an After abortion

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Tuesday, May 4, 2004

From Grieving Reproductive Loss:

Any event, holiday, anniversary, special occasion, births, deaths, sights, sounds, smells, songs, or places which remind the mother of her loss are referred to as "triggers". Some triggers may reactive the mourning response and thus release the shadow grief [shadow grief is underlying, lingering grief after the initial acute grief] which in turn can lead her to re-grieve her loss, although usually in a less intense manner than she did initially. There are exceptions to this, however. At a perinatal bereavement conference, one woman told of her suicide attempt at the one year anniversary of the death of her baby. While suicide attempts are infrequent among parents who have experienced reproductive loss, families, grief counselors, and other health professionals need to be aware that there may be the remote possibility of such an occurrence. Parents have often said, "I just want to be with my baby"; yet they quickly add that they have no intention of harming themselves.

This article notes a higher rate of suicide following pregnancy termination, compared to women who carry unplanned pregnancies to term.

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