will welcome you to share your story and be part of our group. We have all been where you are and share a common feeling of wanting to help others as we have been helped.

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