Arranging a funeral following a pregnancy loss

Jeannette Littlemore, Sheelagh McGuinness, Patrick Dandy, Danielle Fuller, Karolina Kuberska, Sarah Turner

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle


For parents who have been looking forward to the birth of their child, experiencing a pregnancy loss, be it due to a stillbirth, miscarriage or a termination following a diagnosis of foetal abnormality, can be an extremely distressing experience. Although the thought of arranging a funeral in such circumstances may be somewhat daunting, a sensitively planned funeral can be a source of solace and provide an opportunity for parents to start to come to terms with the death of their baby. Funeral directors can play a key role in helping parents to memorialise their loss in a positive way, helping them to create memories that they can draw on to help them through the bereavement process.
In order for funeral directors to provide the best possible support for parents who find themselves in this situation, it is useful to have an insight into: the sorts of feelings parents are experiencing following the loss, the types of funeral they may find most beneficial, and the levels of knowledge they possess about what they can and cannot do at their baby’s funeral. To explore these issues, as part of the Death before Birth project , we interviewed 35 people who had experienced a pregnancy loss and, among other things, asked them about: how they felt following the loss, their experience of organising the funeral, the kind of funeral they had chosen for their child, the kind of funeral they would have liked to have had for their child, and their experience of communication with the funeral director
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages4
Specialist publicationResurgam - The Journal of the Federation of Burial and Cremation Authorities
Publication statusPublished - 10 Dec 2019


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