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Caskets for miscarried fetuses/babies

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I've been thinking about the customs surrounding miscarriage, and also about the phenomanon of still-born and miscarriage caskets – something I knew absolutely nothing about until a poster here mentioned it. I did a Google search and found a plethora of companies that offer caskets for miscarried fetuses – for prices ranging from $58 to $2000.

The first site I came upon – Heaven's Gain, LLC (heavensgain.com/id39.html) – sells plastic 'First Trimester' caskets that could fit into the palm of your hand for $58 apiece – and the burial vault costs extra. The prices and emotional pitches only went up from there, with larger caskets for second and third trimester still-births running into the hundreds of dollars.

I thought that was exploitative. How naive I was. HG is the cheapest timy casket maker I could find.

Here's one that plays coy about its pricing (I can only hope because of shame): baymemorialsbabycaskets.com/orderform.asp

...and well it should if its caskets are anywhere near the prices of other ones I've found.

Give your stillborn fetus or infant the casket it apparently requires for the low, low price of $445:

nationalcasketgallery.com/caskets/youth.html

...or you can go for the environmentally friendly deal, purchasing a tiny wicker basket lined with cloth for just $350: stateofgrace.net.nz/caskets/baby-caskets

At least the people selling (or donating or offering patterns for) burial bunting and gowns aren't exploiting miscarriage in the way casket sellers are. (And crazy liar fundie asshole Jill Stanek recommended HG on her blog, rather than suggesting that people who have suffered such a loss merely place the remains in burial bunting and put that in the Earth from whence we came.

But then I've always believed the sorts of people who would sell a corrugated cardboard cremation box for $68 are hucksters anyway.

Fundies are feeding this exploitative idiocy. I haven't found a single fundie charity – or any charity - that offers free infant/stillborn caskets for those in need (though, to be fair, several registered charities exist for funeral gowns and bunting, which I think is genuinely nice.)

NOTE TO PEOPLE DRAWN HERE BY THE KEYWORDS: Free funeral bunting can be found here, or made according to such patterns as these.

If you feel the need for a casket to bury, the dollar store offers small, simple pine boxes for a buck. You can then sand and line and decorate them yourselves – actions you may even find comforting. Indeed, I suspect a lot of the smaller caskets for sale were created in just such a way.

If you want to keep the casket above-ground, be sure to purchase a small jar and seal it tightly, perhaps with glue or a rubber gasket, before settling it within the box. Either seal the box or cover the jar with a small cloth bag.

You've suffered a loss. You don't need some creepers to pound the crap out of your wallets as well.

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Well, there's no point in life beginning at conception unless they can get some benefit out of it.

I think if I was ever in that situation, I'd probably go with cremation.

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Thank you for this. It needs said, honestly.

Desertvixen:

When I was last in this situation, that is exactly what I did. My daughter was born at just shy of 20 weeks and died shortly after birth. In the state she was born, she was considered a "miscarriage" even though born alive because she was not yet 20 weeks and my nurse had to fight for her remains to even be cremated. I was young and my fundy family was not very supportive (leave and cleave and all that) and my now exhusband was abusive (he actually killed her by beating me until my water broke). I couldn't have walked myself through a funeral...and really, my grief was private. I took pictures ...my lovely nurse brought me cameras and urged me to...told me I'd want them later. She was right. I wish I still had them now (I left my husband with my kids and the clothes on our back) I wish I had been able to have a small service or somewhere to go. I am going to be ordering her a brick at a children's memorial.

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With the evolution in neonatal death practices there will be folks looking to take advantage of situations, and the mortuary/death industry is welcoming the new trends and the additional profits they generate.

On the upside of this discussion, women and their families now have more freedom and social acceptance when it comes to memorializing a fetus they lost through miscarriage. Some states now have legislation that requires hospitals to return remains. Some states permit birth certificates to be issued based on gestational age. Some hospitals have memorial gardens where miscarried fetuses may be interred at a minimal cost. Many cemeteries permit infants and fetuses to be interred in family plots at little or no cost. Some communities have groups and organizations that will make or provide burial containers for miscarriages (the ones in my community are not faith based).

The mortuary business is just that, a business that is meant to generate profits, and all to often families of the bereaved are still taken advantage of during a time that is rife with emotions.

