Souvenirs of Star Children
Star Children: Honoring keepsakes, creating memories and celebrating the parent-child relationship
„Hooray! We are pregnant! parents-to-be often announce to friends, family and neighbors early in pregnancy. Everyone is looking forward to the offspring with the couple. But usually only mum and dad have a real emotional connection to the miniature human.a.
If the child dies before it is born or dies during childbirth, a world collapses for the parents. The environment is often helpless and silent out of helplessness. The subject remains taboo to this day. But: Parents of star children need comfort, conversation and memories of their child.
What are star children?
Star children are children who have died in the womb or who die during or shortly after birth. Other names for these children are butterfly children , angel children or Silent Miracles .
The thought behind these very poetic names is that although these children were never allowed to see the light of day or have never walked the soil of this world with their own feet, they are children of heaven forever.
Every year around 700,000 babies see the light of day in Germany. In addition, there are an estimated 90,000 to 180,000 Star Children. Because up to 25 percent of all pregnancies end tragically: Depending on when the children die and how much they weigh at the time, miscarriage or stillbirth is spoken of.
Despite the high number, these star children are largely invisible in our society. The topic is called in Germany taboo subject treated.
Even if a lot has improved in recent years and a culture of appreciation and remembrance is gradually developing, there is still a lot of catching up to do.
initiatives like thatVerein Herzenssache Sewing for Starlets and Premature Babies e.V.., which is supported by MeinBabyposter, would like to contribute to the Creating memories of these children and keeping them alive .
Shaping memories and creating keepsakes
When a child is born and begins its life, parents and baby are literally inundated with gifts and cards for the birth. Giving a gift on the birth of a star child is of course very delicate, since it is also the anniversary of the death of this child.
On the other hand, a thoughtfully chosen gift can be a manifestation of the existence of that child. And that is exactly the affirmation that most Star Parents desire. Such gifts can include a weatherproof toy that can be used to decorate the grave.
Also a star child poster , which is a lasting reminder of that child and can be hung at home is a pious gift . Alternatively, a book can be given to the star parents grief management be presented.
Coping with grief for the lost child
For a long time, parents were not given the opportunity to say goodbye to their child. It was assumed that it was better for the parents not to see their dead child.
This attitude was based on the assumption that looking at the dead child and holding it in one's arms would create too close a bond and make saying goodbye even more difficult.
However, parents, especially the mothers , most of time an intimate relationship even during pregnancy and close bond with her child.
Dealing with star children and their parents has only changed since the beginning of this millennium: In hospitals it is now common for parents to be given the space and time to say goodbye to their child. And since 2013 there has been the possibility of receiving a certified certificate from the registry office for a star child, regardless of the duration of the pregnancy.
Star children must also be buried in at least one collective grave. In most federal states, parents have the right to bury their children in a single grave.
Farewell to the star child in the clinic
If the child is already big enough to be born in the normal way, clinics now offer the parents of a star child a room in which they can look at their child. Parents are allowed to clothe and hold the child.
There are also specialized baby photographers , to which most clinics have contacts who photograph star children. These photos are a treasured keepsake for many parents of Star Children.
If the parents want it, they can too Relatives say goodbye in the clinic to be invited. Also are clinic chaplain on call to look after the family.
Mourn together: Funeral service and funeral
One burial and a funeral service are a way to welcome the child as part of the family and say goodbye with dignity. Today, most pastors are willing to accompany the burial of a star child.
Even with star children who died before the completion of the twelfth week of pregnancy, there is usually the possibility of carrying out a funeral with a pastor if desired.
A funeral, to which family members and close friends can also be invited, often makes it easier to talk about the star child.
Coping with grief: living with loss
No matter how small and how young the star child was when it died: the parents have lost a child and must learn to live with this loss. This applies all the more if there are already other children in the family who not only need to be cared for, but who have also lost a sibling themselves.
The first point of contact when it comes to coping with this grief is midwives and clinic chaplains . If parents of star children realize that they cannot cope with their grief alone, they should help support groups , therapists or in counseling centers search.
Star parents give comfort
The reactions from those around the parents of star children range from the well-intentioned You will definitely get pregnant again very quickly to But that wasn't a child at all. Most parents of star children find terms such as miscarriage or the loss of the womb degrading.rdigend.
In most people, there is no malicious intent behind such reactions, but Fear of saying the wrong thing .
Basically, however, it is quite simple: the parents have lost a child. They need comfort, support and help to place a keepsake for the Star Child. But what can the consolation for star parents look like in concrete terms?
When a person loses a partner or parent, it is a societal consensus to express condolences to that person. In our society, this means recognizing the suffering that this person is enduring.
Parents of Star Children so definitely should condoles will. This can be in person, with a card, or with a wreath at the funeral. consolationSayings for star children we discussed in another blog post.
Souvenirs of Star Children
The famous German dramatist, librettist and poet Bertolt Brecht said: Man is only really dead when no one thinks of him anymore. Therefore, it is so important for Star Parents that thes memory of her child is kept alive .
The Herzenssache association, which is supported by MeinBabyposter, has therefore created a place of remembrance where children from the stars are remembered. This place of remembrance is located on the Wandlitz/OT Schönwalde cemetery.
Here was a Memorial stone with memorial sheets built of bronze for the star children. At a tree of silence, which was also planted there by the association, relatives of star children can come to mourn and commemorate.
However, since there is not such a place of remembrance in every town and village, it is also possible symbolic places of remembrance create. These can be very different things:
- Star child hand and footprint
- Photos of the Star Child
- Photo collage of ultrasound images when dealing with a very small Star Child
- Reminder boxes with ultrasound images, the maternity record and other items, if applicable
- Commemorative posters like the star child poster
Personalized reminders of Star Children
Star parents, like all parents-to-be, wanted to take their baby home after birth. But after the birth of a star child, the children's room remains empty Child never arrives at parent's home . Many star parents long for their child a place to give , which not only in the heart and the memory of the parents. There are many different options that Star Parents can choose from:
- star baptism : There is the possibility to buy a star and name it. The buyer of the star then also receives a certificate and a star map on which the star is located.t.
- chain pendant : The Star Child's name can be engraved on a pendant. Star parents can carry a souvenir of their child with them at all times.
- star child poster : This poster can be individually designed with the name and, if desired, further data of the child as well as a desired motif and a freely chosen color variant. With this poster one draws lasting memory Home with the Star Parents. At the same time, star parents support the work of the Herzenssache association with such a poster.
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