Losing a baby to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome is devastating to parents, families, and caregivers. Completely unexpected, SIDS offers parents no opportunity to plan for their child's death or to say goodbye to their baby. Worse yet, the death cannot be explained, so parents examine and re-examine their behavior, searching for actions that might have caused or prevented it. Emotions run the gamut from tears to incredible anger, resentment and the desire to blame someone: sometimes parents blame one another, the caregiver, or the doctor who said their child was healthy.
At times the grief may seem unbearable. SIDS parents may be depressed or find it hard to focus. They may be physically ill, or unable to sleep or eat. For most people, the best and most important resource is a parent contact and/or peer support group meeting. Meetings are held bi-monthly throughout Orange County.
The Guild for Infant Survival, Orange County (GISOC) support group gives parents an opportunity to talk about their feelings -- and how to survive them -- with other families who have been through the experience. The sessions are conducted by SIDS parents who have been trained as facilitators through the State of California. It is important for SIDS parents to know they are not alone.
The opportunity to talk with others who have been through a SIDS death can be of great comfort. In addition, GISOC has a 24-hour, 7 day-a-week line that puts you in contact with a parent that is available for immediate support. The telephone number is 714-973-8417.
Liz Willett , President, Peer Support
I was a single parent raising my son Kaulin Riley. In 2003, he passed away from SIDS while he was at his babysitter's house. He was 5 1/2 months old. Kaulin was my first child and I have not yet had any subsequent children. I live in Irvine, California and my email address is :firstname.lastname@example.org
My name is Rachel Strickland; I lost my son Hayden on September 27, 2003. I never thought SIDS could happen to my baby but here I am. Hayden was 58 days old and perfect. I now volunteer as peer support for families in the Temecula area in hopes that I can bring comfort to those parents who are facing a very difficult time. Please feel free to e-mail me if you need to talk. My prayers are with you and your family.
You can visit Hayden’s website at: http://www.mybabymemorial.com/memorial/page/SRHH2828/index.html
"Perhaps They Are Not Stars In The Sky But Rather Openings Where Our Loved Ones Shine Down To Let Us Know They Are Happy."
Jordy Jahn, Peer Support
My name is Jordy Jahn and I lost my second son Ryan Joseph to SIDS on January 27th, 2006. Ryan was almost three months old. I was very fortunate to get in contact with the Guild for Infant Survival, Orange County just days after our loss. I was immediately put in contact with a peer-support provider who was also a SIDS parent. Since first introduced to the group, I have focused my efforts on peer-support and fundraising. My goal is to continue to raise funds for research so one day SIDS will no longer take away what is most precious to our hearts, our children.
My husband David and I currently live in Mission Viejo with big brother Dylan and our subsequent daughter Natalie Faith. My email is Jordy@gisoc.org