FWIW I worked in the mortuary business at times in my life and my current job involves managing a historic cemetery for a fraternal organization. This nonsectarian group willingly donates plots for the burial of children and fetuses. (No caskets or containers required.)

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I don't understand what you do with a first trimester casket, tbh. I miscarried at 11 weeks. There was a brief crazy moment, when I was passing larger pieces of tissue, that I thought about saving them to bury -- but seriously. There was no baby to bury, just tissue and lots of blood. I understand a casket for a stillbirth, but even though I support people grieving how they need to, I just don't literally don't understand it for early miscarriages.

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I don't understand what you do with a first trimester casket, tbh. I miscarried at 11 weeks. There was a brief crazy moment, when I was passing larger pieces of tissue, that I thought about saving them to bury -- but seriously. There was no baby to bury, just tissue and lots of blood. I understand a casket for a stillbirth, but even though I support people grieving how they need to, I just don't literally don't understand it for early miscarriages.

I think the new observances for early miscarriages are formed and promoted by the culture of life, where every blastocyst is sacred. I do question motivation when the POV is framed by religion and anti-choice folks.

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In my state (and from what I can gather, most, if not all, states), any baby who dies past 20 weeks must be handled by a funeral home, whether it is for burial or cremation. The funeral homes in my area, including the one we used when our daughter died (born at 20.5 weeks), provide these services for free for families of infants. Their free services included a free casket or they offered an "upgrade" casket for $150 (I would estimate it would hold a baby up to full term newborn). There was no vault required for my daughter's burial since she was buried in "babyland" at the cemetery we chose. If we had chosen cremation, that service would have been free as well.

I'm honestly not sure what the choices are if the baby is under 20 weeks, though I do know one mom who had a D&C for a miscarriage at 8-9 weeks and had her baby's remains cremated. If I felt the need to do this, I would probably choose cremation for a very young fetus as well. If I wanted to bury them, I would probably go with a wooden box, not a $58 and up casket.

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I think the new observances for early miscarriages are formed and promoted by the culture of life, where every blastocyst is sacred. I do question motivation when the POV is framed by religion and anti-choice folks.

Not to be graphic...but sometimes there is a fetus and sometime it is just as you describe...tissue. Most of the time, its broken down tissue. I honestly don't think I could bury a first trimester miscarriage either even if it was relatively whole. I have never naturally miscarried that far along though and even my wife's 8 week miscarriage was a D&C. And of course, this is just me and my experience. Everyone else's will be different.

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In my state (and from what I can gather, most, if not all, states), any baby who dies past 20 weeks must be handled by a funeral home, whether it is for burial or cremation. The funeral homes in my area, including the one we used when our daughter died (born at 20.5 weeks), provide these services for free for families of infants. Their free services included a free casket or they offered an "upgrade" casket for $150 (I would estimate it would hold a baby up to full term newborn). There was no vault required for my daughter's burial since she was buried in "babyland" at the cemetery we chose. If we had chosen cremation, that service would have been free as well.

I'm honestly not sure what the choices are if the baby is under 20 weeks, though I do know one mom who had a D&C for a miscarriage at 8-9 weeks and had her baby's remains cremated. If I felt the need to do this, I would probably choose cremation for a very young fetus as well. If I wanted to bury them, I would probably go with a wooden box, not a $58 and up casket.

Our cremation was free as well...as far as I remember.

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The hospital where I had my twins (born at 21 weeks, born alive and lived for just under an hour) was partnered with a local mortuary that offered free cremation services. We had to pay for the urn, and they put an engraved name plate on it for free. They were very reasonably priced and were very sensitive and compassionate. I am very thankful for the way they handled everything.

As for burying the remains from an early miscarriage, I personally wouldn't do it but don't see a problem if someone feels the need to. I like the idea of buying and carving/decorating a small pine box better than purchasing a casket though. JMO.

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I was 11 or 12 weeks along when I had my miscarriage and it was just pieces of tissue.

Although I am glad that women who want a burial can have one, I wonder if fundie women will be guilted into having a ceremony that they don't want. I wouldn't have wanted to bury my fetus. For me, it would have made moving on more difficult. My mom managed to make me feel horrible by asking why I didn't cry more about my miscarriage. A fundie woman who didn't want the burial might be made to feel like she was an unloving mother.

