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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    How can i support a friend who recently lost a baby to SIDS?

    My best friend just lost her baby from SIDS and I don’t want to ask her details but I would like to understand what she is going through. Can you explain?
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  • I have a speciality in grief and trauma, illness and disability. I have training in psychological debriefing after trauma and in supporting parents and carers. View Profile

    The most important support is “being there” walking the journey over time. Often there is a flurry of support after a terrible loss like this and then no support within a short time. Families can feel very isolated and alone in their grief and frequently others walk away because they don't know what to say. What is helpful is just to say: “How are you” and to want to know. Practical support can also be valuable like cooked meals, cakes, offers to pick up children, doing the garden etc.

    Dr Annie Cantwell-Bartl

  • I have a speciality in grief and trauma, illness and disability. I have training in psychological debriefing after trauma and in supporting parents and carers. View Profile

    The most important thing is to be there and to walk with your friend over time. This sort of loss is catastrophic for a parent and totally unexpected. Ask your friend what she needs. Think a cooked meal, presence, flowers over time. Dont try and avoid the topic or try and fix it up in anyway that will leave your friend feeling more bereft and lonely and she will feel that no one wants to know about her pain or her baby. Put your arms around her when it feels right and ask how she is? Her pain will fade in time but will be felt over a lifetime.
    Dr Annie

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