A SINGLE mother has described the tragic moment she woke up to discover her little boy dead next to her in bed.
When one-month-old Ben started fussing in the middle of the night, Amanda Saucedo, who is from Lorain, Ohio, was awakened. She changed Ben’s diaper and then brought him into bed with her to feed.
The mother of two, who had previously served in the US army, dozed off, but when she woke up at 8 am, she realized something was very wrong.
Ben was lying in a pool of his own blood, dead. On November 11, 2014, the atrocity occurred, and Amanda is still troubled by it to this day.
Amanda, who also has a son named Trae who is five years old, said to The Scientific Parent: “I turned to face my beloved Ben, who was curled up next to me as usual.
“But there was a problem. His nostril was stuck halfway down, and his face was pallid. When I stood up, I saw a pool of blood next to Ben.
“I muttered to myself, “No. This is not taking place!
“I scooped up my infant son, who was 30 days old, placed him on his back, and began to gently shake him while yelling, “Ben! Get up! Ben, get up!’
“I realized he wouldn’t wake up at that point. He had left already.
“As I spoke to the (911) operator, I paced my living room while carrying Ben downstairs.
“She repeatedly questioned me about starting CPR. I informed her that there was no purpose each time. Ben had left.
“He no longer resembled my Ben, and his little hard body was stiff in my arms. There was no hope, I knew. His absence lasted several hours.”
The police questioned Amanda about her use of drugs and alcohol, and the case was sent to an inquest.
Added Amanda “Was Ben in pain when he died? was the sole query I had for the coroner.
“Babies this small typically don’t experience pain from suffocation, he said.
“And at that point, guilt took over my entire life and my entire soul. I murdered Ben?
“But I was aware that I didn’t roll or lay down on him. According to the coroner, smothering is another word for suffocation.
“Ben suffocated when I dozed off for some reason. I informed him that nothing was obstructing Ben’s airway. If his nose and mouth weren’t covered, how did this happen? I did not get it.
“Despite the detective’s kindness, I had the impression that they were looking for my fault, as if I had done something to cause myself to fall asleep for an unusually long time. However, nothing was there.
“This is the day I go to hell. The worst narrative to tell is that one. It also doesn’t appear to get any simpler.”
Despite the fact that there was no evidence to support it, Ben’s cause of death was listed as positional “asphyxiation owing to dangerous sleep settings.”
Regarding the decision, Amanda says, “I was furious and obsessed by guilt.”
“Naturally, when events like this do occur, other people always want to draw their own judgments and conjecture as to what must have gone wrong.
“Accidents in bed only affect those who have been drinking, using drugs, or are obese, right?
“This parent or caregiver was undoubtedly not according to the safe sleep recommendations set forth by the great attachment parenting doctors.
“The rest of the world is constantly looking for a fault—any excuse they can grasp onto to maintain their delusion that they would never experience this.
“No healthy baby just passes away, right? They do, sadly. My own did.”
In an effort to spread awareness about SUDI, SIDS, and the possible risks associated with sharing a bed with a small infant, Amanda is now speaking out.
She uttered: “Losing a child is both upsetting and upsetting. It’s angry and sorrowful.
“The emotions that grief brings up all conflict at once. I’d do anything to spare others from having to go through this misery.
“You lose yourself in addition to your child when this happens. Life will always be divided into two sections: before and after your child’s death. You change over time.
“Since Ben passed away, I believe it is my responsibility to educate parents about healthy sleep practices. Not always, the information is welcomed.
“There is a ton of advice on the internet about how to securely bed share. I am unable to concur with it after loosing Ben.
“The danger of SIDS or SUID for a newborn who shares a bed has been repeatedly demonstrated by science.
“Many individuals tell me that they would prefer their child to be with them rather than by themselves if their babies were to pass away suddenly while they were sleeping. I’d have to disagree there as well.
“I’ll carry it to my grave with me that I’ll never know if my child would be alive today if he had been left to sleep by himself.
“I believe that if Ben had passed away when I was practicing the ABCs of safe sleep, I wouldn’t have to live with such constant doubt and shame.
“Could his passing have been avoided? I might never learn. I would not, however, wish this sense of guilt and illogic on anyone.”
Amanda spreads awareness by presenting Benny Bears to new parents along with a short tale written by her son.