Jump to content
Home
Forum
Join Us
Articles
About Us
Tapestry

Any advice greatly appreciated


 Share

Recommended Posts

We have just been told that one of our parents gave birth on Friday and sadly the baby passed away a couple of hours later. The parents are bringing the 2 other children into nursery this afternoon as they want to try and keep a stable routine for them. To be honest, i'm not sure how to manage this. How do we support the parents and the children? how do i support my staff? My staff are all quite strong, unlike me, i'm a mess just writing this! If any of you have been through similar situations i would greatly appreciate any advice. Thank you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes, we had a f amily who suffered a stillbirth and in fact, so did my sister and one of our families suffered a cot death of a twin. Everyone will need support............a shoulder to cry on. You will need to know what the parents have told their other children and then make sure you say the same things. One of the saddest things we had to deal with was the child saying to me' mummy and daddy are always crying, why are they sad?' and i simply respnded by saying that ' they are sad that X has died, but they won't always cry,one day they will be smiley again'.which was true. If questions arise about why the baby died, then again, take your lead from the parents ( even if you don't agree with what they have told their children, this is not a time for you to instil your own beliefs). Be as aware as you can, the children might not appear fazed at all.........and on the other hand, their behaviour might change completely ( wetting/soiling/tantrums/quiet/withdrawn) the important thing is normailty as far as possible. This is an awful thing to have happened, but they need to know that as far as possible, everything in their world is secure. And, it's ok to cry, even in front of the parents, even if they seem dry-eyed about it. The death of a child is hard on everyone. The worst thing is to ignore the parents ( I know of people who crossed the road to avoid them simply because they didn't know what to say., when a simple, I'm sorry to hear about the baby would have been enough). Good luck. weep if you have to, keep lots of tissueshandy and be ready with that shoulder to cry on x

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi AliceinWonderland,

What a tragedy ... I've no experience in supporting families through this but as far as the children are concerned I would want to know that they have been told and what they understand so that I can be sure I am being consistent with my explanations.

 

I think Narnia has answered too .... I knew someone would be along to give you advice and support x

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you, good advice as always. I'm not actually in work today, which is probably a good thing as i'm useless with things like this, i'm still sat here crying now, thank god my deputy is stronger than me! I've asked her to confirm with parents what they have told the children so we can do the same and also to contact our LA advisors to see if there is any advice they can give.

Thank you to you all.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It is hard, especially when you have been seeing mum throughout the pregnancy and get to know them.

 

Narnia has said it all very well.

 

We also found to keep things as normal as possible at the setting for the children at nursery. Follow their lead and the parents. We spoke to parents, condolences/ hug whatever they needed, and asked what they had told the children (not in hearing of the children).

 

Must say a lot of the time the children didn't talk about it at all in the setting.. others wanted to chat about it, (but in that case it was a sibling a year younger so they knew them well and was a person they could talk about)

 

We also asked what they wanted the other parents to know.. and did they want us to tell them etc.. in one case they brought the child in early or late to avoid the other parents until they were ready to deal with the questions.. or a different door also worked ..

 

Everyone deals with this so differently , just be yourself and let them know you are there to help if they need it.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am so sorry to hear about your upsetting news. I haven't been in exactly the same situation but I had one child in my Pre-School a few years ago whose mother tragically passed away very suddenly. His father was distraught and the child was almost numb with shock. It broke our hearts to see them in such distress but we carried on and provided both of them with much needed continuity and support and over the following weeks and months, they rebuilt life and managed to cope. It's not easy...but try to be strong. There were times we had to just escape to the office and cry, so I know just how you are feeling. Recently, the dad came up to me and said he would never forget how we had helped him and his son through such a terrible time and it was one of those moments that reminded me why I came into this job.

  • Like 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you everyone for your kind advice, both children came into nursery ok and have played happily all afternoon although i'm sure there will be some reaction at some point, we spoke to Dad and Grandad, told them we are here for them whenever they need us, it doesn't matter if it's a day the children are due in or not, just pop in or ring us anytime, offered to point them in the direction of help and advice which they said they have had lots of help from the hospital. They have told the children that the baby is in the clouds so thats what we will continue with if the question arises. I'm glad that they have brought the children in to keep their routine. I spoke to the SANDS helpline who were very helpful and have emailed me lots of things for advice to help my staff and to help the parents and children, so feel much better prepared now. i know these things do happen but i think i pushed it to the back of my mind as it's not something you want to think about.

Thank you again, i knew i could count on you for help and advice. x

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Have come to this thread late and as usual everyone has given truly great advice. We had a family who's baby died at a month old and we supported the older son in the months afterwards. I can remember feeling very worried at what to say to the Mum, but all you can do is say how sorry you are and not avoid the subject. Happily she went on to have a daughter who joined our setting, but within six months Mum had sadly passed away to cancer. It was devastating, but again, honesty was the best way to help this little girl through. It still makes me so sad thinking about this family, but I know that we helped at a truly traumatic time just by being a consistent place and people to come to. Sounds like you have done all the right things and just by asking, shows how much you care.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh Zigzag, how awful. I truly feel for anyone who goes through losing a loved one. I lost my Dad a few years ago to cancer, gone too soon as is usually the case and i think it has made me a lot more aware of how devastating it is for everyone especially children after seeing how my own children reacted to it. I'm an emotional person and not afraid to show it, which can be a good thing as one parent commented, saying she could see the sparkle in my eyes when i talk about the children. This family seem to have got support around them other than the official ways which is good and i'm sure in time they will manage. I just hope that what ever we do helps as well.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We've just had a child lose her dad. At first we didn't really see any impact but she has started to do a bit of hitting and pushing in preschool and has apparently started soiling herself at home. Mum has a lot on her plate as she has an autistic child in Reception. My heart goes out to them.

 

My niece was stillborn. I think it was particularly tough for my brother as some reason we are so hung up on men showing their feelings. For both of them I think it was silence from others that they found hardest. I think even a bungled expression of sympathy is better than no expression at all. Great advice already and it sounds like you're handling it well.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. (Privacy Policy)