I want to write a longer post today about the strife we saw in the community yesterday. For now. This is a place holder. I will update more later. If you aren’t sure what I am talking about, I have links and thoughts on my Facebook page. I find myself writing short thoughts more often there.
When we got Noah’s diagnosis, the TFMR communities were the only places I went. I didn’t feel right going into a loss community while I was still pregnant. I was incredibly grateful for the TFMR communities for helping me prepare for my induction. For letting me know it was ok to call NILMDTS, and to have my oldest meet his brother for the only time, and to buy clothes for him. That it was ok to make as many memories as I could. To remind me that this was my only chance to sing him songs, or rock him, or kiss him.
But after we came home, I needed more. The TFMR communities were small. I needed a place where there was someone available now. I needed to “meet” moms who had also just gone through loss as recently as I had. And I needed a wide audience to share Noah’s story with. Because isn’t that what we all want? To share our children with as many people as we possibly can? To have them say, your child is loved and will be remembered?
But it took a lot for me to reach out. My OB gave me the name of a local mom who’s son was stillborn at 41w. I didn’t call. I was afraid that she wouldn’t consider my loss a loss because I chose the timing. I was told of a local child loss support group. But I was afraid to go. I was given the same woman’s name by multiple people, but it took one who knew her personally to assure me that she would not judge before I could call.
I was still terrified. I took an anti-anxiety pill before that call.
She was wonderful. Welcoming. We still talk frequently about our sons.
But I still needed more. I was so raw in those early days, and even though one woman accepted my story, I knew not everyone would. Before asking to join any loss group on Face book, I read the rules. See if it said anything about TFMR or abortion. I would message the moderators. I would tell them my story, and ask if I would be welcomed. I held my breath waiting for someone to say no, but they never did. I am so incredibly thankful for that.
I began to think that maybe I was wrong, that maybe everyone would recognize my loss for what it was.
Yesterday proved me wrong. I saw some of the ugliest sides of our community. I (along with other TFMR moms) were told that we were not “real BLMs.” I woke up yesterday morning to more negative comments than positive.
If any of the times that I apprehensively reached out I had received a reaction like the ones that I saw yesterday, it would have crushed me. I probably wouldn’t have reached out again.
I also saw something amazing yesterday. As the day wore on, more positive comments came in. Both on the post, and around the community. I hope that if any moms who new to the community read that yesterday the positives outweighed the negative and they are able to find the support they need like I did.