A British politician and his wife have shared the devastating news about the death of their twin baby boys last week that has left them "shell shocked."
Guy Opperman wrote in a Twitter thread on Wednesday that the couple's twin boys, Rafe and Teddy, both died shortly after being born last week.
Opperman, 55, did not specify the exact cause of death, but his wife, Flora, has started a fundraiser for research to prevent Preterm Premature Rupture of Membranes (PPROM).
She wrote on the fundraising page that Teddy "came and went from this world quickly, quietly and peacefully" after being born on June 20, and then Rafe, who was born on June 23, died later that day in her arms in the neonatal intensive care unit.
PPROM, which occurs before 37 weeks of a pregnancy, is when the amniotic sac ruptures before labor, according to Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. It occurs in about 8% to 10% of all pregnancies and may be caused by a weakening of the membranes or from the force of contractions, causing complications that can be dangerous for the mother and baby, according to CHOP.
"Baby loss, and coping with grief, is very hard,'' Guy Opperman wrote on Twitter. "Nothing we could do. Just a horrible tragedy. We emerged from hospital a week ago shell shocked. We have taken some time out to recover.
"I am back at work part time, but bear with me," wrote Opperman, a member of the Conservative Party representing the town of Hexham in Parliament. "We will come through this, but will always miss our boys."
Guy Opperman wrote that the loss of Rafe was "particularly acute."
"He lived and died within a long day. But we treasure our time with him in Neonatal ICU. We were able to tell him of all our hopes and dreams for him, and our family; but he could not make it and died in Flora’s arms."
The couple also expressed their gratitude to the doctors and nurses who tried to save their sons as well as the support from Sands, a U.K.-based stillbirth and neonatal death charity.
"You never regret trying to have children," Guy Opperman wrote. "Sometimes baby loss happens. We will never forget our boys. They will be with us always. Just sadly only in their spirit and their memory."