Hatfield dad speaks out on grief for Baby Loss Awareness Week

Dan Atkinson and his daughter Phoebe. Picture: Supplied.

Dan Atkinson and his daughter Phoebe. Picture: Supplied.

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In light of Baby Loss Awareness Week, a Hatfield dad who lost his baby has given his advice on what could help parents cope.

Dan Atkinson and his daughter Phoebe. Picture: Supplied.Dan Atkinson and his daughter Phoebe. Picture: Supplied.

Dan Atkinson, 34, and his wife Hannah, 32, miscarried at seven weeks after trying to get pregnant for five years.

The pair were “bubbling” with excitement and had planned to name the baby Lovelet as a symbol for something they had hoped for for so long.

Five months after being devastated by the miscarriage Hannah was pregnant again.

Early pregnancy was hard for Hannah and by the 20-week scan, the strain on her grew harder with worsening SPD (severe pelvic pain) resulting in time off work.

Dan Atkinson and his daughter Phoebe. Picture: Supplied.Dan Atkinson and his daughter Phoebe. Picture: Supplied.

Weeks of scans showed that the baby was small and an elective C-section was decided at 37 weeks.

Daughter Phoebe was born on October 16, 2016 weighing 5lbs, 10z and has just celebrated her second birthday in August.

As part of Baby Loss Awareness week (October 9 - 15), Dan is sharing his tips and talking to those who have experienced baby loss on DadsNet.

DadsNet is a special community for dads who have experienced miscarriage and other forms of baby loss.

Dan Atkinson and his wife Hannah. Picture: Supplied.Dan Atkinson and his wife Hannah. Picture: Supplied.

Dan, who is head of technical at EQ Investors. said: “This group helped me find a safe space and I know other dads on there who have had the same experience.”

“Every one grieves differently and what helps is different for each person, but for many there are things that can help.”

He advised that giving the baby a name can help people feel they are real and helps others to treat them as a ‘real’ child regardless of whether they died during pregnancy, or during/after birth

He also advised that people shouldn’t be afraid to share the fact that they have lost a child while in small talk with people.

Dan Atkinson. Picture: Supplied.Dan Atkinson. Picture: Supplied.

He added: “Getting connected and finding people you can share your feelings with is key.

“It’s not about ‘getting over it’, but rather having people that know that it’s okay not to be okay from time to time.”

In honour of the awareness week, people will be lighting candles in memory of babies for Wave of Light.

For more of Dan’s and other dads’ advice visit www.facebook.com/TheDadsnet

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