Termination for Medical Reasons Support
This page is intended for those experiencing a termination for medical reasons. Many times, people find that they leave the emergency room or their provider's office with their heads spinning. They've been given information and perhaps a menu of options of what might come next, but when they get home they find themselves wanting more. They might feel they need more facts or may be desperate to know what this experience might be like. Some just feel really alone and need comfort that others have been through this.
To help answer some of your most pressing questions, we wrote a booklet about the various emotional and physical experiences that can accompany a TFMR. This booklet is informed and written by our Empty Arms community of parents who have experienced a TFMR— people who have faced a morass of heart wrenching decisions, and hope that by sharing their experiences you will feel a little less alone.
Below, you'll find suggestions for who to call with your questions and a sprinkling of helpful online resources to give you some personal accounts of termination for medical reasons. We hope these resources offer you the information you need to feel supported in making the best decision for yourself and your family.
You can call your provider
People sometimes wonder, "Is my question important enough to warrant an after-hours phone call?" The answer to this question is YES. Across the board, YES. You can call your provider and ask whatever questions you have, and you should not hesitate to do this. If you have a question that needs answering, your provider may very well have the information you need, and he or she may be able to spare you the worry and anxiety that will come from wondering on your own. Remember, they are on call for a reason.
You can call on Empty Arms
Many people have reported feeling confused and alone after leaving the hospital or office and wished they had someone they could talk to for emotional support and just to say, "What was your TFMR like for you?"
We have a system set up to help you get this help easily. You can choose from among these three options:
1. Text 413-570-0811 and send the message "Support for TFMR". When we receive this message, we will have one of our TFMR support leaders give you a call back as soon as possible.
2. Call us directly: 413-570-0811. If we don't answer, leave us a message and we'll call you back. We are available to help to talk you through your options, your anxieties, and your feelings on a peer level.
3. Send us an email explaining your situation and what you'd like help with: firstname.lastname@example.org
Beyond telephone support, a companion may be able to come to see you for an in-person visit if this would be helpful. We encourage you to reach out if you're feeling isolated and would like support.
You can join our support group
A sense of community can be an incredibly helpful resource to understand a termination and the accompanying thoughts and feelings. Empty Arms offers a monthly support group that allows parents who have experienced a termination for medical reasons to come together and discuss thoughts, worries, and ways to recover from the loss. The support group allows parents to share their experiences free of judgment. To find out more information about our Termination for Medical Reasons Support Group, click here.
You can read other people’s personal accounts
We've just selected a few personal accounts of TFMR, though of course everyone’s experience is unique. We can't guarantee that you'll relate to any of these, but it can be a start.
This Facebook Group can be a good way to connect with other parents who have terminated for medical reasons.