I can’t get my picture to upload. You can check out my FB for it if you want.
There are a lot of “what not to say” lists. And I think I’ve heard them all and then some. People don’t know what to say. I think the best advice I can give is to validate their grief. One of my favorite loss quotes is “It hurts because it matters.”
A month after Noah was born I had two friends tell me exactly the same thing, almost word for word. It still sticks out in my mind as the single best thing anyone said. They said “You are my family, so he is my family. And I am so sad that I didn’t get to meet him.” That one thing said so much. It allowed space for my grief. It said that Noah, that his life, that he as a person mattered.
At a time when so many people said nothing, never mentioned his name, never included him in a count of my children. Their grandchildren, nephews, what have you. They said he mattered. And that they were grieving with me. And isn’t that what empathy is?