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How do I tell my friend I don't want to meet her new baby?

(44 Posts)
Hope2409 Tue 09-Aug-16 21:09:47

Hi everyone,
I am new here and just looking for a little advice. My husband and I have been ttc for over 3 years and are due to start our first round of IVF/ICSI in October this year.
Two of my close friends are pregnant, one is having her third child in December, in the time I have been ttc I will have seen her have two children and whilst I am happy for her I am also crazy jealous that in that time she will of had two more children and I can't even manage one.
My other friend is due her first child next week. Neither of them know about our struggle to conceive as we are quite private people and I just felt that they wouldn't understand. I have kept my distance during their pregnancies only seeing them every now and then as I found it difficult, we have mostly kept in contact over the phone.
However the one due next week keeps trying to arrange to meet up and I just know once the baby comes she will be expecting me to go round and right now the thought of it terrifies me. I really just don't want to see her baby......but how do I tell her that?! I don't want to be rude and certainly don't want to loose her as a friend but I'm not strong enough to be around her at the moment.

Has anyone else been in a similar situation? Any advice would be much appreciated!!!

PalacePalacePalace Tue 09-Aug-16 21:27:02

I've been the pregnant friend. For months I thought I'd done something wrong and my friend didn't care about me. The silent treatment was awful - always wondering what was going on.

I would tell your friends exactly what is going and how you are feeling. If they are true friends they'll be relieved and will understand if you want to take a back seat for a while.

They are your friends. They'll understand.


BeingATwatItsABingThing Tue 09-Aug-16 21:29:21

You will kill the friendship if you don't tell them what's going on.

flowers for you though. I hope you have success with your TTC.

fabulous01 Tue 09-Aug-16 21:38:06

Hi. I have been there as the one who struggled and did 6 IVF attempts. Some of my friends didn't have a clue so I went and did my thing with them and sometimes howled with tears when I got home. Now I have twins and I have friends who I know are struggling and I never hear from them.
You have to decide what you want. Go, get through it and keep some form of friendship. Don't go, don't respond etc and lose the friendship. It is your decision based on what you can cope with
The friends who did know what I was going through were mixed. Some understood and played it low key. Some didn't understand and were insensitive so by telling people doesn't necessarily mean it will make it easier on you
But you will need to put yourself first as IVF is horrendous and you will need every coping strategy you have available to cope with everyday life. Good luck with your journey

kilmuir Tue 09-Aug-16 21:42:44

These are your friends. I struggled to have first baby, but always made a point of celebrating friends having a baby. It wasn't always easy. I knew they would be thrilled when my turn came.
I would tell them a little about your struggle, but please done lose a friendship by not meeting their baby

foursillybeans Tue 09-Aug-16 21:44:46

I've been the pregnant friend too. In fact relative in my case. It is awful wondering what the matter is and why a friend suddenly doesn't want to see you or the little person you have made.

The best thing to do would be to ring your friends and tell them everything and then explain you can't see the baby but offer congrats by card or another why. Or when they have had the baby meet them a month or so later and ask them not to tell you the birth story if you think it will be too much.

Don't just ignore them though. It is hurtful to them and should matter as much as your own feelings if they are friends of yours.

Good luck with ttc.

foursillybeans Tue 09-Aug-16 21:46:11

Btw when I say tell them everything I meant as it being honest with them. Not that you need to share every last detail if you are a private person.

Ellieboolou27 Tue 09-Aug-16 21:48:43

5 years ago I was in your shoes, 3 mc, one stillborn and no baby. All my friends were pregnant,even my boss who had terrible struggles ttc was pregnant, I felt very, very bitter. However unless you've been in that situation, people just don't tend to understand. I felt exactly like you when friends babies were born, one was born six weeks after my stillborn boy (she also had a boy), but I still went and saw their babies. I won't lie, it was really really hard and I kept it short and when I left, I cried my eyes out and felt very low. Five years down the line I have 2 beautiful girls, I know, really know, where you are coming from but do try and visit, if they are close then maybe say you are a bit fragile, however, hopefully in the not too distant future you will have your own child(ren) and be in the position to offer similar advise to others. flowers

Shallishanti Tue 09-Aug-16 21:50:22

they're not mind readers
write it down if it's easier, then you can say exactly what you want without being interupted (or told the story about their cousin) maybe say you'll ring them a few days after they have read the letter and take it from there

Ilikesweetpeas Tue 09-Aug-16 21:52:18

I don't have an answer but I wanted to send you flowers. I'm in a similar situation, I can usually hold it together but recently cried when seeing a friends baby. I couldn't help it. It's so tough. Maybe try to explain / email them so that they have done small idea of what you're going through. I so hope that you get good news soon. Take carec

NerrSnerr Tue 09-Aug-16 21:56:54

If you want them to remain friends you have to plaster a smile on and go and see them or tell them the truth. If you continue ignoring them they'll think you don't want to be friends anymore.

Grittzio Tue 09-Aug-16 21:59:27

I've been the one that struggled, 6 years to have DS, for me it wasn't the babies I didn't want to see, it was pregnant women with their bumps in general, I saw the pregnancy as like the first stage which I couldn't achieve and the baby as the second stage and I suppose I sort of dealt with it that way if that makes sense? Good luck with your treatment x

Haffdonga Tue 09-Aug-16 22:02:57

You were my friend. When my ds was born she told me was sorry but she found it really difficult to be around babies as she was struggling to conceive.

