How can I be happy for my friends?!(26 Posts)
Been struggling to get pg for longer than I care to count, nearing 2 years now. Friends seem to get married and fall pg immediately after and revel in their "it happened first time!" Tales. I tell them about my struggles but no one understands, just the old "it will definitely happen for you soon" line gets trotted out and it's never discussed. My three closest friends are currently pg and one of which is due to give birth tomorrow. I cannot summon a scrap of excitement for her and I love her dearly. I have no interest in talking about their babies and I don't want to feel like this. AIBU to ask for tips on how to deal with this. Friends don't relate to me, one posted a passive aggressive Facebook status saying that unless someone had had a baby they weren't welcome to comment or offer advice. I know this wasn't directed at me. Our conversations are all about pg and babies and I hate feeling like I don't know what they're going through or in a position to join in. I tried so hard to be "what wil be will be" about the whole thing but I have found myself becoming really down very rapidly over the past few weeks and feel absolutely hopeless. I am not jealous but feel desperately envious.
It's very hard when you are so desperate to conceive, and it really does crush you mentally. It took me nearly two years for number two and I found it hard when my best friend conceived her second after trying for a short period, I couldn't muster much excitement and felt awful. I just faked it to be honest! Sorry I can't be more help but know you're not the only one woman to feel this way. Are you getting some help with your fertility issues?
I remember that feeling well and I think it's perfectly normal - and perfectly OK too.
Not getting pregnant when you desperately want to be is a completely rubbish feeling and nobody understands how low you can feel unless they have been there themselves.
Do t be hard on yourself - you're absolutely entitled to feel this way.
I really really hope you get what you want very very soon
What you feel is totally normal and your friends are insensitive not to realise it. Maybe you can distance yourself for the time being? One pregnant friend is hard enough but 3 does sound unbearable. You will probably find after a few months they will be desperate to talk about something else and will be much better company. I used to love meeting childless friends as I could talk about all sorts of things and forget about all the day to day baby stuff you get bogged down in.
I remember this so well, it's not like you really resent them it's just that you wish it was you.
It took me ages to get pregnant and it was utterly all consuming and overwhelming. I really do feel for you and remember how all the women who hadn't been trying were so fertile.( or so they claimed)
Try to only think about yourself, whatever they have or don't have really does not effect your day to day life. Chances are you wont even know these people in a few years time.
Just be kind to yourself dwelling on what others do or don't have cannot be good for your mental health, wish them well and focus on your own life and whatever that may bring xxxx
If they are good friends then fake it when you visit the first time. They are likely to be PFB (as most first timers are) so will expect lots of "oohhing and aahhhing" when you visit. They will most likely want to associate with other mums with babies the same age anyway so that can be your get out card.
If it's any consolation I have finished having children and really don't enjoy spending time in "yummy mummy" circles. It's just boring when you are not in that position yourself.
Have you had any fertility tests yet? I know it might feel like you have been TTC for ages, but up to 2 years is still considered normal range for some centres.
I didn't conceive until I was 38 and all my friends had kids by then.
I think that a lot of your friends with children will understand how you feel even if they don't express it.
They might be unsure how to handle it - ignore it, be open, try not to talk babies, and so on.
How would you like to handle it with them? Maybe be honest and say I find it hard and I'm not sure what the right way is to deal with it.
Your friends may even feel guilty that they are pregnant and you are not. I felt like this when talking with someone I knew hadn't been able to conceive. I wasn't sure whether to ignore that and chat away about babies or avoid the subject altogether.
So my advise is be honest if that helps. In theory you are pleased for them but in practice it is difficult.
Forgot to say that the passive aggressive comments on FB may be a bit of resentment towards those who don't have chiildren! As much as I loved mine from the moment they were born, at times I looked at my childless friends and felt that they had it all whilst I was stuck on a sofa breastfeeding and hadn't had a shower in a week.
You don't have to be happy for them
Their good news hasn't added anything to your life. You just say your congratulations and have done.
