Tommy's guest blog, 12/09/2016, by Jess Clasby-Monk
Many of you who contact Tommy’s and bravely share your stories wonder what to call yourself following the loss of your baby.
The absence of your baby means you struggle to know whether to refer to yourself as a mother or father.
Jess from The Legacy of Leo sums up the feeling as “fraud” in an early blog post following the stillbirth of her baby boy, Leo.
“I’m a mother. And I feel like a mother. But what does a new mother look like? It’s a mother with a baby. I see them out and about and I recognise them. And I do not look like that. For my baby is not with me.”
Jess looks back on how she felt in the early, intense days of grief and compares it to how she feels now as she dons her Tiba & Marl Selfish Mother sweater, £10 of which goes to Tommy’s with each sale.
“I was hoping, almost 6 months on, I’d feel different – but it’s all still so true. Motherhood after stillbirth and miscarriage is a complex one. You are the invisible mother. The bereaved mother.”
Tommy’s collaboration with Selfish Mother is helping fund vital research to save babies lives as well as helping us shout about the unacceptable statistic that a quarter of all pregnancies will end in loss in the UK.
For Jess this collaboration has given her confidence in calling herself a mother.
“Selfish Mothers’ collaborations with Tommy’s has really validated what we all know. We know that we are mothers. And that is a special, incredible gift to give the baby loss world.”
We are so pleased that Tommy’s and Selfish Mother have empowered Jess in this way and hope it has done the same for other mothers out there.
These sweaters are more than just an item of clothing. They are a show of solidarity with the 1 in 4 parents whose pregnancy ends in lost.
They are a sign that we see your motherhood and we support it.
Are you struggling to know how to best support someone following a stillbirth? Read our advice on comforting a bereft mother or father here.
Read Jess’ original blog post here.
Want to wear one of our Selfish Mother Tiba + Marl sweaters or T-shirts? Get shopping here.
A recently published article, co-authored by Professor Catherine Williamson from Tommy’s Research Centre at King’s College London, suggests that certain pregnancy complications can indicate future health issues for women.
Tommy’s has received a grant from the UK Government’s Department for Health and Social Care to support the costs of its PregnancyHub information and support services throughout the summer, due to rising demand in the wake of coronavirus.
Although recruitment to some clinical trials had to be paused when coronavirus hit the UK, scientists at Tommy’s Research Centres across the UK are still hard at work, supporting women and families in our specialist clinics and sharing their latest studies with academic journals.
The day before Mother’s Day, and two days before the UK officially went into coronavirus lockdown, Zara Dawson found out she was having a miscarriage. Her third consecutive miscarriage in less than a year, and fourth consecutive loss, after losing her second son Jesse in 2018 to termination for medical reasons.
I love hearing stories from inspiring women. From birth stories to infertility struggles to adoption stories, I leave each read feeling inspired and in awe of what women face and overcome. After reading a couple of stories and talking with my husband, I decided to share the story of our son Lane.
Those dreaded words that I didn't want to hear 'I am sorry but you're having a miscarriage'.
Sadly the scan showed I had lost the baby, there was no heartbeat.
2 days before my 12 week scan, I noticed some spotting.we had had a missed miscarriage.