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During my miscarriage at 12 weeks, I was absolutely panicked about what I was going to do with the remains. I didn't want to flush, accidentally or on-purpose anything that resembled a baby, but I didn't want to have to look at it either to see what it looked like. This fear made everything much more difficult and painful. In the end, I realized since the baby had died over a week before, its spirit had gone to wherever it needed to be. What was left that early was just tissue,etc. I don't blame a woman for wanting to bury an early miscarriage, it is a very sad occasion. I do think the people trying to make money off of that sad occasion need to seriously fuck off. $58 and up is just obscene.

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I've been thinking about the customs surrounding miscarriage, and also about the phenomanon of still-born and miscarriage caskets – something I knew absolutely nothing about until a poster here mentioned it. I did a Google search and found a plethora of companies that offer caskets for miscarried fetuses – for prices ranging from $58 to $2000.

The first site I came upon – Heaven's Gain, LLC (heavensgain.com/id39.html) – sells plastic 'First Trimester' caskets that could fit into the palm of your hand for $58 apiece – and the burial vault costs extra. The prices and emotional pitches only went up from there, with larger caskets for second and third trimester still-births running into the hundreds of dollars.

I thought that was exploitative. How naive I was. HG is the cheapest timy casket maker I could find.

Here's one that plays coy about its pricing (I can only hope because of shame): baymemorialsbabycaskets.com/orderform.asp

...and well it should if its caskets are anywhere near the prices of other ones I've found.

Give your stillborn fetus or infant the casket it apparently requires for the low, low price of $445:

nationalcasketgallery.com/caskets/youth.html

...or you can go for the environmentally friendly deal, purchasing a tiny wicker basket lined with cloth for just $350: stateofgrace.net.nz/caskets/baby-caskets

At least the people selling (or donating or offering patterns for) burial bunting and gowns aren't exploiting miscarriage in the way casket sellers are. (And crazy liar fundie asshole Jill Stanek recommended HG on her blog, rather than suggesting that people who have suffered such a loss merely place the remains in burial bunting and put that in the Earth from whence we came.

But then I've always believed the sorts of people who would sell a corrugated cardboard cremation box for $68 are hucksters anyway.

Fundies are feeding this exploitative idiocy. I haven't found a single fundie charity – or any charity - that offers free infant/stillborn caskets for those in need (though, to be fair, several registered charities exist for funeral gowns and bunting, which I think is genuinely nice.)

NOTE TO PEOPLE DRAWN HERE BY THE KEYWORDS: Free funeral bunting can be found here, or made according to such patterns as these.

If you feel the need for a casket to bury, the dollar store offers small, simple pine boxes for a buck. You can then sand and line and decorate them yourselves – actions you may even find comforting. Indeed, I suspect a lot of the smaller caskets for sale were created in just such a way.

If you want to keep the casket above-ground, be sure to purchase a small jar and seal it tightly, perhaps with glue or a rubber gasket, before settling it within the box. Either seal the box or cover the jar with a small cloth bag.

You've suffered a loss. You don't need some creepers to pound the crap out of your wallets as well.

Pity, Evelyn Waugh cannot add an extra chapter about this to his hilarious book 'The loved one.'

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i've no feelings on how people do or do not commemorate a miscarriage, but i do have to wonder about this, from that website:

Placing our baby in the bottle, and partially wrapping the bottle with a blanket allowed us to cuddle and rock our baby without worrying about skin breakdown. After being suspended in water, our baby's appearance was improved, even when we occasionally removed him from the water.

really? REALLY? a first trimester miscarriage, sealed in a bottle of saline, wrapped in a blanket to cuddle and hold? and occasionally removed from the jar?

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During my miscarriage at 12 weeks, I was absolutely panicked about what I was going to do with the remains. I didn't want to flush, accidentally or on-purpose anything that resembled a baby, but I didn't want to have to look at it either to see what it looked like. This fear made everything much more difficult and painful. In the end, I realized since the baby had died over a week before, its spirit had gone to wherever it needed to be. What was left that early was just tissue,etc. I don't blame a woman for wanting to bury an early miscarriage, it is a very sad occasion. I do think the people trying to make money off of that sad occasion need to seriously fuck off. $58 and up is just obscene.

This.

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The 2 miscarriages I had at 14 and 16 weeks had more than just tissue but to this day I don't know what happened to them. I lost both pregnancies at the hospital and they whisked away the remains never letting me see anything. Maybe it was because I was so young or maybe something else but I was never given a choice on what I wanted done with my 3 daughters.

