Why do crying babies trigger me?

Just before I left for boot camp in my early 20s. My then-wife became pregnant. She had a bit of a rough go with pregnancy and eventually had a miscarriage.

We went to the hospital to treat her and make sure she was okay, and then the doctors who were working thought it would be cool to show us the fetus. “Do you want to see it?” Before we could respond, it was shown. That whole episode is a blur right now, but I’m sure it impacted me because there are lingering traumas.

Shortly after this happened, I shipped out to boot camp. Having just suffered the loss of a baby, going into that extremely challenging and stressful environment further impacted my suffering. I remember one day I was in church, and in the distance a baby began to cry, we were singing hymns, the baby cried, and I lost my shit. I also began to sob uncontrollably that Sunday morning.

Years and years have passed since this happened to us, but to this day, if I hear a baby crying out loud, I start to feel my heart race, and with great effort, I have to fight back the urge to cry. Some trauma stays with you, and this one has stuck around for two decades.

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