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Grief is real – even during the holidays……

Bells ringing, music playing and decorations are everywhere.  The holiday season seems to require that one be happy and joyful, and there often seems to be little room for those who may be sad, struggling or experiencing loss.  Yet, for many, including birth parents, this season can be very difficult….and few seem to have space to acknowledge uncomfortable feelings.  This can be no more poignant than for those waiting to expand their family and have “little ones” finally running around the house, or missing the little one they placed for adoption.

We realize this season can be difficult, and we know it may be hardest to balance the joy you have at seeing beloved friends and family while also deeply yearning for your own children, or grieving the loss of having placed a child.  We are here to not only to say it is okay to acknowledge these sad feelings you have, but it is healthy to do so.

You probably already know some of these tools, but it’s also helpful to remember good self-care tips when going into any stressful time such as……

  • Acknowledge the uncomfortable feeling you have
  • Are you a journal writer? – get out your pen and journal!
  • Do you have special “feel good music?” – crank it up and play it over and over!
  • Are there special friends or family members that “get it” who you can call or see?
  • Are there friends or family members that “don’t get it” and you need to avoid or limit your time with during the holidays?
  • Does exercise help? A favorite meal? Do you like to bake? Do you like to cook?
  • Try starting a new tradition with your supportive friends and/or family members to honor your birth child during the holidays.
  • Planning can really help here – including planning for “me time”.  Carve that time out and commit to yourself like you would to any other important event.

Most importantly, remember to be kind to yourself.  If you have something that hurts, ignoring it won’t make it go away.  You deserve to be treated gently.  And, remember that this feeling, and this time will pass.

Also, remember that members of our Domestic Infant team are available (301-664-9664 or email) to listen, hear and support if you have specific questions or needs.