Hello, Hope

Excuse me while I speak honestly, without any filter, on the topic of subsequent pregnancies and the lack of support available for parents. It is something that has been bugging me for quite some time.

If you’re subsequently pregnant after a loss, you know how difficult it is to explain the challenges that come with being pregnant again to someone who has not experienced it.

There is a strange mixture of joy and hope mixed with utter fear and confusion, and often a revival of the grief for the lost child. It’s a completely unique experience, and can be such a contrast compared to the emotions felt during a first pregnancy, before the innocence was gone.

During my time in the local bereaved community one thing keeps coming up time and time again: the desire to try again, and the fear and isolation that can bring with it. It takes a lot - and I mean A LOT - of courage to put your heart on the line again.

Having said that, I have been really frustrated by the lack of support for parents who are pregnant after a loss. Sometimes it feels like they’re forgotten, as though they are pregnant again so now they can be happy, they can move on, they don’t need support anymore.

It's so wrong.

And it’s nobody’s fault. It is acknowledged that support for subsequent pregnancies is needed by really amazing organizations here in Ontario who just lack the funding or internal network to get subsequent pregnancy groups off the ground at this time. They’re coming, but just not soon enough.

Which is where Hello, Hope comes in, a new Facebook support group for subsequent pregnancies and those with rainbow babies who are in the Greater Toronto Area. It is specific to the GTA at this time because my hope is that I can arrange for local meet-ups within the GTA, depending on need. Online and telephone support can be so helpful, and there are resources for those mediums of support, but in my own experience I find face-to-face support to be invaluable.

So if you’re pregnant after a loss or have had a rainbow baby(ies) and are looking for support from others who have been through the same experience, come join us. I’d love to see this blossom into a strong community of love and support.

And as always, if you’re looking for birth or postpartum support for your subsequent pregnancy, you know where to find me. <3

Ashley HarrisonComment