For 24 agonizing hours, Monica Franco-Pineda prepared to deliver a stillborn baby. She and her husband, Walter, had learned on Oct. 14, 2010, four days past her due date, that their son, Gabriel, no longer had a heartbeat. “I had a lot of time to digest what was going to happen,” she remembers.
Mrs. Franco-Pineda, a flight attendant and photographer in British Columbia, spent part of this time searching online for answers to her questions: What would it be like to give birth to a baby who wasn’t alive? How would he look? What did other people do? Her online research led to her discovery of videos that memorialize stillborn children, posted by parents who had undergone stillbirth themselves. Watching these helped her to feel less alone.
At the time, she wasn’t planning to make a similar video. But she did know that she wanted the charity Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep to come and take photographs before she left the hospital. She was familiar with the organization, which provides professional portraits to families following the loss of a baby, as she’d considered volunteering years earlier.
The point of these photographs, Mrs. Franco-Pineda said, was that “at least we’d have a memory, to acknowledge that he did exist. They dressed him, made casts of his feet and hands, they also made the foot and handprints.” The resulting black-and-white photos, of the couple posing with their lifeless baby, are poignant elements of the video they posted on YouTube two months later.
Mrs. Franco-Pineda refers to herself as a “mamarazzi”: a mother who records as much of her three other children’s lives as possible. So it felt natural to document the experience of losing Gabriel, whether in photos, a video or a Pinterest board. And she urges families who experience it to document their experience as well.
Stillbirth, generally defined as the death of a baby in the womb after 20 weeks of pregnancy, occurs in 1 percent of pregnancies in the United States, or about 24,000 babies. A recent research paper in Omega: Journal of Death and Dying, based on an analysis of 50 YouTube videos, shows that these average about 5.5 minutes. And they tend to follow a familiar script.
The first section shows happy scenes and color images of the pregnant mother, everybody smiling. Midway through, tragic news comes as a shock, symbolized with an abrupt change to black and white. This second section tends to include religious imagery, photos of the stillborn baby, and a mournful song, often one with lyrics about child loss.
The formulaic nature of these videos is partly what makes them so cathartic, according to the study’s lead author, Marie-Frédérique Bacqué, a psychotherapist and professor at the University of Strasbourg. “It is a characteristic of a social rite,” Dr. Bacqué explained, “to have the same structure.” The repetitive nature of a ritual imbues it with social meaning, which is larger than an individual.
It can also be comforting for those who are grieving, allowing them to achieve some form of control following an event that can leave people feeling helpless. “The sameness is a way to normalize the death. It is very important for people to say ‘I’m normal. Yes, I have lost a child. But I’m normal.’”
Stillbirth memorial videos have codified certain rituals in a relatively short time, compared to the centuries over which, for instance, the Catholic church influenced the funeral traditions still common in cultures influenced by Catholicism. Over the course of about 15 years, Dr. Bacqué says, YouTube has become a kind of virtual cemetery for parents experiencing stillbirth.
This is partly related to a greater openness to expressing grief publicly. Ten years ago, only women attended the support groups Dr. Bacqué ran for bereaved parents. Now there are equal numbers of mothers and fathers.
[Read more: A Device That Gives Parents of Stillborn Babies Time to Say Goodbye]
Of course, not all parents experience stillbirth the same way. Posters of stillbirth memorial videos on English-language YouTube and Dailymotion tend to be white and North American, Dr. Bacqué said. But black Americans are twice as likely as white Americans to give birth to a stillborn child.
Though the majority of stillbirth memorial videos shared via social media follow the now-established conventions, some parents are creating their own forms of filmed tributes.
Like Mrs. Franco-Pineda, Brian Fisher, a Michigan graphic designer, is used to documenting his family’s life. His YouTube channel is full of vacation videos featuring him and his wife, Kaytee. He’d been collecting lots of footage during her pregnancy, when they learned that their daughter, Elliott Rose, had a lethal form of skeletal dysplasia that meant she would survive only a short period after birth. It was a painful decision, but the Fishers chose to carry Elliott to term.
