Friday, August 15, 2008

Why I Hate the Term "Stillborn"

Some things really bother me. One of them is the use of the term "stillborn".
I HATE when people say "Oh the woman who had a stillborn"
For me it is completely different to saying "Oh the woman whose baby was stillborn"

Calling them "stillborns" PISSES ME OFF.
They are not a different breed.
They are not a different species.
They are BABIES.
Yes, babies who were not born alive but I hate the way people refer to them as if they are so fundamentally different.

And yes, I also hate when people refer to "the gays", "the aborigines" etc.
They are gay PEOPLE. Aboriginal PEOPLE. STILLBORN BABIES.

Not just "stillborns"

To me it puts them in another category, a lesser category than all the other babies.
I was just reading an online forum about stillbirth and miscarriage where a woman said "I have just stumbled across a post by a woman who had a stillborn at 38 weeks" - and I wanted to strangle that woman. She did not have a stillborn. She had a baby. She did experience a stillbirth, but she didnt have a stillborn. Don't ask me why it's different, but to me it is, and to me that is so freaking offensive.

I'm aware I make no sense.

17 comments:

mrsmuelly said...

I can see how that would be offensive. I feel the same way when people refer to the birth of Cooper or Brayden as "your miscarriage". I didn't miscarry a baby...I gave birth! So, thank you for the insight. I will definitely be more aware of stillborn babies in the future. (It's the little things, you know)

c. said...

It is different. Absolutely. Take offense. You have every reason to.

Sassy said...

You make perfect sense. It's demeaning. He was a baby, being stillborn is something that happens - like a car accident - that doesn't define who he was.

Holli said...

I agree with Wendy. I HATE when people refer to my loss as my "miscarriage". To me, it's like they say that to make it seem less horrible. Like I lost a fetus, not a child.

But, on the other hand, I was estatic when they officially labled Brenna as stillborn. Before that they termed it a late term miscarriage, and it made me sick to my stomache. I don't know why. For some reason, knowing that she was legally stillborn makes me feel validated.

Holli said...

I know it's hard to explain, but I do understand. When people refer to "your miscarriage" I want to punch them in the face. I want to yell at them, "I think you mean my BABY!" She is my daughter. I wish people would would stop using other words to describe her just to make themselves more comfortable.

G said...

Oh see, I think I may have used this language myself. I just dont think about it much, as long as the word miscarriage isnt being used. M and I have trouble sometimes just saying his name.... William. This really did happen, didnt it?

Natalie said...

Yes. I'm the same way. It's something that happened to him... it is not HIM. He - my baby - was stillborn. He isn't "a stillborn". There is a significant difference and I definitely have felt the same way... just never quite put it into words.

Aunt Becky said...

I do understand. It diminishes that Caden WAS your BABY. A BABY.

My friend Amy said something like "still born but born still" when she describes her William.

Lissa Lane said...

I completely agree!! I was on a board yesterday and someone posted 'My friend had a miscarriage at 36 weeks' and I was like WTF!!! And I admit I tried REALLY hard to be nice about it but I was flaming about it. I told her that after 20 weeks it's not a miscarriage. It's a BABY and this poor child died before birth and the BABY would be a Stillborn BABY. UGH I was pissed

Olive Lucy said...

prolly not goi g to share any new insghts but I wanted to send you some love.

Rebekah said...

I understand where you're coming from but I've never thought about it that way. When we lost Levi the term that really got me was "fetal demise"- the doctor couldn't seem to bring himself to say baby at all. I feel there's a time and place for medical terminology so that if another doctor reviews the records everyone is on the same page but don't tell me that at 37 weeks I've experienced a fetal demise.

Ange said...

Oh yes i completely understand. It just sounds so much less meaningful. This is why I also say my baby died. Not to be an attention seeking drama queen but because if i say he died inside of me or he was born still or something people are more likely to think of a miscarriage.

Mrs. Mother said...

I wouldn't like that comment either. Thanks for visiting my blog. I'm heartbroken over the loss, but I am glad she will not suffer. I was so worried about that.

Lollipop Goldstein said...

It actually makes perfect sense. It's reducing this complex and wonderful human down to this one fact. It's a baby and calling it simply a stillborn makes it a moment of time rather than someone who was held.

Lollipop Goldstein said...

I forgot to add, would you email me to talk about Bridges? Thetowncriers@gmail.com

Dr. Joanne Cacciatore said...

Indeed, this is such a powerful concept. Thank you so much, and I am so very, very sorry...I hope the days are gentle as you remembering your precious Caden.

Anonymous said...

I also lost my baby son. He was 39 weeks old. I felt something was wrong and drove to the GYN and he had no heartbeat. They couldn't determine how long he was gone but he will always be our baby Kaiden. He was so perfect, he also had cuts on his eyes, along with a gash above his lip and many other places but he was so beautiful, so peaceful, so perfect. He will always be our baby, our son, an angel we never met in person. I am sorry for your loss and hope time helps you. We just lost him 3 weeks ago today and hope one day to have another baby to love just as much as I love him.

 

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