I don't think about it as I have 5 healthy living sons but if I did I would give in to grief. Now I wonder what they looked like and how they were desposed of.

I lost my oldest son's twin at 16 weeks but he wasn't 16 weeks along, he died around the 10-12 week mark and we buried him privately in the mountains with no one but my ex and I. I didn't want the hospital taking him away like they did my daughters and never knowing.

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Next step, they let the kids gather with their violins and makethem play amazing grace for Michelles sanitary pads before burying them in the indian pet cemetery outside Duddlyfuck, Arkansa'.

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i've no feelings on how people do or do not commemorate a miscarriage, but i do have to wonder about this, from that website:

really? REALLY? a first trimester miscarriage, sealed in a bottle of saline, wrapped in a blanket to cuddle and hold? and occasionally removed from the jar?

Removing it from the jar is what got me. Really, you want to keep your first trimester miscarriage in a jar like a specimen in a lab, that's your choice and that is ok. But...to take it OUT of the jar and cuddle/play with it? No.

Just no.

 

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I feel very strongly that I should be cremated and that the energy contained in my body should go back into the energy stream. Therefore, I think burying is out of the question. So is keeping my ashes in an urn on the shelf. I saw a TED talk about a woman who is working on a burial suit that holds organisms that will break down the tissue and leave no poison/disease/ill effects, and so the body can be placed in the ground and contribute to the planet. I hope those are available when I go.

If I were to have a miscarriage, I would want the same to happen, and keeping it in a box would not be one of the options. Sending it down a sanitary sewer or burnt as medical waste is a more eco-friendly option, to me. Maybe it would be a comfort to those of you who grieve your miscarriage, but didn't bury it, that the remains are participating in the cycle of life that exists on this planet.

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My sister in law is 16 weeks pregnant right now. About a week ago she had a miscarriage of a 6-8 week old TWIN to the baby in her right now. She said what came out, looked like a ball of tissue. The other baby is fine and dandy! She was telling me about it and I was all "DID YOU LOOK AT IT?!?!?" (because i'm gross like that) and she was like, "NO! it was FOUL and smelled TERRIBLE!"

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Removing it from the jar is what got me. Really, you want to keep your first trimester miscarriage in a jar like a specimen in a lab, that's your choice and that is ok. But...to take it OUT of the jar and cuddle/play with it? No.

Just no.

 

Eeew, just eeew!

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Eeew, just eeew!

Do. Not. want.

That is... on a par with the "My Strange Addiction" woman who got some of her husband's ashes after he was cremated on her hand, and she couldn't bear to wash her hands so she licked it off. She then started EATING THE ASHES on a regular basis. :oops: :cry:

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People marketing anything akin to funerals/burial to first term miscarriages are vultures. I have three children and miscarried one child at about 9 weeks - it never occurred to me to save the tissue (blood clots?) or bury it. It's normal and healthy to be upset/grieved at a miscarriage, but to be encouraged to save the tissue/remains (and be charged a premium to do so) is sick IMO. Stillborn children (i.e. 2nd trimester or later) to be buried has been common for awhile. Only 3 years ago my mother (who is now 78) discovered that she had a 18 mos old brother and stillborn sibling who died due to my grandmother's exposure to measles...it was sad, but common for the time, and graveyards had a section for both infants/stillborn.

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Out of curiosity, since I've wondered this during several losses - how do you arrange to have the "remains" cremated after a miscarriage, esp. when it's hard to make out what's what? I do have the remains of one in a tiny "casket" - it's inside of a sort of block of clear resin, but I painted over that, since I had no urge to take out my miscarried fetus and play with it. I just couldn't bear to chuck it into the toilet and flush.

The casket is a $15.00 decorative wooden box that I had once given to my deceased mother, and the resin block is wrapped up in a baby hat that I'd crocheted. I would much rather use a dollar store box than pay out the ass for one of those on the website. Am I the only one who thinks the "vaults" look like boxes for takeout?

When I was pregnant with BabyKay #3, I miscarried a twin while in the ER, but a nurse threw it out when I was out of the room. I was a bit upset, but I wasn't about to get hysterical over it. However, if I do end up having yet another loss down the road, I'd kinda like to know the options.

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