How to announce your pregnancy to your infertile friend

I should revise this title to be “how to announce your pregnancy” as I don’t think there needs to be a strong differentiation if you have friends who are struggling to conceive.

Any announcement should be based on one principle alone: how close your relationship is.

If do you want to keep an infertile friend in mind, here are my recommendations for how to unveil your joyful news:

Select a medium for your message

As much as your plan to announce in front of the entire family at Great-Grandma Betty’s 95th birthday sounds like an awesome opportunity, it’s probably going to place your infertile friend or family member in an awkward position. If your heart is set on a face-to-face group announcement, I highly suggest you give your friend a private heads up before the day. Let them have an opportunity to decide whether they want to be there or not.

Depending on the closeness of your relationship, you can share your news face-to-face in an individual setting. Select an activity that is short, yet intimate – like a dinner or coffee date. This gives you a special moment with your friend, but it also gives your friend an escape. They don’t have to feel bombarded with the thought of holding their emotions inside for an entire day.

If you are unable to meet your friend face-to-face or unsure of how they will react, a phone call is a great choice. It’s clearer to gauge an person’s emotion through their voice than their written word. It’s more sincere than a text or social media.  A phone call also gives either one of you an opportunity to quickly end the conversation when you feel the need to.

If your relationship is not as close, a text, email or social media announcement is totally acceptable. In fact, unless you are close, it’s often best to announce your pregnancy as you had always envisioned it.

Decide when to announce

A infertility journey is just as unpredictable as your pregnancy might have been. It’s actually more hurtful to keep it from your friend “for their own sake”. When you face infertility and pregnancy loss, another pregnancy announcement is NOT going to set you over the edge. Dealing with announcements is a hard part of an infertile’s journey, but it’s also a regular occurrence.

You know how people have gay-dar? Well, most people going through infertility have baby-dar. We pick up on it sooner than you think. We catch on to avoidance and wonder if you are declining invites simply to hide your good news.

Consider placing yourself if your infertile friend’s shoes. When do you think she would tell you? Has she been open and honest about her journey?

It’s a personal decision to choose when to announce, but it’s probably a good idea to be mindful of how close of a friendship you have with your infertile friend. Don’t let her be the last person to know if you are likely to be her first person.

Be genuine when you share your news

Life is too short to let the worry of your friend’s reaction take away from the announcement itself. You are blessed to be welcoming a baby into this world! Be excited!

Don’t let the difficult journey of an infertile friend take away the joy from your moment.

Don’t assume your infertile friend will react negatively.

Don’t dwell of the struggles your friend has faced.

Tell them you love them. Tell them you hope they get to experience parenthood in whatever way that comes to them. Remind them that you will be there to support them throughout their journey, just as they will be there for you.

Hug, cry, smile, and laugh.

Be yourself.

Give your infertile friend space if they need it

There are many fears and emotions that surface when faced with infertility.  If a pregnancy announcement catches your friend off guard or on a particularly bad day on their journey, they may need time to digest the announcement before they can share in your joy. Don’t take this personally.

If your relationship is built upon strong pillars, it will endure any sincere announcement. They will reunite with you when their heart and mind are ready to.

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Another one bites the dust

Remember that friend who had that party that made me feel like the infertile in the corner?

Well, she just announced her pregnancy!

Seriously Universe! Can you give me a break here? 

They tried for one, maybe two months, before conceiving.

On top of that, she would have been 5.5 weeks pregnant at that party – smoking cigs, smoking pot and drinking.

GAHHHH!!!!

Fertiles have it so easy. No period tracking. No stress at ovulation time. Hell, they probably don’t even know it’s ovulation time. No care in the world. No rush to find out if it worked. No special diet. No abstaining from anything.

With every announcement, I am happy for my friends. I am relieved that they do not have to face the heartache, stress and uncertainty of infertility.

Yet, their announcements cut me a little deeper. They solidify the challenges we have face and further label us as infertile.

I will never accidentally get knocked up.

I will never conceive after a few months of trying.

I can only hope that my turn is soon and all the time, money, and emotion we’ve put into this journey will be worth it.

Facing the unexpected

Today, my best friend told me she is pregnant.

6 weeks pregnant.

She conceived her baby right around the time I lost mine.

She was crying when she told me.

She said she thought of me right away and that she can’t believe how unfair life is.

They weren’t trying.

In fact, she is just moving in with her boyfriend next weekend.

They are in the process of selling both of their condos and purchasing their first home together.

They are excited but shocked. They didn’t anticipate this.

I held it together quite well on the phone.

I only cried when I told her we only would have been 5 weeks apart.

Would have been…

I am happy for them, but it still hurts.

And not because they got pregnant, but because life selectively challenges us.

I was chosen to face this journey of grief, despair and uncertainty.

The darkness is overwhelming.

There has to be light at the end of this tunnel.

sending light

To my best friend because I know you will read this: Be happy. Do not let fear get the best of you. You are blessed to be pregnant even if the timing isn’t perfect. Celebrate this joyful time. You will be an amazing mother. I am so looking forward to sharing in your pregnancy, birth and the life of your child. Xo.

Proud (in)fertile moments (Part 1)

Last Saturday while at my adorable godson’s 1st birthday, one of my MIL’s best friends walked up to me and said, “Oh I hear your sister is expecting! How exciting!”.

Ugh, how did you find out? OH yeah from my MIL. She doesn’t understand the concept of secret, only within the family, hasn’t been announced publicly yet. *sigh* 

I replied with, “Oh yeah, she is.”

She said, “You must be so excited. 1st grandchild for your parents?”

