DEAR ABBY: My husband and I buried our infant son, "Daniel," two months ago. Every day since his death seems like a year. Sometimes I don't think I can make it.
My pregnant sister-in-law just found out she's having a boy, and has informed the family that she intends to name her son Daniel in "honor" of our baby. If this is a tribute, it is of no comfort to my husband and me. We have tried telling her that while we understand her intentions are good, it is just too painful because it is too soon.
My sister-in-law freaked out and accused us of trying to make this all about us. She insists that if she says it's an honor, that it is one. Abby, our hearts are breaking. Are we wrong to expect some compassion, or must we accept this "gift" and move on? -- GRIEVING FOR MY BABY
DEAR GRIEVING: Please accept my sympathy for the tragic loss of your infant son. Your sister-in-law appears determined to do what she wants, regardless of your feelings. How much more sensitive it would have been of her to have first approached you and asked if you would like it if she named her son after yours. I agree that her timing is off. Rather than an "honor," it appears more like a cruel game of one-upmanship.
However, you can't control your sister-in-law and neither can I. With that in mind, you and your husband would be wise to find a grief support group to help you. An excellent one is The Compassionate Friends, which offers mutual assistance, friendship and understanding to families following the death of a child. Visit the Web site at www.compassionatefriends.org, or write: Compassionate Friends, P.O. Box 3696, Oak Brook, IL 60522-3696. They can refer you to a local chapter, and they also provide an online forum, online chat, a pen-pal program, and more. You are in my thoughts and prayers.