Those of you who are going through challenges in family-building likely understand what I mean when I say that this process is full of cumulative loss. You may have experienced losses of varying degrees that range from medical diagnoses, to disappointments, to pregnancy loss. Then, there was that comment the nurse or friend said that effected you. To the moment you decided to stop a particular medical intervention and change course. And everything in between.
Every person experiences a unique set of losses from…
- Loss of a problem-free pregnancy
- Loss of control over their bodies
- Loss of choice
- Loss of their imagined child
- Loss of the idealized vision of their family
- Loss of feeling connected to who they are or to their partners
- Loss of connection to family and friends
- Loss of hope
Miscarriages, unexpected genetic diagnosis, terminations and stillbirths each carry with them a specific kind of heartache. These losses can chip away at our self-esteem and our lives in ways that can leave us feeling bereft and alone.
Therapy offers a space for you to work through losses that have accumulated over the course of your family-building process. It is important to give these losses a name. It helps to honor and discover whatever feelings and meanings are associated with them. It is ultimately a goal to find ways to move beyond the losses via ritual, remembrance or just talking about them so that they are out of the shadows. My patients find that when they fold these losses into their lives, they are able to make clear choices, move forward with meaning and purpose, and feel more connected to themselves and loved ones.
“She made brave look beautiful & strong look invincible. She walked with the universe on her shoulders & made it look like a pair of wings”