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What to think of friend's comment

(17 Posts)
babyboom1979 Fri 31-Jul-09 23:57:41

I was out with my closest friend today who has just had a baby. She fell pregnant first month of trying, had a seamless pregnancy and now has a beautiful daughter. I am so happy for her even though my ttc journey has been rather terrible. It's been almost a year and I have had two miscarriages. I know many people's experiences have been far more difficult but I am starting to feel very sad.

Anyway, we were talking about a woman I am in class with who is adopting a child and my friend suddenly asked me "if you can't have children, will you adopt". To be honest, I had never really thought of the question and suddenly felt like bursting into tears as I found the comment to be incredibly insensitive.

Am I crazy for feeling this way? She is my closest friend and is usally so much more careful, which makes me wonder if perhaps I am being very silly.

Has anyone else had to deal with these sorts of completely unexpected comments? Am I just being an over-sensitive mess? I haven't stopped crying since I got home.

HolyGuacamole Sat 01-Aug-09 00:28:55

Does your friend realise exactly how you have been affected by your ttc and mc over the past year? Or have you maybe held back on telling her how much it affects you because of her pregnancy and wanting to be happy for her?

I doubt she would say something like that meaning it to be offensive but can absolutely, 100% understand why you feel upset about it. She has been insensitive but you sound like really good friends so maybe you can talk about it, or talk to her in a way that lets her know she just has to be a bit more sensitive in future?

Anyone in your situation would find that comment upsetting. Sorry you feel bad, just remember that any good friend would not have meant to hurt your feelings.

nickschick Sat 01-Aug-09 00:36:42

I can see it is an upsetting comment at a time when you are feeling very sensitive .....however....she is your friend you know her vvv well and know in your heart she didnt mean to offend.

I have a friend in the same position as you and every time I say to her that I have something to tell her she looks ready to cry and asks me if im pregnantsad.

The thing is although this to you is horrendous and your yearning doesnt go away sometimes you do have to brave face it purely so you dont become one of those ladies who cant walk past a pushchair.

Having a baby of your own is a lovely thing and theres no saying that you wont have that but sometimes you have to look a bit further out and see that people are only thinking of you in a nice way- my friend got rather upset when her ttc and possibly adopt was compared to passing a driving test for a manual car or taking the automatic test.

I doo feel sorry that you are hurt and I dont think you are being to dram,atic in feeling that way if i was to give you advice i would say to explain to your friend that the comment shocked you andits not a scenario you are planning yet- then move on!!!

babyboom1979 Sat 01-Aug-09 07:31:29

Thank you for your replies. After a good night's sleep I've woken up feeling much better. I just have to face the fact that very well meaning people are not always going to say the right thing and that's ok.

donnie Sat 01-Aug-09 07:44:51

it sounds like she was trying to be helpful....offering alternatives ? if she has just had a baby her hormones will also be shot to pieces and maybe it just came out before she thought it through IYSWIM.

georgimama Sat 01-Aug-09 07:45:11

Just a suggestion nickschick - try not using the phrase "I have something to tell you" to this friend - it's a form of words usually associated with telling someone you are pregnant. Not very sensitive if all you are about to reveal is that you bought a new top in the sale.

OP, when in this situation everything everyone says and does feels crass and insensitive. I have been there before DS was born and I'm there again now having had a second MC in 6 months. Very few people know about either MC because I simply can't face some of the idiotic comments people come out with. They mean well, but really I think most people must be morons.

skidoodle Sat 01-Aug-09 08:12:09

Yes, quite georgimama. At a certain stage if your life "I've something to tell you" will be assumed to mean pregnancy. Just like there was a time when it meant "I snogged the boy I fancy"

I ran into this a bit when a friend in similar circs asked me if I had any news and I said yes, because had just sold our house. There was a second where I could feel her (over the phone) bracing for the news she was sort if dreading and I realized it was not a general wondering, but a very specific one.

OP glad you are feeling better. What your friend said was really insensitive, but almost certainly just that and not meant to hurt, or even have such a big significance. She probably assumed you thought about it.

babyboom1979 Sat 01-Aug-09 08:47:21

Georgimama -- I'm sorry to hear about what you are going through. I sometimes wish I had kept quiet about my miscarriages as well -- even to my closest friend. I really believe that unless one has been through it, it is next to impossible to understand. Hence the comments that come out of well-meaning people that just sound absolutely terrible.

