Today marks the first day of Baby Loss Awareness Week 2017. It’s an opportunity for people who have been affected by baby loss to find community with others, to commemorate their babies’ lives, and to raise awareness of the issues surrounding reproductive loss in the UK with the aim of improving support available. It is supported and promoted by a number of charities, three of which are our partners on the Death Before Birth Project: ARC, the Miscarriage Association, and SANDS.
The Death Before Birth project has been running for a little over a year. We research the experiences of people in England who have experienced miscarriage, termination for fetal anomaly, and stillbirth. In particular, we are interested in the decisions they make throughout the process, including how they choose to mark and commemorate their loss, and the factors involved in making these decisions. The linguists on our team are also interested in the language the bereaved and those who support them use to talk about their experiences and their emotions. Over the next four days, we will be publishing a series of short blog posts here, explaining what we have already found out, what we are currently working on, and the next steps for the project. You can also read more about us and our work on the About the Project page.
Baby Loss Awareness Week ends on Sunday 15th October (International Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day) with the Global Wave of Light at 7pm. Participants light a candle at 7pm, wherever they are in the world, and leave it burning for at least one hour to remember babies who have died. The Death Before Birth project team participated a little early, by lighting three candles in our team meeting this morning. We will be ‘lighting’ them virtually again, here on the blog, on Sunday.