Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Downton Abbey and Suffering

It's no secret. I love "Downton Abbey." I own all the seasons and can beat any "Downton Abbey" trivia game. I love how the story follows one family and their household through so many of life's ups and downs. The writers have made the characters real and very human, unlike many other shows and movies that make the characters out to be perfect.

Last night I was watching the last episode of the first season. In this episode, Lord and Lady Grantham discover that they are expecting child #4, then lose the baby, a boy, in a tragic accident.

In the episode, the couple were expected by society to just move on with their lives and not grieve because in the eyes of others, since no one saw the baby it did not really matter.

If got me thinking how far society has come in recognizing grief, and how far we still have to go. In 1914, women were supposed to carry on with their social lives, be subjected to talk of how they really should get over it, and how they should move on. I don't think that people meant to be insensitive, but they were, and it hurt.

Now, in 2013, almost a hundred years later, people have become more accepting of grief over a loss, but we still have a long way to go. Especially in the situation of miscarriage or early still birth, people still expect us to move on, get over it, and carry on with our social lives.

So please, if you know someone who has suffered loss, be kind and patient. Loss is devastating and it can take some people a very long time to recover.


  1. I've experienced close loss, but not directly (we lost a nephew to stillbirth, and a dear friend later that month in a car accident). I tend to believe that one can never "get over" a loss. It is possible to carry on with life, but I don't believe it will ever be the same for someone who has experienced a tragedy. It is definitely harder for someone to understand when they haven't experienced a loss, but I know it's easier for me to have patience and grace after going through last summer. It's something that has taught me to be more gracious is all situations (though I certainly have not mastered it).

    ...I found your blog through Jean Marie :)

  2. Emily,

    I agree, we can't ever "get over" a loss. We can "recover" and start functioning again, but there will always be that wound there that will never completely heal. It makes me so sad that society expects us to move on and "get over it."

    I am so sorry for your losses. What a hard summer. <3 I'm sending hugs your way.