Talking about Loss -
a Positive Birth Movement evening
It's hard to find someone who hasn't experienced grief or loss connected in some way with childbirth - and those who haven't will know someone who has.
Here are a few questions and answers about the evening.
Who is this for?
In short, all are welcome. The evening is aimed at people who have experienced loss related to pregnancy, birth or parenting and who would like to share something about it, acknowledge it or support others to do so within a safe and accepting environment.
So it's for people who have had miscarriages?
Absolutely yes, but there are many other kinds of loss. It might be an early pregnancy loss, a miscarriage, stillbirth or the death of a child. It might be a loss of expectation - perhaps you grieve the birth you wanted but could not have, being able to breastfeed for as long as you wanted, or the parenting experience you were expecting. Maybe you have wanted children - or more children - but they haven't happened or the journey to being a parent has caused you pain. Whether it's an ongoing situation, a recent experience or something that happened half a lifetime ago, you're welcome.
Do I have to tell everyone what happened?
No, not unless you want to. We will create a safe space for sharing stories and honouring experience, but those who just want to support others, or who are not sure how much they want to share, are very welcome. We will make sure we know who wants to talk and who doesn't, there will be no pressure - and we'll try to ensure everyone who wants to share a story gets a chance. We would like to ensure that everyone who comes also understands that what people share remains within the group.
Why the Positive Birth Movement? My story's not very positive...
So the background is that Jane (hypnobirthing teacher and doula) and I (Meriel, NCT antenatal teacher and pregnancy and postnatal yoga practitioner) have been facilitating our local Positive Birth Movement group for several years now - it's a lovely, intimate space to hear different stories and get information to help women get ready for (self-defined) good births. The idea for this session came from a Positive Birth group member, who has a child but has also experienced miscarriages, and felt it would work well to have a similar space to talk and share about them. We understand that there will be a mixture of emotions - including some negative ones - about these situations and that's okay. There will be tissues on hand! The 'positive' aspect of it (and the reason we wanted to do it under the Positive Birth Movement banner) is that it can be helpful to share your story - for yourself or maybe for someone else in the room - and more widely for society, which tends to be silent about these things which have such an impact on us.
What else do I need to know?
Please let us know if you're planning to come, so we can prepare the space and make sure we have enough refreshments. You can sign up on our facebook event https://www.facebook.com/events/590026984533918/ (there won't be a public list on it of who is attending) or email Meriel - firstname.lastname@example.org. No worries if plans change though. There will be things to eat and drink - please let us know if you have any special dietary requirements so we can ensure no-one is left out.
Please be aware that we are not counsellors. We will listen and facilitate, and we will have a range of resources and information about sources of further help available for anyone who thinks that might be helpful.
We will include a small 'act of remembrance' - a way of marking and giving importance to these losses - as part of the evening. This will be gentle and non-religious and participation is totally optional.
We do hope you'll join us.
Meriel and Jane would like to invite you to join us for a special Positive Birth Movement meeting focused on acknowledging the loss and sharing the stories.
Monday 13th March 2017, from 8pm at Meriel's house -
12 High Street, Bassingbourn SG8 5NE
Image copyright Amy Haderer,