What A Grieving Mother Wants for Mother's Day

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10 Simple Suggestions for Comforting a Grieving Mother on Mother's Day

While Mother’s Day is generally considered a day of celebration, it can be a difficult holiday for mothers who are grieving the loss of a pregnancy or child of any age. Yet despite their grief, one study reveals many would be comforted by simple acts of remembrance.

The Comfort Company (http://www.thecomfortcompany.net), an online retailer of unique sympathy gifts, recently conducted a web-based survey asking grieving mothers, “What can others say, do or give that would bring you comfort on Mother’s Day?”.

According to company founder, Renee Wood, over 80 percent of the nearly 200 respondents answered, “Recognize that I am a mother” to the question. In addition, nearly every mother surveyed wanted their loss to be remembered with a card, phone call, gift or hug.

"The suggestions given by these moms are simple and straight forward," reports Wood, a former neonatal intensive care social worker. "I think we all know a mother whose life has been touched by child loss and could be comforted by a gentle gesture of remembrance."

In response to the heartfelt answers given by the survey participants, TheComfortCompany.net has issued a list of the ten most important things we can do to help a grieving mother find comfort this Mother’s Day:

1. Recognize that they are a mother: Offer a hug and a "Happy Mother’s Day". Send a simple Mother’s Day card to let them know you remember that they are a mother even though their child is not with them physically.

2. Acknowledge that they have had a loss: Express the message, "I know this might be a difficult day for you. I want you to know that I am thinking about you today." Removing the wall of silence gives a grieving mother permission to talk about her child.

3. Use their child’s name in conversation: Saying the name of a child who has died is like music to a grieving mothers ears. One mother suggested, "Say his name and ask me my fondest memory of him from past Mother’s Days".

4. Plant a living memorial: This is a wonderful day to plant a tree or flower bulbs in memory of the child. This is something that will live on as a beautiful reminder in the years to come.

5. Visit the gravesite: Many mothers felt that it was "extremely thoughtful" when others visited their child’s gravesite and left flowers or a small pebble near the headstone.

6. Light a candle: Let the mother know you will light a candle in memory of their child on Mother’s Day.

7. Share a memory or pictures of the child: Give the precious gift of a memory. One mother wrote that the "greatest gift you can give is a heart felt letter about my child and your most lovely moments with them".

8. Send a gift of remembrance: Many mothers suggested appropriate gifts of remembrance that would bring them comfort. These items included: an angel statue, a piece of jewelry, a memory box, a memorial candle, a picture frame, a library book donation, an ornament, anything personalized with the child’s name or a date, books on grief, a garden stone or a toy donation in the child’s name.

9. Don’t try to minimize the loss: Avoid using any cliches that attempts to explain the death of a child. (i.e. "God needed another angel.") Secondly, don’t try to find anything positive about the loss (i.e. "You still have two healthy children" or "She’s in a better place").

10. Encourage Self-Care: Self-care is an important aspect of the "healing the mind and spirit effort" according to several mothers. Encourage a grieving mother to take care of herself. Give her a gift certificate to a day spa or any place where she can be pampered.

For more information or to obtain additional grief-related resources, please visit: http://www.thecomfortcompany.net.


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Renee Wood