Tbh......I have heard the whole gamut of usual wrong things to say to a woman who has miscarried "it wasnt meant to be", "at least you can get pregnant" etc. etc. but these comments just rolled off my back. However, this one completely blindsided me.

georgimama Sat 01-Aug-09 09:14:40

All those comments were too much for me, tbh.

"At least you can get pregnant" (we had serious fertility problems conceiving DS). Well, thanks, yes, I can conceive babies and then spontaneously miscarry them seven weeks later. Brilliant. Is that meant to be comforting? What effing use is getting pregnant in those circumstances?

whomovedmychocolate Sat 01-Aug-09 09:38:27

Ah but people always say the wrong thing - they either don't comment and then you think they don't care or are too embarrassed to talk to you, or they say something like these examples. There really is no good thing to say other than 'how are you?' and letting you talk is there.

Having been on all sides of this at some point (infertility, miscarriage, successful pregnancies) I've heard all of these and worse (including 'have you considered getting a dog' hmm).

The only thing that makes it better is when things actually do work out and you have the baby. And it's awful but there's nothing your friends can do to help this other than listen to you cry, hold your hand and hope for you.

So please don't be too hard on your friends, they really do want to help, and they don't mean to be hurtful, but if you've not been there (and even if you have sometimes) how the hell do you know what to say?

nickschick Sat 01-Aug-09 09:45:32

I hope you werent suggesting that the phrase i have something to tell you is said in a way to suggest i was pregnant? in my 30s with 2 teen ds and 1 8 year old we certainly arent planning any more babies and the 'i have something to tell you' conversations we share are usually about how much her ebay stuff is selling for (i check it if shes at work) - I have also rang and done a fone interview for a job she wanted but wasnt able to apply for (i knew the employer and as a fellow worker in that field my convo with her prospective employee got her the job) to the fact that a certain kind of wine is on offer at tesco ....all very mundane and its a turn of phrase often used here as i have been listening out hmm.

So I will stick to my earlier conclusion and tell you like I told her ,clearly its a very sensitive thing and I want her to have a baby too but if i were to be found pregnant i wouldnt be having a 'i have something to tell you' convo -i would be going crazy!!!.

babyboom1979 Sat 01-Aug-09 09:48:47

"Why don't you get a dog" has to take the cake. That one is so awful, one almost has to laugh.

skidoodle Sat 01-Aug-09 09:52:36

I don't think it takes a genius to work out that if you've just had a baby it's a little cruel to talk to your friend who's had two miscarriages within a year about what she'll do if she never has children.

I doubt she meant to be so shockingly hurtful, but I can't see any way to interpret that comment as helpful. At best it was thoughtless.

muffle Sat 01-Aug-09 09:52:51

I've been on all sides of this too and have sometimes said things that in retrospect, were insensitive - usually through trying to hard to think of the right thing to say blush

I have also had a lot of insensitive things said to me when taking a long time TTC but usually I just reason that the person doesn't know what to say or doesn't realise how something could be taken. But it's very true that you can cope with a lot and then one small thing will suddenly get to you. While TTC this time, I have had a friend who I see a lot get pregnant and she's now nearly due - I've been fine with that. But when some old colleague emailed me out of the blue to tell me about her new baby, I lost it and burst into tears (was alone luckily).

It's a very difficult time between you and your friend and I actually think you are both to be admired for spending time together, in the circumstances, and not letting your friendship go. I am absolutely sure she didn't mean to be insensitive, and is probably tired and befuddled as well. You are not oversensitive, but at the same time forgive her, and hold onto her.

Wishing you loads of good luck - you have every chance of getting what you want. Look after yourself, can other friends or your partner be supportive too?

BigTeuchLittleTeuch Sat 01-Aug-09 10:00:57

I have also been on both sides, and yet I still find myself saying 'the wrong thing' because the fact is that what is exactly the 'right' thing to say to one person is not for another. And this can change at different stages of ttc or following loss.

I know it is very difficult, but if you can hear the intent rather than the actual words that come from those who care about you, it can actually make you feel more supported and cared for, rather than isolated and misunderstood.

I have to admit, though, that is something I have only fully achieved with hindsight - although I did try at the time and it made things easier.

babyboom1979 Sat 01-Aug-09 10:15:56

Thank asyou for your kind comments muffle....I do have a good support system. My mother had several miscarriages so she has been incredibly understanding and my husband has been an absolute rock. I know my friend didn't mean it. We have known eachother for 15 years so I won't be letting her go any time soon.....

babyboom1979 Sat 01-Aug-09 10:17:02

Sorry......I meant to write thank you....not thank as you!

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