Everyone is Pregnant--Except You. How to Copeby Dianna Graveman
The phone rings, and your best friend tells you she's expecting. Again. You open your inbox to check your email and find an evite for another friend's baby shower. Meanwhile, your period just arrived right on time, and another home pregnancy kit sits unopened on the bathroom sink. Better luck next time.
How to cope? How do you keep from feeling angry, left out, frustrated? How do you keep from resenting your friends and their good fortune?
Easy answer: You don't.
It's only natural to feel disappointed if you've been trying to conceive without success. If you've been attempting to get pregnant for several months or a year, it can be downright heartbreaking. And as much as you want to be happy for friends and family members who are not suffering the same difficulties conceiving as you and your spouse or partner, it isn't easy. Especially when a well-meaning acquaintance announces, "It was really a surprise! We weren't even trying!"
It's important to remember, however, that this is not worth losing friends over. Eventually, you too will probably become pregnant, or you may decide to adopt. Either way, you will want your friends to celebrate with you, when it's your turn. And you won't want to miss out on these very special years in the lives of your close friends and their children.
Try to remember that your pregnant friends or those with babies did not do anything to prevent your own pregnancy. None of this is their fault. They are probably very disappointed for you, if they know you are trying. They may have even had a very hard time breaking the news to you about their own pregnancies. A friend who may not have sounded excited about her pregnancy on the phone may have just been trying to curb her feelings out of respect for yours.
Also remember that some of friends--especially those you've only met recently--may have had their own difficulties conceiving. If you weren't acquainted before your friend's first child was born, it is possible things were not as easy for her as you assume. She may have had a miscarriage or spent several months trying to get pregnant, too.
Don't be afraid to talk with your close friends and family about your feelings and what you're going through. Your friends may avoid you if they think you're resentful. You can keep this from happening by maintaining an open, honest relationship with them and letting them know that although you are disappointed you too are not expecting, you are very happy for them.
When you get together with a friend who is expecting or has a new baby, plan ahead to bring up topics the two of you used to enjoy talking about, pre-parenthood. Inquire about the little one or the upcoming event, but then introduce another interesting subject. With a list of topics in mind that you both enjoy discussing, it will be easier to keep the conversation from focusing solely on pregnancy and babies.
If you've consulted your healthcare provider and a fertility specialist, and if you're eating properly and following professional advice about how to increase your chances of conceiving, relax. You're doing everything you can. But it can become easy to let this challenge completely take over your life and prevent you from enjoying activities you used to. Try to find time to focus on other interests, too. Investigate romantic day trips for you and your spouse or partner. Consider enrolling in a class you've always wanted to take. Finish your degree. Take a cruise or vacation, if you can afford it. Consider career alternatives. Take up a hobby. A side benefit might be that you will meet others who are not yet parents and with whom you can expand your circle of friends. But don't ignore your feelings, either. Talk often about your feelings with your spouse. You may find it also helps to keep a journal and write down your deepest feelings--possibly those you don't yet feel ready to share with family and friends
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