I find it very difficult to wrap my head around people who just end up pregnant without trying. I understand that it happens but it just is so strange to me. So, how do you deal with friends that just end up pregnant? How do you deal with the idea of doing it once and having it work for them?
Secondly, if you can get over the fact that for some people this just happens, how do you make your friend comfortable with telling you that they are expecting? I feel like a lot of times, I get angry that this happens to my friends/family.
How do I not put pressure on my friends (that know we’re having trouble), to the point where they don’t feel comfortable even announcing their pregnancy to me?
How do we get over these hurtles?
First off I hated hearing about people who were trying to get pregnant. All I could think was “great another person who will be pg before me.” That’s the honest truth. I started to look at everyone around me as ticking time bombs... will that cousin get pg again before me? What about my newly married brother? Will I have a friend get pg before they even get married? How would I deal with that? I couldn’t be there for them…
EVERYONE WAS THE POTENTIAL ENEMY.
Harsh as it may seem, I so often felt that way. Each friend who helped me along the way would instantly jump to the “other side” the second she announced her pregnancy. And thus would begin yet another pregnancy to “deal with”.
I feel sick even writing this, because I HATE that I ever felt this way towards other people. And I pray that anyone close to me reading this will be protected against old wounds opening back up. I would never want to re-hurt anyone by sharing from my experience.
But that’s my intro!
To answer the question more specifically, I struggled A LOT with the fact that some people just got pregnant. When you break down all that has to go into an IVF cycle (or any cycle for that matter), all the obstacles the sperm have to go through, and then you add the bonus of misshapen/misguided/mismade/confused sperm to the issue… it seriously seems impossible that ANYONE could ever get pg.
And yet they do. And often. I had a really hard time wrapping my head around the basic scientific facts. What is so easy for 5/6 people in this world, was almost impossible for us. And that hurt. It seems SO SIMPLE. Why couldn’t our bodies do it right? We were clearly made for each other, so why didn’t we work?
What was worse was that I often compared my life to the said pregnantee. It was so easy for me to line up our perfect plan next to their plan and list the many many reasons why we should have been pregnant first, and not them.
But the cold hard truth is it didn’t matter. It didn’t matter who had more money in the bank or who had been married longer or who had been trying longer (or trying at all) because it was simple. Life doesn’t work that way.
I had to tell myself this over and over and over and over (and then over again). Life isn’t fair. It’s not how it works.
I refer back to my previous post about my realization that I deserve nothing I have in life. Many people deserve the husband I have, the family I have, the house I have, the life I have much more than me. And MANY people live through a lot crappier things than I have and they don’t deserve that either. So I just had to remind myself of that. Life doesn’t work like checks and balance. It’s not always fair and pretty.
So I stopped making the lists. They were only serving to drive me more insane and angry. And they could only hurt my relationships along the way.
As far as making my friends comfortable? Well I am NO expert on this subject. It’s by God’s grace alone that some very close people to me (including my sister) didn’t run for the hills after telling me they were pg.
I think of all the blogs I’ve ever read, I truly reacted the worst to pregnancy announcements. For me there wasn’t the “I’m happy for you, just sad for me”. I wasn’t happy, not for a LOOOONG time. A few people were the exception… but I general it took months of prayer and healing to move passed the anger I felt towards the whole rotten situation.
Because it wasn’t fair.
Ididn’t hate my friends; I didn’t hate their baby’s or their pregnancy’s. I just hated all of it… the fact that I was infertile and they were not. And the fact that all I could think was angry thoughts while sobbing for days on end when they were experiencing the happiest time of their lives.
The fact that their joy caused me pain.
So how did I make them comfortable? I didn’t L I most likely made it worse. But I made it very clear to all my friends that if they got pg they were to tell me over email. I couldn’t handle face to face or phone conversations. I needed them to know that, so they didn’t have to try and figure out how to tell me.
And often after I’d find out someone was pg, I’d tell them exactly what I needed. I needed space, I needed time to heal. I needed their patience, I needed their forgiveness… I still needed their support.
It was all about me, me, me. And honestly looking back I don’t know how I could have done it any different. Even just thinking about it now makes me ache to the core. I remember so vividly the pain I went through with each announcement. And as much as I hated going through it, I hated that I put my friends through that.
So after I asked for space, or told them what I needed, I would slowly start asking them questions about their pregnancy. ONLY when I could, and only when I had it in me. But I’d made sure they knew I genuinely wanted to know and I genuinely cared. Those times were far and few, but I took extreme advantage of the times I could step out of my selfish shell and offer support to them. I only wish it had come more often.
I only had one openly struggle with me not being there for her when she had walked with me through so much.
The only thing I had to offer in explanation was I couldn’t justify my behavior, it was completely irrational and I hated it, but I had to protect myself the only way I knew how.
Was I right? I don’t know…. It’s so hard to know. But I continued to pray FERVEROUSLY that God would change my heart and change it fast, because that was my only ally.
If I did NOT answer your question, we can absolutely email more about this :-)
Being the person on the “other side” of this issue, I can not possibly tell you how to go about being there for your friends when it can hurt you so much.
However, one thing that I can say for sure, is no matter how easy of a time one of your friends or family members had in getting pregnant….they have their struggles. So, as hard as it is for you to watch them get pregnant, it may be that hard for them watching you in a happy marriage.
Or have, not only enough money to pay your bills, but also enough to go on vacations, or remodel your house.
Or, they may see you with your parents or siblings and grieve to the core that yours are still alive. Or in your life.
Or or or…..I obviously could go on and on.
One thing I DID struggle with in this journey is feeling like to Rachel, NONE of these things compared to her struggle. For me personally, finances have been a veeerrryyy hard thing for my husband and I (some our own doing…most not). It was SO hard to watch Rachel and Joey go on vacation after vacation amongst other things, but I knew that they had every right to do so. But, it was so hard when Rachel would say things or insinuate things such as “well, at least you have kids”. Her hurt and my hurt were not comparable…but that didn’t mean they weren’t both real. And I wondered, if her hurt was so bad, why did it make her ANGRY that I did not have to endure that same hurt? Would it be easier on her if I had had to struggle for years to get pregnant? I pray that she NEVER knows financial struggles the way we have.
I know full well that no matter what, you will hurt over the struggle to have a baby. I know full well that what I am about to suggest will NOT take that hurt away.
However, the more you can look at other people, the less your hurt will consume you. So, my encouragement would be that you look at each of these friends and family members…I mean REALLY look…and see what is in their lives that is hurting them…possibly to the point of consuming them. And, in doing this, reach out to them. Walk through their pain with them. It will make them walking through your pain with you much easier.