CuddleCot is featured on TV’s ‘Eastenders’ after the character Whitney makes the tough decision to terminate her pregnancy

The CuddleCot has recently been featured on TV’s ‘Eastenders’, after the character Whitney Dean, played by Shona McGarty, makes the tough decision to terminate her pregnancy after it is revealed that her baby has Edwards’ Syndrome. Our Bereavement Consultant and Relationship Manager, Steph Wild, consulted with the producers, alongside charities Antenatal Results & Choice (ARC) and Soft UK, to make sure that the portrayal of the CuddleCot was accurate and sensitive.

Image owned by the BBC

CuddleCot is a bereavement care product that helps to engage with and support families who have suffered the loss of a baby. It is a cooling system that can be placed in a cot or Moses basket, providing a controlled environment in which to keep a baby post-mortem. This allows parents extra time with their child after suffering a stillbirth or neo-natal death, and can provide an important opportunity for grieving and closure as well as bonding.

The CuddleCot has been designed to be as user-friendly as possible and can be easily transported so that it can be used in a variety of settings. It is also compact and discreet, meaning that it can be used in a hospital setting without taking up too much space.

The CuddleCot featured on TV’s Eastenders. We also donated the Moses basket. Image owned by the BBC.

How can CuddleCot help parents who have to make the tough decision to terminate their pregnancy?

It can be one of the toughest decisions a parent has to make – to terminate a pregnancy. But for many parents, it is the only choice when they find out their baby has a terminal diagnosis.

The CuddleCot is designed to help parents through this tough time, allowing them to spend more time with their baby after termination, and say goodbye to their baby in their own time and in their own way. It can offer some precious extra moments that might otherwise be missed.

How did Eastenders use CuddleCot to help tell Whitney’s story?

The storyline began with Whitney’s partner, Lee, being given the devastating news that their unborn baby had Edwards’ Syndrome. Most babies with the condition will die before or shortly after they are born, according to the NHS. After much soul-searching, Whitney made the heartbreaking decision to terminate her pregnancy.

To help tell Whitney’s story, the Eastenders team decided to use a CuddleCot. The CuddleCot was brought in and set up in Whitney and Lee’s hospital room, where they spent precious time with their baby before making the sad decision to say goodbye.

What was the reaction from viewers to seeing CuddleCot featured on the show?

The reaction from viewers was generally positive, with many people saying that it was nice to see the CuddleCot in use on the show. Some viewers said that they had no idea that such a thing existed, and that it was a really good way to help families in this situation. Others said that it was a difficult scene to watch, but that it was handled well by the show.

How can CuddleCot help to change the way we talk about stillbirth and neonatal death?

In 2014, the charity Sands UK commissioned a YouGov poll which found that 1 in 4 people in the UK still believe that stillbirth and neonatal death are “something that happens to other people”. This suggests that there is still a lot of work to be done in order to break the taboo surrounding these topics.

One way of doing this is by changing the way we talk about stillbirth and neonatal death. Too often, these topics are seen as taboo and are therefore not spoken about openly. This can make it difficult for parents who have experienced a stillbirth or neonatal death to speak about their experiences and can leave them feeling isolated and alone.

We are working to change the way we talk about stillbirth and neonatal death, through our training events and workshops. We also help to provide support and information for parents who have experienced a stillbirth or neonatal death and we work very closely with charities such as 4Louis and The Luca Foundation, and many others. We also work with healthcare professionals to help them provide better support for parents who have experienced a stillbirth or neonatal death.

The CuddleCot can be a lifeline for parents dealing with the tragedy of a stillbirth, and we hope that by featuring it on Eastenders we can help to raise awareness of this vital piece of equipment.

We were so pleased to see the CuddleCot being used in such a sensitive and respectful way on Eastenders, one of Britain’s best-loved TV shows. It is a vital tool in helping parents to come to terms with the loss of their baby, and we hope that by seeing it on the show, other parents who are facing a similar situation will know that they are not alone.

