5 Things You Should Not Say To A Premature Babies Parents
According to Mayo Clinic “premature birth is a birth that takes place more than three weeks before the baby's estimated due date”. In other words, it occurs before the start of the 37th week of pregnancy. Premature babies born very early, often have complicated medical problems.
Some of the causes are smoking, being very overweight or underweight before pregnancy, poor prenatal care, drinking alcohol or using over the counter drugs without prescriptions, health conditions, such as high blood pressure, preeclampsia, diabetes, blood clotting disorders, or infections etc.
Parents of premature babies face many challenges on the path of seeing their babies recover and grow normally. It is very essential that as we relate with them we be cautious about what we say to them.
"It could have been worse!"
This statement is rather uncharitable and insensitive. This kind of statement kills the light of hope in the hearts of the parent who are struggling and fighting their emotions from giving way to their fears of losing their little one. Thinking of the possibilities that may have happened on the negative is unimaginable. Words spoken at this time should bring hope and comfort to the parents.
"I'm very sorry…"
Avoid looking at them with pity because of what they are currently experiencing with their baby. Rather offer to support them to ease their struggles. You can help out in doing the dishes, cleaning cooking as they go back and forth from the intensive care unit to see the baby. Don’t offer sympathy, empathize with them.
“She’s so tiny oo!"
Parents of premature babies are usually deeply concerned about the growth of their babies compared to parents of babies that are born to term. This is because ….
Making comments about the size of a baby can be demeaning and disturbing to the parents. It reminds and wakens afresh the overflowing concerns that parents of premature babies already have.
"When will your baby be back from the Hospital? “
It is difficult to keep up with everyone asking about when the baby will come home. Except you are very close to the preemie’s parent and they see you as close such questions may not be a bother. And even at that if you asked before don’t make it a habit of asking every day because it could be tiring.
"Are you sure you did not do anything that led to this?"
Don’t hard salt to injury, you have no business asking this question because even the doctors would thoughtfully interrogate a preemie mother. You need to realize that the self-blame that is already going on in her mind. She is perhaps going down memory lane and thinking through all her actions. She is trying to search within to find answers to the questions bugging her.