Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Why Have a Label?


Daddy reads too much (and should probably stop) in regards to SIDS. Unfortunately, Daddy reads too many opinions regarding what SIDS is and what it is not. Even more unfortunate is that most people, who think they know what SIDS is, are either under-informed, misinformed, or just plain ignorant to the subject. Daddy can not even begin to tell you how many people insist that SIDS is suffocation, asphyxiation, or hypoxia. If this is the case, why have the label "SIDS"?

It seems quite obvious to me that these other explanations already are defined, therefore being the actual cause of death. It seems even more obvious that if the "experts" are correct, any medical examiner, doctor, paramedic, researcher, forensic investigator, and everyone else involved in determining SIDS deaths would come to the conclusion to put any of those other causes of death on the death certificate. Silly me, I read your death certificate and it does not say suffocation, asphyxiation, or says Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. That seems pretty clear to me, so why is it so difficult for others to accept SIDS as an actual cause of death? Why do they have to find a reason to point fingers and blurt out utter stupidity when silence would serve them so much better? Well, Colin, Daddy may be kind of smart, but even he can not figure this one out.

Daddy is going to switch gears here for a all who read this and still want to question, argue, debate that SIDS is anything other than SIDS, please just be kind enough to keep your opinions to yourself. As Colin's father, I live with the stigma and burden of being a SIDS parent, and the only thing that your questioning the cause of death for any SIDS parent does is pour lots of salt in a very deep wound. We would love a concrete answer instead of a diagnosis of exclusion, trust me. However, suffocation, asphyxiation, or hypoxia have already been excluded...thus the reason for the label "SIDS" to exist.

As always, I love you very much!


  1. As usual, you say what I am thinking, minus the anger and frustration. (I can feel it, you just hold back when you write it.) I shared this with my FB friends. Rock on with your eloquent self! I remember at my baby shower I said that I feared SIDS. Someone asked what it was and a person at my shower spoke up and said, "It's where the baby has something up against their face ad breathes in their own poisons. It only happens to boys." An example of the underinformed. The direct and indirect implications we as parents get is astounding. Yes, my husband was sleeping with our son at the time of death. But, as you point out, signs of suffocation (accidental or otherwise) were not present. The number of times that I have told people that my child died of SIDS and I've been met with an, "Oh, did you not put him on his back like you are supposed to?" is astounding.

    I'm glad that you were interviewed. Even one voice out there is a good thing.

  2. I think people look for someone to blame so that they don't feel quite as....powerless?...when it comes to death. If they can point their finger at a cause, a person, any kind of suspect, then in their minds they can rule out the possibility that it would ever happen to them.

  3. Just reading, not judging. Thank you for writing. ~Mary