If you have been affected by the loss of a baby, or know someone who has, we have a Grief Chat page for you to visit. We are here to support you through this difficult time.

Posted in

Teeside couple donate a CuddleCot to hospital in memory of their baby boy

A couple from Teesside donated a CuddleCot to North Tees hospital after losing their baby son was born sleeping. Helen and Chris Snow, from Thornaby, unexpectedly lost their son, Teddie, in May 2021 in James Cook University Hospital, Middlesbrough. Born at 37 weeks the couple discovered Teddie sadly did not have a heartbeat. Thanks to a CuddleCot…

Mother honours lost baby with 5 years of support for grieving families

CANADA. Katie Pereira-Prebble and Zach Prebble’s first son, Lincoln, died just before he was born in 2018. Since then, Lincoln’s parents have grieved, and also dedicated themselves to supporting other families affected by infant and pregnancy loss. This year, the day after Lincoln’s fifth birthday, they will be raising awareness around infant and pregnancy loss at…

Grieving couple donate CuddleCot to hospital in memory of their baby son to mark 2nd anniversary of his death

A grieving couple have donated a cuddle cot in their baby son’s memory to mark the second anniversary of his death and provide some comfort to families experiencing similar heartbreak. Emma Hughes and Dwayne Webley’s son Jaziah Webley was stillborn at Wolverhampton’s New Cross Hospital on August 22, 2021. The couple were told that Jaziah…

Thornaby mum donates CuddleCot after ‘perfect’ baby girl died from rare condition

A mum who lost her baby girl to a rare condition has donated a CuddleCot to the hospital that cared for her daughter. Nancy Jo Anne Rogers defied doctors’ expectations time and time again and lived a “perfect” yet heartbreakingly short life. Lisa Rogers had to say goodbye to her nine-month-old daughter after she was…

Bereavement Consultant, Steph Wild, features on the MOHA Network podcast

Mothers of Held Angels (MOHA), based in the USA, is on a mission to create a voice for grieving mothers who have held their baby after their passing, to provide immediate day-of-loss resources and ongoing bereavement support for all family members, and to raise public awareness about the pain and heartbreak surrounding stillbirth and neonatal…

Lincoln City Hospital receives CuddleCot donation from Warner Grange and Clackamas Pomona Grange

Members of the Warner Grange and Clackamas Pomona Grange donated a CuddleCot to the Family Birthing Center at Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital in Lincoln City, Oregon. The gift was gratefully accepted by the unit’s nurse manager, Jen Pierce, BSN, RN. “I am in awe of this generous, compassionate donation,” Pierce said. “As a nurse who…

Mum whose son died during labour runs a charity foundation in his name

Sharon and her husband Jas founded the Luca Foundation in 2018 to help raise money for the NHS to have CuddleCots since losing their son Luca in 2012. It’s the devastation that no parents want to experience. Sharon Luca-Chatha and her husband Jas, from Coventry, lost their son Luca in 2012 and had to endure a…

What is a CuddleBlanket?

In times of grief and loss, finding solace and comfort is paramount. We understand the emotional journey families face during such difficult moments, which is why we created the CuddleBlanket™. This innovative and compassionate offering aims to provide solace and a lasting connection for grieving families. The CuddleBlanket™ is a cooling blanket for those who…

CuddleCot to help Melbourne families through a traumatic time

AUSTRALIA. BASS Coast Health (BCH) and Gippsland Southern Health Service were fortunate to receive a CuddleCot from Melbourne family Kit and Blake Norrish, who raised funds to enable the charity Bears of Hope to supply CuddleCots to hospitals. Kit and Blake lost their first baby Arlo on 2 January 2023, but were able to spend…

CuddleCot donation will serve as a light to grieving parents

The Birth Place at Iredell Memorial Hospital in North Carolina has recently received a donation of a CuddleCot to support mothers grieving the loss of a child at birth. Brooke and Corey Schneckloth, who donated the CuddleCot, have felt this pain firsthand and wish to help others who have similar experiences. “Our son, Theo, was…