There isn't a commandment that says. Thy must do a merry dance at every pregnancy announcement. You've been TTC for over 2 years, and the world and his wife, seem to get pregnant on the first shag. I think you're bound and entitled to feel a bit down. I'm sorry for not being more positive, but some times. It's better to be allowed to be upset. Suppressing your feelings. Helps no one.
Love and thoughts to you. Xx.
dolkapots thats awful that you couldn't have a shower for a week.
did you have the baby alone, without any family or friends?
Take time and be gentle to yourself. I was your friend nearly 9 years ago. My best friend had been trying to conceive for 4 years! I fell pregnant after about 9 months ttc and had so many doubts and fears about telling her. So I called her,explained and let her have a good cry on my shoulder. Our eldest Dc are actually 6 weeks apart. She fell pregnant shortly after our conversation. She says she resigned herself to not having dc and it just happened! I know it's doesn't work like that for everyone so I'm not going to suggest you 'forget ttc'. But equally, there's no harm in stepping back a little for a while. If they're good friends they should understand that you can be happy for them whilst still being sad for yourself.
I really feel for you, I felt exactly the same. And no one understood, they all offered me really shitty advice about how I should just have sex all the time - er, I need to have sex when I ovulate and my body was incapable of doing that. I even had one friend with three children, all of whom were conceived within 2 months of trying, suggest that perhaps I didn't want it enough and I should PRAY more. Medical science (rather than praying) helped me conceive. Have you started tests?
And as for your friends, you do just have to fake it. Its crap, I know. When the babies are older, they will have probably have 'friend categories' ie mummy friends and old friends and you will get to see them in the evenings and without the baby etc. That one who said on FB that only people with children could comment would be getting a swift blocking though. If you need to hide people on FB to get through it, do.
Al no I wasn't alone in theory, my husband had just started a new job the day after I came back from hospital and was working very long hours to get established (it was a research post) If baby came off the breast for 3 seconds there was an almighty crying match, and quite frankly I was terrified of the crying as a first time mum (I thought I might be reported to SS ) so I only left him with someone else if I had to go to the toilet. A shower would have taken too long.
Bless you OP, let yourself feel upset and don't feel guilty about it. It's ok and natural to feel how you do, and your friends are being very insensitive. I was pg with my second while my DSis was TTC so I tried not to mention it and just provided a shoulder to cry on when she wanted to talk about her problems. You can't harp on to friends with fertility problems about pregnancy and babies, however excited you are, or offer meaningless platitudes. You just shut up and listen.
for you. We're here to listen if you want to talk.
It took me 4 years to conceive my dd so I can understand how you feel. I was in tears many times after friends has gleefully told me they were expecting and said 'oh it happened first month we tried.' People can be incredibly insensitive.
Fertility Friends was a lifesaver for me as I could connect with others online who were going through the same thing.
I got to the point where I thought it was just never going to happen for me and here I am now with a 4 year old sitting on my lap.
I know how tough it is. Big hugs.
Speaking as someone who is infertile, it helps me, when faced with similar, to try to remember it isn't all about me. Other people have babies, go on holidays, get promotions, have lives, regardless of my achievements or failures. Compartmentalising their pregnancies, separate to my own inability to conceive, is quite freeing. Letting go of jealousy is a massive relief when you just let it go and let them be them and you be you without judgement or comparison.
Also, it helps when I make mental notes about how sick and fat they are and go home to my wine safe in the knowledge that I'd have done it so much better!
My utmost sympathies. I think for anyone who hasn't experienced infertility it is terribly, terribly difficult to understand and while your friends might understand in theory, they can't possibly know what it is like to be you - not really.
Tinkfromlovejoy's advice sounds very healthy as does Xmasbaby's - if you're finding it hard to be around them, avoid them for a bit and focus on having fun with your childless friends instead. As you've been honest, I'm sure they'll understand.
Oh how I relate to this. It took me over 3 years and one IUI to get pg at a time when nearly all of my friends were getting pg. I've still not quite forgiven one particularly insensitive friend imploring my understanding of how difficult it was for my friends (one of whom was there) for them to cope with their pregnancies when I was suffering from sub-fertility - this was 15 + years ago. Be kind to yourself; you're totally NBU to feel utterly crushed each time a pregnancy is announced. I really hope it does happen for you soon.