Ms. Fisher told me that now, two years later, “I’m so grateful for that time. We carried her for seven more weeks after the diagnosis before she was born and we fit a lot in to that time, and it allowed us to start grieving while she was still here.” This included Mr. Fisher’s special project of recording each step of the process, to complete the video in time for the memorial service, two weeks after Elliott’s birth and death.
Unusually for stillbirth memorial videos, the Fishers’ is upbeat. Mr. Fisher sought out stock songs tagged “uplifting,” and the video features colorful images of his smiling wife. “There were plenty of sad moments, tears, quiet days and weeks during the journey,” he acknowledged. “However, we didn’t want those to be the focus of the video, as we wanted it to also serve as an inspirational reminder to others about enjoying the moments we have.”
This also helped the Fishers to convey their loss to loved ones. “I think without the video it may have been more difficult for people to comprehend that she was here,” said Ms. Fisher, a pediatric nurse who has blogged about aspects of the experience, such as the way well-meaning people seemed to overlook her husband’s grief.
While most comments on the videos are supportive, parents can make online funeral services and videos private, rather than sharing them via social media sites.
Parents choose to memorialize stillborn babies in different ways; Ms. Fisher now has a half sleeve tattoo of wildflowers in Elliott’s honor, which she feels has been helpful to the healing process. Like Mrs. Franco-Pineda, she encourages other grieving parents to find ways to document their experiences. But she also cautions: “Be gentle with yourself. Be honest with yourself, and those around you … I wish someone would have told me to not make any major life decisions in the first year. You’re simply not ready.”
And Dr. Bacqué advised, “Please don’t stay isolated.” She suggested that grieving parents join a support group or share their stories in forums such as the child loss and infertility website Still Standing.B:
