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Interview 33

Age at interview: 49
Brief Outline: Father of 1 child. His wife (EAP 24) has heart condition and takes warfarin (heparin during pregnancy). 3rd pregnancy' 7-week scan confirmed pregnancy viable. 12 week scan no problems found. Nuchal scan at 13 weeks found baby had shortened femur, no tibia or fibular on right leg. Specialist scans confirmed diagnosis of 'lower limb deficiencies'. Pregnancy ended at 17 weeks by induction.
Background: Interview with father. Pregnancy ended in 2001. Occupations' Father - lawyer, Mother - mother/NHS facilitator. Marital status' married. Ethnic background' White South African.

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Feels pleased that the rabbi arranged to have his son's name and death called out in synagogue.

Feels pleased that the rabbi arranged to have his son's name and death called out in synagogue.

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Liberal synagogue, and this rabbi in particular was very well he was very supportive, in fact I don't think I've told too many other people of this synagogue, but  the other thing that happened was that the following week I went to the synagogue, and when, when you, when you have a death then they call the, the name out in the synagogue. And the rabbi asked how we'd feel about having the baby called out, and we gave the baby a name. We'd given the baby a name which is partly the name that we might have chosen anyway, which was partly named after my late father. And so we said yes okay. 

And I went to the synagogue and the rabbi called out the name and said, 'Death of...' and mentioned the baby's name, 'Son of...' and then mentioned both of our names. And so it was done, so he was reading it out as if that had been a child that had died. And, and it felt quite strange because obviously there wasn't a child who had been born who died, but yet, yes it did feel right to recognise it in that way. And then my wife and I then we subsequently made an album about the baby - bits and pieces we collected from the ceremony and things like that.
 

He knows he made the right decision at the time but now feels more regret about the loss of his...

He knows he made the right decision at the time but now feels more regret about the loss of his...

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The most the difficult pain is the period leading up to the decision to have the termination, and once we'd gone through that and once we'd had the cremation ceremony, I probably felt myself beginning to move on already, more rapidly than my wife did. 

But I'm beginning to find as my own daughter gets older, the loss of a little brother that she would absolutely dote upon, is an additional loss that I did not contemplate at the time. 

And I probably thought more of the negative aspects at the time of that it could also have very difficult affect on her, that she would be second best to some extent. And so I am conscious that I'm focusing on, I'm still focusing on regret and, I feel sort of regret coming, coming through. And I know that's certainly not my wife's reaction. You know, she her reaction is pain and loss. Mine is pain and loss, but also a bit of regret. And I guess part of that is my own family circumstances where I still think about my mother died of cancer when about the time I left [country]. And it's sort of like, 'Oh did I do the right thing there?' - regret - and so part of that was going through my mind again with the decision to end the pregnancy.  

Guilt there's a huge amount of guilt. And I suppose, I suppose what I am now thinking is... somehow I had the ability to bring a life into the world and I didn't. And I don't know how you advise people during that situation at the time because it's just a personal situation and one has to make at the time, and no one else's experiences - no matter what they are and no matter what you say on this website - are going to prepare you for that, because it's not a situation you expect yourself to be in. 
 

Feels that he and his wife supported each other through the termination and that he has accepted...

Feels that he and his wife supported each other through the termination and that he has accepted...

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The termination my role I said before that there were two phases. The one was the 4-week period of making the decision and there it was both of us just having to decide what to do. And but sometimes feeling of being a punch bag, because you know there was a sort of feeling of why is this happening to us and the sort of irrationality 'why me?' that kicks in. And yes to some extent you do become a bit of a punch bag, but in other ways, [what's needed is] just sort of general support of something that we've got to do together. 
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