An Infant’s Dignity

Today, as I was perusing the blogs I subscribe to, my attention was drawn to a post by Amelia’s Mom. She writes about an article in the Calgary Herald that speaks about how the Supreme Court of Canada defended the rights of a stillborn baby.

As a quick overview, a woman apparently delivered a full term stillborn baby in her home. She wrapped the baby’s body in plastic garbage bags and put it outside on her balcony. The court ruled that any baby that is stillborn has the same right to dignity as a child or person who died after birth. This woman, as I can hardly call her a mother, will now go on trial for attempting to hide the birth and the body of her baby.

I feel that this is a very important step in the right direction in acknowledging the lives of babies, and the grief that families endure after their deaths. As the article says:

the ruling reaffirms what all parents of stillborn babies know — that this is a child in the fullest sense of the word, ready to be born, yet a child whose eyes will never open on the beauties of this world.

5 thoughts on “An Infant’s Dignity

  1. It’s heartening to see the mainstream press recognise the importance of our children and their lives in this way. That’s an appalling story though. So sad, and so rage-inducing.

  2. That is horrible anyonde could do that to there baby. Our daughter was stillborn at 41 weeks and even though we never got to see her beautiful eyes. She was just as loved as any of our living children. She was very much wanted, Skylar will always have a place in our hearts no matter what.

  3. I can only imagine what was happening within that woman’s mind. It’s easy to judge her quickly, and in the end I agree 100% with the ruling, but I feel so much pain for this mother who ultimately denied her own true motherhood and connection that she had, whether she wanted it or not, with her child. I know she will suffer anguish for her actions, and that will be punishment in itself.

    • I can see where you are coming from, and how confusing it must have been for the mother, but from my perspective, this kind of legislation will only help to reinforce that babies who are stillborn still deserve to be treated as people and with respect.

      I know I wasn’t in the position that this mother was in, but I honestly can’t fathom, having carried my son to term, being able to put his beautiful and perfect body in a garbage bag. I can’t imagine not wanting his birth and existence recognised.

      I know she must be hurting, but I definitely agree with the ruling to move forward with a second trial.

  4. Anonymous

    I don’t think any of us can judge this poor woman and her actions. Grief, hormones, trauma can do funny things to us. This poor mother needs our sympathy, support and help which I hope she gets.

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