皇冠顶尖高手论坛一【在】【罗】【布】【泊】【以】【西】【楼】【栏】【古】【城】【废】【墟】【之】【下】，【别】【有】【洞】【天】。【有】【一】【地】【下】【河】，【河】【中】【鱼】【产】【丰】【富】。【距】【玉】【门】【关】【也】【不】【过】【数】【百】【里】【远】，【任】【谁】【也】【想】【不】【到】**【总】【坛】【就】【在】【这】【里】。 【魔】【门】【中】【人】【以】【打】【劫】【来】【往】【商】【队】【为】【主】，【武】【功】【又】【高】，【行】【事】【隐】【蔽】，【来】【去】【无】【踪】，【官】【府】【也】【找】【不】【到】【踪】【迹】，【围】【剿】【更】【是】【无】【从】【谈】【起】。 【这】【天】，**【总】【坛】【之】【内】，【教】【主】【林】【傲】【天】【和】【副】【教】【主】【辛】【苦】【争】【吵】【了】【起】【来】
【沈】【云】【玉】【知】【道】【这】【些】【情】【况】【后】，【也】【投】【资】【了】【一】【个】【亿】。【九】【度】【大】【表】【哥】【也】【知】【道】【了】【药】【材】**【获】【得】【巨】【大】【成】【功】【后】，【也】【投】【来】【一】【个】【亿】【的】【资】【金】。 【大】【表】【哥】【的】【儿】【子】【负】【责】【开】【发】【欧】【美】【市】【场】，【沈】【云】【玉】【负】【责】【部】【分】【产】【品】【的】【精】【加】【工】。 【但】【是】，【九】【度】【和】【药】【材】【商】【发】【现】【医】【药】【人】【才】【极】【度】【匮】【乏】，【于】【是】【想】【建】【立】【自】【己】【的】【药】【材】【和】【医】【生】【学】【校】【了】。 【那】【么】【迫】【在】【眉】【睫】【的】【就】【是】【建】【立】【中】【医】【中】【职】
【想】【不】【到】【少】【严】【寺】【和】【苍】【山】【剑】【客】【的】【事】【情】，【很】【快】【就】【流】【传】【到】【了】【这】【里】。【细】【细】【想】【来】【也】【是】，【十】【几】【日】【过】【去】，【中】【原】【大】【陆】【又】【不】【是】【闭】【塞】【之】【所】，【因】【此】【这】【些】【事】【情】【被】【传】【的】【沸】【沸】【扬】【扬】，【来】【到】【了】【云】【鬓】【城】，【也】【倒】【是】【没】【什】【么】。 【看】【着】【木】【天】【郑】【重】【的】【模】【样】，【丁】【耒】【吐】【出】【一】【口】【气】，【道】：“【我】【不】【是】【什】【么】【高】【僧】【转】【世】，【其】【实】【说】【来】，【我】【也】【是】【被】【少】【严】【寺】【一】【位】【僧】【人】【看】【中】【而】【已】。” “【原】皇冠顶尖高手论坛一“【恭】【喜】【你】，【练】【成】【了】【神】【级】【刀】【术】，【很】【强】。”【周】【文】【看】【了】【一】【眼】【胸】【前】【破】【碎】【的】【龙】【鳞】【甲】，【由】【衷】【的】【说】【道】。 【风】【秋】【雁】【收】【了】【刀】，【却】【摇】【头】【道】：“【纵】【然】【是】【神】【级】【刀】【术】，【却】【还】【是】【败】【了】，【若】【非】【教】【练】【你】【及】【时】【收】【刀】，【我】【已】【经】【身】【首】【异】【处】。” 【周】【文】【手】【中】【的】【竹】【刀】【已】【经】【回】【鞘】，【笑】【道】：“【算】【是】【平】【手】【吧】，【我】【身】【上】【穿】【着】【神】【话】【铠】【甲】，【知】【道】【你】【伤】【不】【了】【我】，【所】【以】【才】【能】【考】【虑】【收】【刀】【的】
【随】【着】【岳】【阳】【派】【被】【屠】，【重】【新】【回】【到】【盟】【主】【山】【庄】，【楚】【熙】【的】【生】【活】【也】【逐】【渐】【回】【归】【了】【平】【静】。 【楚】【熙】【重】【新】【做】【回】【了】【以】【前】【无】【所】【事】【事】【的】【武】【林】【盟】【主】，【不】【过】【和】【以】【前】【不】【一】【样】【的】【是】， 【此】【时】【的】【楚】【熙】【已】【经】【不】【用】【再】【提】【防】【身】【边】【的】【人】【对】【自】【己】【心】【存】【不】【轨】，【而】【是】【真】【正】【的】【过】【上】【了】【幸】【福】【的】【生】【活】。 【身】【边】【四】【个】【夫】【君】【都】【对】【自】【己】【极】【度】【的】【宠】【爱】，【都】【一】【副】【恨】【不】【得】【将】【楚】【熙】【宠】【成】【一】【个】……【植】
【看】【到】【林】【毅】【突】【然】【也】【是】【化】【身】【为】【一】【个】【巨】【人】，【古】【昔】【心】【中】【吃】【惊】【不】【已】，【不】【过】，【他】【毕】【竟】【是】【身】【经】【百】【战】【且】【老】【谋】【深】【算】【的】【人】【物】，【于】【是】，【他】【率】【先】【出】【手】。 “【哼】，【小】【崽】【子】，【不】【要】【以】【为】【变】【成】【与】【老】【夫】【一】【样】【的】【巨】【人】，【就】【可】【以】【为】【所】【欲】【为】，【你】【坏】【我】【巫】【族】【万】【年】【大】【计】，【这】【一】【次】【天】【王】【老】【子】【来】【了】【都】【救】【不】【了】【你】。” “【我】【要】【把】【你】【挫】【骨】【扬】【灰】，【还】【要】【以】【血】【脉】【搜】【魂】【追】【杀】【之】【术】，【杀】