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Are you someone who has faced the loss of someone you love because of a hypertensive disorder of pregnancy? Perhaps it was your child or your spouse, a close friend or relative. Whatever the relationship, aside from the pain of the loss, you may also be confronting feelings of guilt or shame.
You may wonder 'Why did I survive and my child did not?', or 'Why did my child survive and my friend's child perish when we both went through a similar circumstance?' You may even feel responsible for the death by thinking there must have been something you could have done to change the outcome. Processing these feelings can be isolating, hurtful and leave you wondering how to go on with life. This is known as survivor guilt.
As devastating as your situation may feel, there is hope. Here are some coping strategies to help you through this experience and allow you to move forward with your life:
Whatever your circumstance may be with survivor's guilt, know you are not alone. Be kind to yourself and those around you, and allow yourself to heal at your own pace. You never have to forget what happened to you or your loved one, but you can move forward and eventually come to embrace your survival. To connect with empathetic individuals who understand exactly what you are going through, we have an active discussion underway on our Facebook Page or our Community Forum. We encourage you to join us and share your story.
International Society for the study of Hypertension in Pregnancy
October 23, 2016
San Paulo, Brazil