I took a deep breath before stating, “Um no. My brother had his first child in April.”.

Dig that knife in a little deeper lady. 

She exclaims, “Wonderful!”, and obviously continues on, “Did you hear that so-and-so are pregnant? You know they are keeping their wedding date even though they announced their pregnancy just before it. I guess those things don’t matter these days.”

“Excuse me. I need a glass of water.”

And I walked away.

Yes that’s right. I politely excused myself instead of punching the crazy old lady out. 

A proud (in)fertile moment.

 

 

Just when you least expect it

Yeah,  you guessed right. It’s time for another prego announcement and it definitely isn’t mine!

It’s my sister.

Yes, you read that correctly.

She got engaged last Saturday (as in just over a week ago). Friday afternoon, she contacted the family to discuss doing a destination wedding THIS December. Through our convo,  she admitted to me that their timing is based on the fact that she’s pregnant!

W. T. F.

I’m not sad. I’m not mad (even though she did lie to me after calling numerous times last month to ask me questions about trying to conceive). 

I’m just a bit shocked.

I knew they started trying. I wasn’t sure how serious they were and I didn’t expect another ”first month trying” prego announcement.

Why does this happen with everyone around me –  sister, both sister-in-laws,  my best friend’s wife?

I am even more disappointed in how my Mom and her reacted to our IVF especially since they both were aware of her pregnancy then.

Wake up people!  When are you going to finally see that a whoopsie pregnancy is not in my cards?

Besides another niece or nephew, the best thing about this situation is that my sister’s drama-filled life will take some of the attention off of our upcoming IVF cycle. Score one for us.

I’ve said we will try to make it to the wedding. Most of my close girlfriends think that we shouldn’t even entertain the idea of going. Who knows what will happen between now and December?

No matter what,  she still is my sister. I am happy for her fiancé and her.

I just wasn’t expecting all that this week… Life has a mysterious way of throwing you curve balls. There’s no doubt about that.

Gradual progress towards positivity

CD6. Clomid Day 2. Pending IUI #2. 

In the past 6 months, I’ve been on the receiving end of 2 “whoo(ps)! we’re pregnant!” announcements.

In August, my bro and his wife told me their big news when they were about 6 weeks along. They conceived their first month not using any protection. She didn’t think they would get pregnant for “at least a year” (so says every fertile…) 

This morning, I was having a fertility convo with a friend. I mentioned that I really hope they don’t keep it from me when they get pregnant. One thing lead to another… SURPRISE! They are pregnant  – only 5 weeks. I just offered advice last month for how to deal with regulating your hormones after coming off birth control. It was her 2nd month off birth control. They weren’t timing it or anything. 

How the fuck does this happen to people???? 

I spent about 2 minutes in my usual prego announcement despair. Then, my attitude changed completely. I don’t want to mope around each time I hear about another baby on the way. 

Fuck it! It’s MY TURN! 

It’s my turn to be positive.

It’s my turn to conceive.

It’s my turn to see those two pink lines and jump up and down in excitement.

It’s my turn to plan an exciting way to tell my husband that we are having our baby (but we all know that will fail because I won’t be able to keep it a secret from him for more than 5 mins).

It’s. 

My. 

Turn. 

And if it isn’t? Then, I will stay positive and trust.  

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I opened an email this afternoon to find the photo above.  It made SO MUCH sense to me. 

Later on, I was online browsing and found a home decor sign that said: 

“God didn’t promise days without pain, laughter without sorrow, nor sun without rain, but he did promise strength for the day, comfort for the tears and light for the way.” 

Finding those quotes feels like divine intervention to me. I needed a reminder of why having a good attitude is so important. 

This fertility journey is not an easy ride. It has it’s ups and downs, it’s twists and turns. I need just keep trusting that things will work out – one way or another when they are supposed to.

I’m not insensitive, I’m just (in)fertile

Every (in)fertile cringes upon hearing baby announcements, but it always seems harder to deal with when it’s closer to home.

Our experiences include:

  • My husband’s brother and his wife announcing their 1st pregnancy two weeks before our wedding. Yes, I did think she was trying to steal my thunder. She got pregnant within weeks of her own wedding, 3 months prior.
  • The same sister-in-law announcing their 2nd pregnancy 5 months after we start actively trying to conceive. Surprisingly, I handled this one well. Hubby – not so much.
  • My little brother and his wife announcing their 1st pregnancy – after trying for only 1 month – on the same day we receive our appointment date with the fertility specialist. *cue the extra-strength, double-force water works* I should own stock in Kleenex.

Timing is never perfect… except for anyone who hasn’t experienced (in)fertility.

Last night, my brother emailed me their 20-ish week ultrasound photos. Great! I just got home from picking up my fertility drug prescriptions. Can’t wait to look at your alien baby!

As the photos loaded on my cell phone screen, my mindset changed. With toes, ears and a nose, this baby is beginning to look more human than alien.

My resentment towards my brother and his wife turned into a bubble and drifted away until it finally popped. The feeling was gone.

I am actually looking forward to meeting this little person.

This little soul has no ties. Their intention is pure. Their innocence is real. They deserve my love.

I keep reminding myself that my brother can’t help it. He and his wife are excited for their new baby to arrive and I know I will feel the same way when it’s our turn.

To my brother, his wife and anyone else who will share their pregnancy experiences with us while we undergoing fertility treatments:

Please don’t take it personally if I don’t initially react the way you expect or if I take an extra day to respond. I will share in your joy. I just need to process my ego, so that my true love and light can find their way to the surface. 

Thank you for understanding – even if you truly don’t.

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