It took me 8 years to get pregnant the first time and then I miscarried. I was very fortunate in that I did later have four healthy babies (although also a stillbirth and several more miscarriages). To be honest I try not to think about how I felt back then when friends and relatives had babies and I couldn't. It all seems to be such a mess of pain and hopelessness.
The one thing that made me feel better was to take some sort of control and do what I could to get the right tests and treatment (not always easy, sometimes you do have to be quite pushy). There were also a few friends who I could just tell that it was too painful for me to visit newborn babies, but I would go when things had quietened down and I was more able to deal with it.
As others have said, be kind to yourself. Some things are just really hard and this is one of them. So it's fine to be upset and resentful and jealous and anything else you feel.
Totally understand and have been there and remember the pain and despair vividly.
The poster who says step back and stop thinking about it - you can't. You just can't. It is all consuming and weighs you down everyday. That advice doesn't work it just makes you angry. How can I stop thinking about the thing I want most in the world? How can I stop thinking that it may never happen for me? That I'm a freak and it happens so easily for others? That I may never have the future I hoped and dreamed about all my life? Not thinking about it is not an option.
I really hope you get what you want soon. It took me 2.5 years and 2 rounds of IVF and I now have my 21 month old son.
But oh I remember it well. Sometimes I just wanted to throw myself down the stairs, the pain was too much.
This is a totally normal way to feel. When I was trying (and failing) to get pregnant, I pulled together a list of possible baby names. One by one, my friends had kids and used all my bloody names.
One thing that would get on my wick was when people said "Oh, you should just relax" (that really wouldn't have helped).
One friend actually said "well, just adopt".
If you are having trouble conceiving, give yourself permission to avoid the more baby focused activities. You can pop round and admire the new babies but it doesn't mean you have to keep going round.
Crucru - you're right. It's not trying to get pregnant, its failing. Failing every month. It's crushing.
Boy do I know how you feel. It took me 4.5 years to get pregnant with a lot of IVF. For a long time lots of people didn't know and then I flipped my attitude and told people.
Your friends are understandably excited to be pregnant and it is only fair for them to have their joy. You don't have to be happy for them though and faking it is really the only solution when with them so as not to hurt their feelings.
However, your feelings matter hugely. If they cannot discuss anything else bar babies and being around them at this time makes you feel crap then pull away a bit. Good friends understand in the long term when you feel in a place to genuinely be happy for their situations, regardless of how yours pans out.
Also do yourself a favour and avoid Facebook. At a certain age it gives way from engagement notices, to wedding pics and then lots and lots of children. It is not fun. There will be people who know you who desperately want a partner but can't get one and they will suffer hearing of your happiness as well. The reality is that we at various points of our lives find that we get stuck and can't move forward for circumstances outside of our control. That doesn't mean we have to stoicly put ourselves in the line of fire in the privacy of our homes via the web to exacerbate feelings of envy / dread that it is never going to happen.
Get to the doctor, demand help and do everything you can. Only once you have walked the path of treatment, regardless of the result, can you honestly move forward and get to the next phase of your life. Best of luck
I've been in that situation (ended up with successful IVF but it took many years) and if is so hard, especially when friends start TTC after you and those babies are then born. And very few people understand the sense of loss each month when you've not 'lost' anything. I'm perhaps a bit strange but I decided my friends lives were changing and I had a choice to be interested and involved or to step back with the chance that these friendships will fade. So I went for being interested and have ended up with a gaggle of gorgeous children around me who I love as a result, and have kept my good friends. Being pregnant and a new mum is all consuming and a lot of the chat did revolve around that, but once the first few years passed friends were desperate for non child chats and nights out. I was very lucky in that my friends were very patient with me and listened when I needed to offload. Are there any support groups in your area if friends and family are unable/ don't know how to help? And do chase the doctor and tests if you haven't already. I found that you have to be a little pushy to get help sometimes. Good luck
Wow thank you SO much for all your kind replies. You're all absolutely right. I am receiving fertility treatment currently (4th round of clomid which will hopefully work this time. If not, we'll be trying IUI).
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