With Mother’s Day approaching, we understand that this can be a difficult time for mums and anyone affected by pregnancy loss or the death of a baby. We are here to support you.
We know from bereaved families, that have experienced baby loss, days like Mother’s Day can be full of mixed emotions.
The run-up can be worrying for mothers, fathers and relatives who have experienced the death of a baby and may need help to express how they feel and what they need.
Family, friends, and work colleagues may feel unsure how to handle the approach of Mother's Day with bereaved parents. We have some tips below about things you can do to show you care.
“I really appreciate my friends and family acknowledging that it might be a bittersweet day for us. Sometimes it's a lovely day, sometimes there are melancholy moments. Even a simple hug emoji can feel supportive.”
- Lorna, bereaved mum
Ideas on self care around Mother's Day
Mother's Day can be full of grief if your baby has died, whenever this happened. It may be that last year was spent in expectant joy during your pregnancy, or that you imagined you would hold them this Mother's Day and celebrate with friends and family.
You may be surrounded by others who celebrate with their children or wonder whether you are thought of as a mother by people around you.
Whether you miss your baby or the role you would have in his or her life, Sands knows you are still a mum and we are here for you.
Here are some suggestions that may help you to cope:
1. Take it one day (or even hour) at a time. The anticipation of a big day can worry you, but you may find that small things can get you through the day itself.
2. Do something to help you feel connected to your baby. You are still a mother and your bond with your child, whether they are here or not, is something to be proud of.
You may want to talk about your baby or babies and say their name(s). We have created some template social media graphics that you can download and personalise.
3. Think of someone you can call if you feel sad in advance of the day and ask them to be available for you.
4. Connect safely with nature by going for a walk or appreciating . Many parents feel their baby's presence in wildlife and plants, which are starting to blossom and can be comforting to be around.
5. Write down how you feel and make this a part of your memory box or baby keepsakes. You can add this to a Mother's Day card to yourself or a partner and it will be a memory of how you kept your baby or babies in mind on special days.
6. Read or listen to poems or music. Some people find poetry, songs or other pieces of writing helpful in processing and coping with their grief.
Here are two readings of much-loved poems that you may wish to watch.
6. Use our Online Support channels. Join our Online Community or Facebook Support Group, which provide safe spaces for bereaved parents to connect with each other and share their feelings 24 hours a day.
Ways you can help support others
The simplest of actions and words can make the most difference. If you are a relative or friend, letting bereaved parents know you are thinking of them can go a long way.
They are still a mum, and the saddest days are those when that is forgotten, or not acknowledged.
Sending someone a card is a lovely way to show you are thinking of them. A range of cards are available from our online shop.
"I have certain friends who every year message me on mother's day just saying "thinking of you" and that means so so much to me.
Everyone is different though and I know I had friends who didn't want that card, but a simple acknowledgement meant the world to me."
- Heatherjane Coombs, Xander's mum
The support we offer
Our bereavement support services are here for you in the run up to Mother's Day and on the day.
Sands Helpline opening hours:
Mon - Fri 10am - 3pm
Tues & Thurs evenings 6pm - 9pm
Sun 10th March 10am -12pm
t: 0808 164 3332
Sands’ Bereavement Support Book provides advice, help and support for bereaved families and each section focuses on a specific subject.
Wishing you a gentle Mother's Day.