Mother keeps miscarried fetus in refrigerator for a week, posts photos to put women off abortions
Sharran Sutherland, 40, said that she did not want to let her baby be disposed of as medical waste after she lost him and decided to bury him in a flower pot in the garden
WARNING: DISTRESSING CONTENT
A mother-of-11 and born-again Christian who had to bury her miscarried fetus in a flower pot has shared the pictures of his hands and feet so that she can convince women to give up abortion. Sharran Sutherland from Fair Grove, Missouri, posted the heartbreaking images of her 14-week-old fetus so that she can show that it is "fully formed" in spite of him being only 4 inches long and weighing just 0.05lbs.
The Daily Mail reported that the 40-year-old mother did not want to let her baby be disposed of as medical waste after she lost him. She and her 35-year-old husband, Michael, kept the fetus in their fridge for a week before they finally buried him in a flower pot in the garden.
Sharran declared that she is "trying to live life as God would want" in her Facebook intro and then shared her miscarriage story on her page where she insisted to anyone reading that the fetus was a "real baby".
She wrote in her anti-abortion post: "How can a person deny not only my little boy's humanity but all other babies as young as him and kill them and in such a horrific way? I am hoping that by sharing these pictures of my precious little boy that it might just make one person who is contemplating abortion decide to let their child live."
The mother also said that she is "grateful" that she got the chance to give birth to her fetus in spite of her ending up losing him. She called him Miran.
Sharran then claimed that she was not allowed to grieve for her child properly because US law considers a fetus becoming a baby only at 20 weeks. Miran was not legally a child.
Sharran said: "Looking at him, holding him in my hand, looking at how perfectly formed he was: I was amazed. I just couldn't believe how perfect everything was on him. His ears, his tongue, his gums, his lips. I couldn't believe it. You have those baby books that show you diagrams of a baby in utero but he didn't look like anything I had ever seen. I was just filled with such awe and amazement with him."
"He just needed to continue maturing and growing and developing. It blew me away. It was an incredible feeling. It's really hard to describe. Even though he had died, I was given that chance to hold my baby still. That longing was fulfilled. I was grateful for that. I couldn't fathom it. When a woman loses her unborn child she's not able to grieve in the same way as a woman who gave birth to a baby that dies after being born."
"When a woman loses her unborn baby it's almost like you don't speak of it. A woman goes through it alone and I believe that's because other people don't recognise it as a human, as a baby. This isn't just about a woman grieving over her baby and not being able to give her baby life, it's about not recognising that this is a baby. It's just a tiny baby."
Sharran's doctors told her to do a dilation and curettage (D&C) procedure so that they could cut the fetus out of her womb after the sonogram revealed that the infant's heart stopped beating. The mother denied the procedure because she "didn't want her baby to come out in pieces". She induced natural birth on April 23, which was 173 days before Miran was supposed to be born.
The mother spent a week studying her little son and took his handprints before the whole family buried him in a plant box in their garden after a funeral director suggested the idea. The stay-at-home mother and homeschooler said: "The doctor said we can either dispose of it as medical waste, or you can call a funeral home. I was so angered by her calling my baby a 'fetus'."
"I couldn't believe she would insinuate he was medical waste. I was so angered by that. But I also felt like a funeral seemed extreme. I didn't know what to do and I was faced with this decision. My husband and I discussed burying him in a planter box filled with hydrangeas that would grow each year and come back to remind us of him, and we thought it was a great idea. When I got home [from the hospital] I made saline solution and I put him in it and I put him in my refrigerator. I know that sounds morbid to some people but I didn't want him to decompose or smell. I didn't know what else to do. We weren't ready to bury him yet."
"We had him almost a week. In that time I was able to get his handprints, take his pictures, hold him, grieve to an extent. But I had that time with him which I think really helped a lot. When it came time to bury him, that was hard. I wanted to dig him back up. I wanted to just keep him in my fridge. I didn't care if people thought it was morbid - I wanted to keep him there forever."
Sharran shared the photos of her baby's face, fingers and toes online. The post went viral a little after Miran's due date on October 12 amassing more than 36,000 likes, shares, and comments. Since the post went viral, Sharran has claimed that a friend was inspired by it and decided against having an abortion.
Sharran said: "When it came to October 12th, which was his due date, I decided to write about him on that date. I think because I shared what he really looked like, and because I shared my view [on abortion], I know some people say I've turned this into a political thing which wasn't my view or hope. I hoped that if he could help someone who is contemplating and thinking about abortion, if a woman can see and have all the information in front of her, then she can make a better choice."
"Even if she still goes through with it then at least she knew. I wasn't trying to shame women who have had them. [A friend] was going to get an abortion because she and the father were young and he wanted her to abort. But she had seen my pictures of Miran, and when she did she couldn't go through with it. She couldn't kill her child. I couldn't believe that he had touched somebody. I had hoped for it but if it was someone that close, it was amazing."
"I thought, if that's all Miran's life was meant to do, then so be it."
The photos can be seen here and some readers may find them distressing.