A nationwide campaign has been launched to encourage people to talk more openly about baby loss and to raise awareness of the “shocking statistics”.
In April 2019, Katie Ingram and her husband Ben went to hospital so she could be induced for labour. But soon after they arrived, the couple were informed that their baby’s heart had stopped beating, and their daughter Ottilie was stillborn later that day.
Katie wrote about the loss of her baby for Baby Loss Awareness Week in October 2019, describing the beauty of her daughter and the trauma she and her partner experienced.
Just over a year after suffering the loss of her daughter, Katie has launched a nationwide campaign called “No Words” with the aim of “breaking the silence surrounding baby loss”.
In the UK, approximately one in every 250 pregnancies ends in stillbirth, with eight babies stillborn every day, charity Tommy’s states.
Despite the number of babies who are stillborn on a daily basis, many people are unaware of how common stillbirth and baby loss is.
The “No Words” campaign says the “shocking” statistics that surround baby loss are “shrouded in silence”.
“We are so used to the silence that there is no word in English to describe a parent who outlives their child,” the campaign says.
“For many grieving parents people can find no words to support them.”
Katie launched the campaign to create a dialogue around baby loss, teaching members of the public about the statistics regarding baby loss and supporting individuals and families who are grieving.
As part of the initiative, a social media campaign has been organised with high-profile influencers and baby loss advocates sharing pictures of themselves wearing T-shirts printed with the hashtag “#nowords”.
One of the campaign’s aims is to encourage people who know someone who has experienced baby loss to say something, “even if that is to say that they have no words to make them feel better”.
Another is to create a noun that can be used to refer to parents who have suffered baby loss, an equivalent to nouns such as “widow” or “orphan”, which will “allow parents to speak more freely” as they will not need to explain what they have gone through to others.
The “No Words” T-shirts are available to buy online at withoutottilie.com for £20, with £5 from each sale being donated to charities supporting research into baby loss and supporting bereaved families.
If you have been affected by any of the issues raised in this article, you can contact stillbirth and neonatal death charity Sands on 0808 164 3332 or email [email protected] The helpline is open from 9.30am to 5.30pm Monday to Friday, and until 9.30pm on Tuesday and Thursday evenings.
You can contact the Miscarriage Association helpline on 01924 200799 or email the charity at [email protected] The helpline is open from 9am to 4pm Monday to Friday.
You can also find bereavement support at The Lullaby Trust by calling 0808 802 6868 or emailing [email protected]
To contact Petals to enquire about the charity’s counselling services, you can call 0300 688 0068 or email [email protected]