On Loss

I’ve been asked why I don’t talk about the loss of the twins more on the blog. I’m not trying to hide it, I just have no desired to discuss it. I don’t talk about it much in real life, I feel like it would be disingenuous to dwell on it here. I let their due date pass with nary a blog mention, does that make me a bad blogger? No. I just didn’t want to talk about it. Which is fine, by the way. Everyone grieves in their own way. My way tends to be to compartmentalize and box up my feelings after an initial cry fest.

I don’t tend to even talk about it in person. Is that right or wrong? I don’t believe there is a right and wrong. I’ve been told it will come back and haunt me later (thanks over personal person I used to work with), but I’ve always dealt with grief this way. She insinuated this way back in 2004 and I haven’t been haunted yet. Maybe it comes from losing my first grandparent when I was only 9.

I’ve seen a lot of very close and well loved people die in just the last 8 years, when I start to list them, as I always do, my world starts to falter. The list is just much too long.
Dad
Gram (my last remaining grandparent)
Mom
My Aunt Sally
My Other Aunt Sally
My husband’s Grandma
My husband’s Grandpa
My husband’s Grandpa Joe
My husband’s Uncle
The twins
Uncle Tom

And so I remain silent. I refuse to think about it and so I don’t talk about it. My friend Diana is much more open than I am. I strongly encourage you to read her amazing post Nice Girls Don’t Write About Dead Babies. Go read the words of a brave, brave mother. And then come back here tomorrow while I compartmentalize and ignore my feelings about having more dead children than living and talk about cookies or something.

Grief is intensely personal, especially baby loss or stillbirth. No one can do it wrong.

Edited to add: This may have been unclear. This isn’t about how I grieve or how Diana grieves. This is about other people thinking they have a right to judge grief.

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17 Responses to “On Loss”

  1. Leah says:

    I would never want you to feel pressure to talk or write about something you aren’t comfortable with. It’s your life, your loss and your decision. Anyone who tells you how you should be grieving deserves a punch in the trachea.

    [Reply]

    Amy Reply:

    Thank you. And I read this while making my coffee, but before I drank it and could not for the life of me figure out why we were punching people in the “tray chee” Coffee. I need it.

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  2. molly says:

    You’re right. Grief is intensely personal. What is right for some is wrong for another. I don’t think anyone would fault you for this in the blog world.

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    Amy Reply:

    I completely agree. And I don’t have the most raw or open blog in the first place, so I’m not sure why people expected that to change.

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  3. the grumbles says:

    Grief is so different. If you don’t want to talk about it? Don’t talk about it. Anyone who thinks that you don’t care about something just because you don’t mention it often is way off base. I tend to keep a lot of “personal” stuff to myself. It doesn’t mean it’s not important to me, it’s just none of anyone else’s business.

    [Reply]

    Amy Reply:

    Exactly. Also, I think it is interesting that it can be ok to have so many rights ways to deal with birth and so few acceptable “right” ways to deal with death. Although, technically, I suppose there are indeed wrong ways like killing sprees and the like.

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  4. Eileen says:

    I hate how there is supposed to be a “right” way to deal with things of a sensitive nature, but no one ever agrees with what that right way is. So we all judge each other, wheeeeee. While some people don’t understand your not talking much about loss, there are others that judge those that do share, like Diana, for talking about it. I’m not sure if I’m making any sense. It’s your process, and even within your own family I’m sure everyone has to process everything on their own terms. I hope you never feel like you have to explain yourself, you know unless you want to.

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  5. Spot on. And for the record, you are very brave. Bravo to you for not feeling guilt about the way you grieve — there is no wrong/right way and it’s okay for everyone to do it differently.

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  6. Tannis says:

    I’m with Leah. A punch to the trachea to anyone who dares to tell you you’re doing it wrong. I’m thinking knee caps might be in order too, because WHO DOES THAT?

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  7. 1) I’m sorry hun. That sucks.

    2) As a new reader, I had no idea – AND THAT’S JUST FINE! You don’t owe anybody anything. Anybody who thinks otherwise needs a swift kick to a place a little less pc than the trachea.

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  8. Babe_Chilla says:

    You do it you way, whatever way that is.

    I’m quite sure that most people feel that you not sharing is you not dealing, which is ridiculous because not blogging something doesn’t eliminate it’s existence.

    I also think mostly, people let their morbid curiosity get the best of them and don’t think before they talk. People want to know what is happening. They want to know they participated in your life through the tough times, like as if baring your burden is their right. And so, when you are quiet about your happenings, be it good or bad, they need to pry. The bad stuff is always “juicer” or more wrought with ways they can “help you” so, they focus there. People like to make everything about them, apparently even the way you grieve.

    I’ll admit I was curious as to why you didn’t choose to share for a bit, then thought about it logically and thought that this, above a lot of things, is deeply personal and not something most people have to deal with. This is your life, your story. And, writing things down online makes them permanent, and opens you up to judgment and question. I figured you were just dealing with the circumstance in the best way possible – your own way.

    It’s sad you had to put this post together even, but good for you for staying true to what you need to do, and sharing only what you wanted.

    [Reply]

    Amy Reply:

    I think at one point I did state that I wouldn’t be sharing the explicit details and my rationale. Mostly it is because the internet doesn’t forget and I don’t want Spencer to be able to google it later. I just want my options open in the future when I decide how much to tell him. The whole story is a little awful. I figured I might as well leave my options open.

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  9. There’s plenty I don’t blog about or elude to here and there but get into much. Even in person, ome things I don’t talk about and other things I talk WAY TOO MUCH ABOUT. I don’t even know why certain topics fall into certain categories. You do what you need to do unless it’s making you a mess then do the opposite.

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  10. Emily Y. says:

    I agree with babe_Chilla that people have morbid curiosity. I’ve had similar requests to share more about my miscarriage on the blog… from people who seem well meaning enough, but honestly I agree with you that grieving takes some time. There are lots of thoughts and feelings that I think are too raw to commit to the Internet. Maybe in time I will have the perspective appropriate to share and actually help other women in similar circumstances. But anyone who criticizes the grieving process, no matter how long it takes, has some serious issues in my book.

    [Reply]

    Amy Reply:

    I think it bugs me that people ask. It is one of those things that could be thought about, but not really said you know? Maybe I’m just old fashioned.

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  11. OT and ET says:

    I grieve in the same way. In fact, you’re one of the few people I even told about my miscarriage and that was months afterwards. Not because it’s some big secret that I was hiding from the blog world and not because I didn’t care enough to blog it (more like I cared so much the words felt inadequate). Anyways I just agree with you and want to hug you. It’s too much loss. There’s too much sadness if you start to think about it it becomes overwhelming really quickly. You get to grieve in whatever way works for you and anyone who thinks they get to criticize that and tell you otherwise can fuck off. Seriously. xoxo

    [Reply]

    Amy Reply:

    xoxo

    [Reply]

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