Do I belong here?

by Gill
(South Africa)

I hope this story will be the beginning of healing a deep hurt that has gone unresolved for over 20 years.

In 1981 my husband and I decided with great excitement to start a family. If only excitement was enough to accomplish our goals in life! 5 years and 4 lost pregnancies later we gave up trying and put our name down to adopt. Within a few months we were the proud parents of the most beautiful baby girl. We called her Nicola Kate and she was the apple of our eye. I remember watching her sleep and wondering at the amazing luck I had to be the mother, finally, of this gorgeous little girl. I could hardly believe it. She was sunny and smiley and easy and loved everyone. When she was 4 months old we celebrated with a dedication service in our church and a family lunch.

The next day, her biological mother withdrew her consent to the adoption and a two month battle followed. She left us in November of that year - she had just turned 6 months and it was one of the worst days of my life. We were in shock, sad, confused and just grieving for our daughter, but that was the worst thing. I felt as if we didn't have any right to grieve, because she hadn't died, she just wasn't our daughter any more. Our friends didn't know what to do or say to support us. Clearly they also felt they were on shaky ground. There was little or no affirmation of our grief, no support and we didn't even have the closure of a funeral or memorial service. And so we just tried to ignore our grief and get on with life. Another baby came in to our life and demanded our attention and we learned to just get on with life and tried not to think about that.

Recently we just lost my darling sister-in-law to cancer. She was only 54 and it was such a shock, and I am not doing well coping with the grief. I wonder if this has brought up all that unresolved grief from the loss of Nicky and feel that it is complicating the grief I feel for my sister-in-law. How do I deal with this? Is it valid to feel grief for the loss of a baby that hasn't died? What can I do to resolve that? Even now I feel that maybe I don't have the right to write on this blog where mothers and fathers are dealing with the terrible and real loss of their children through death. If I have offended any of you with my post, please forgive me. My heart goes out to you in your grief, and I pray that you will get the support you need.

Comments for Do I belong here?

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Jun 06, 2011
20 Years
by: Lee

A loss is a loss. Nicola may not have died but her loss was a death to you. My deepest sympathies. To lose a child - I can't imagine.
I came to this page because I am just now facing the reality that grief is the key to my life of severe depression; depression that I have not been able to get therapy or medication to even begin to help. The first traumatic loss was my fiance - a car accident 3 days before Christmas, 6 months before the wedding. Since then I have lost a best friend, mom, dad, Aunt, 2 nephews, 2 cousins and a dearly loved cat - all but my mom's were unexpected and pre-mature deaths. I raised a child alone, worked full time and got a college education. I haven't had time to think, let alone grieve!! I've been married and divorced in the process, too. I don't know how to move through to any other stage of the process. Each new loss throws me back to the start of the process so that I am stuck in the depression stage and it is destroying me. I am now unemployed, hardly able to leave my home and the doctor wants to INCREASE my medications. Not about to happen!!! It sounds like your sister-in-laws death did that to you - threw you back to the start. It is good that you recognize the connection. I wish I had a long time ago. My condolences to you and your sister-in-laws family.

Jun 05, 2011
Sending My Sympathies
by: Evie in Hawaii

Dear Gill,
I am so sorry that you are going through this very difficult time. My thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family. I don't think that you have offended anyone in blogging about Nicola and your sister-in-law. I feel that when I write and get things out in the open, it is one of the first steps in working through my grieving process.

I went through a difficult time when my father and brother passed away. I began to shut my loved ones out and just didn't take care of myself. What I realized in the end: In order for me to love and be there for others, I first had to be there for myself. You deserve the support you need and I know that you will find that in your family, friends, and community.

I send you my prayers across the miles from Hawaii. May you find peace and comfort during this difficult time.

With Aloha,

Jun 05, 2011
Yes! welcome we all lean on each other
by: Anonymous


Everyone is welcome here that feels grief. One grief is not more important or devastating than another. All griefs are just different. The pull oh your heart not wanting or able to do much of anything is something that we share. The memories replay in your mind causing much torture too. Please come here often to vent. You are welcome and understood by those who are also grieving. We try to take one breath one step at a time...

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