Friday, March 22, 2013


One of my biggest questions is why. Not why did Ariella die but why does no one talk about stillbirth. 

There was a point during my pregnancy with Ariella when I was scared about stillbirth. But I thought that stillbirths were rare; that they don't really happen in countries like Australia or in low-risk pregnancies. 

But did you know that:

*2000 babies are stillborn in Australia each year?
*7 babies are stillborn each DAY in Australia?
*50% of stillbirths are unexplained?

If 50% are unexplained, that means that low-risk pregnancies are not excluded.Before Ariella I thought that stillbirths only happened in higher risk pregnancies, or if there were health problems for the baby.

Society will often talk about SIDS, AIDS, malaria and road accidents. But did you know that:

*Stillbirths are 10 times more common than SIDS?
*There are more stillbirths each year (globally) than children killed from AIDS or malaria combined?
*More babies die in Australia from stillbirth and newborn death than people die from road accidents?

Statistics for stillbirths/newborn death haven't changed significantly in the past decade. So why don't people talk about stillbirth (and newborn death)? I'm certainly glad that people talk about it more than they did in the past, and that the way stillbirths are dealt with have changed. In the past, stillborn babies were taken from their parents straight away; most parents never even got to see their precious child. We were able to see, hold and spend time with Ariella. We have memories with her, and for that I am grateful. But I still hate the silence that surrounds stillbirth.

This video contains most of the stats I mentioned above, plus more. 


Sharna said...

I think one of the reasons is that we don't want to scare women more than they may already be about becoming pregnant or if they are already pregnant. I know I avoid talking about the scary or sad stories with some of my friends when they are pregnant, because I hope and pray they will not have to experience those things themselves. But I didn't know most of these statistics - and they are truly hard to face. Tears with this article! Thanks for sharing this valuable information.

MsMidge said...

I'm so sorry for you loss.

I never even really knew stillbirths existed until I met my beautiful boss 16 years ago. She lost her first child, Christopher, when he was delivered stillborn. Since then, I have been very aware but surprised that she was the only person that I knew of who had experienced such a loss. Then a couple of years ago a Mum at my children's school lost her third child, unexplained, stillborn. Since then, I have noticed more articles etc about still birth, but there certainly isn't as much "talk" about it as there should be. I hope you are doing "ok" and am glad that you had the chance to spend some time with Ariella. xxx

Larissa said...

That's fact I almost said something along the lines of "this might scare you if you're pregnant" - but from my experience, you worry enough about other things in pregnancy. They warn you of the risk of miscarriage until 12 weeks, then you have to wait until 20 weeks to "make sure baby is growing ok", then at 28 weeks there's the diabetes test, then they start to talk about labour...etc. There's always something to worry about :( I just wish they would at least *mention* the risk of stillbirth. It doesn't seem fair to leave it out when the stats are as high as they are...

Larissa said...

Thank you.

I think I'm doing as "ok" as can be expected, and I'm glad for the time we had with her too :) I didn't think I knew anyone who had had a stillbirth either, although it turns out an older lady in my church had one. A friend had one the week before me, which was the first time anyone close to me had one.

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