Of course I understood and was so grateful that she'd trusted me enough to tell me. It also meant I was so very happy for her when she later gave birth to twins. smile

ExtraShot Tue 09-Aug-16 22:06:03

Me and DH have been the friend and knowing friends who were ttc. We dreaded telling them and when baby was born we let them contact us. I still don't know if we did the right thing.

Hope2409 Tue 09-Aug-16 22:06:06

Thank you all so much for your advice, i have not really thought about it from my friends side before they must wonder what my problem is at times!!!!
I really don't want to loose the friendship tho so i think i do need to sit down and have a chat with them and take it from there.
I think i have got so wrapped up in trying and preparing for IVF that i can't concentrate on anything else, but all your kind words have given me hope and strength, thank you!

ExtraShot Tue 09-Aug-16 22:14:43

It's easy to get wrapped up in it. I bled on and off for months when I was pregnant and I lost as sense about anything but that! Good luck and I'm sure your friends will be supportive. Sometimes it's difficult to know what to do being the friend and I can only sympathise with how difficult it is for you xxxxx

OMGtwins Tue 09-Aug-16 22:16:39

We had this, I remember going to a friends house for their kids 1st birthday and being surrounded by littles. Lovely event but like so many other people I cried buckets as soon as we left.

Big hugs to you, and yes just say something, because our friends were wonderfully supportive as soon as we told them too.

Later we were also the ones who had kids and had people who were distant, we saw it for what it was and let them choose when to see us, for how long and where.

BoaConstrictor Tue 09-Aug-16 22:28:32

I have also been the pregnant friend. With DC2, three close friends performed a disappearing act, two of whom had been gushing about DC1, very generous with gifts for both DC1 and me and, despite not living close, making the effort to visit & to offer support. The third friend had been quite ambivalent about DC1.
I had no idea what was going on, was conscious something was but didn't have the headspace to think about it too much (as well as the usual newborn stuff, DC2 had reflux, DH was often travelling with work & closest family live 4hrs away and we'd recently moved to the area so didn't have many any friends locally). I contacted them a few times but, as my phone calls, texts & emails went unreturned, decided to leave them to it & hope that I hadn't done anything to offend & that they got in contact with me in due course. This didn't stop me pondering what I had done wrong at regular intervals.
A year down the line, Friend A did send me a fairly short email to say she was conscious it must be DC2's birthday around now, to apologise that she hadn't been in touch but went on to explain that earlier in DC2's birth month she had found out her DH was having an affair and a few weeks later her mum was diagnosed with cancer & died shortly afterwards. I immediately realised why a "new baby" card hadn't been at the top of her to do list! I replied to her email without mentioning my DC, rang her a few weeks later & she returned my call and our friendship picked up where it left off. Friend A and I had met whilst doing temporary jobs as students and so had no mutual friends.
I didn't hear from Friend B until DC2 was 2.5 and that was a text to say she was 24 weeks pregnant, very excited etc etc. My ears immediately pricked up as it seemed late in the day to make an announcement. I rang her to congratulate her, we eventually met up and, as I'd guessed by that stage, they'd struggled to conceive, had had two miscarriages, one at about 19 weeks & had generally had a hideous few years and understandably didn't want to be surrounded by pregnant women or new babies. Our friendship isn't quite what it was but a lot of that is due to her having moved abroad.
Friend C I have never really heard from, nor have other mutual friends, all of whom have children. From FB, I know that she is married & has lots of fabulous looking holidays & is always out but of course doesn't post "I am so glad I chose to be child free and to do these things rather than a week a Centre Parc" or "fabulous holiday but I'd rather be at Centre Parcs with snotty children if only I could have them".
If you're still reading, other friends were open about their struggles to conceive and I tried to be supportive, trying to meet them without the DC (not always possible) and making sure I didn't gush about the DC and actually had other things to talk about.
No one can put themselves in your shoes; no one knows how your pregnant friend will feel. Personally, I did appreciate those who gave me some information as I knew what I was dealing with but that does make it about me rather than you.

Hope2409 Tue 09-Aug-16 22:31:18

Ilikesweetpeas, thank you for the e-mail idea i think writing it down might be a little easier for me at the moment, good luck with whatever journey u r on flowers

i already feel a bit more positive from reading everyones comments! It just makes me feel less alone and crazy knowing other people struggle seeing pregnant womens bumps and cry at babies!


livinginabox Tue 09-Aug-16 22:38:44

I think being honest with people is the best way forwards. A friend of mine found out she had gone through the menopause at 32 when I was pregnant. She text me after he was born to say she couldn't cope with seeing me/the baby, which I completely understood.

From there on I just took things at her pace, met up with her for a year or so on my own let until she said she wanted to meet him and I let her guide the conversation around DC's/infertility. Sometimes we spoke about it, sometimes we didn't. Ended happily and years later she has her own DS but her journey was a long and painful one, so my heart goes out to you flowers

Hope2409 Tue 09-Aug-16 22:46:39

Thanks BoaConstrictor, i dont want my friends thinking they have done anything wrong and that i have disappeared and actually if it were the other way i would want to be given a heads up so i could support them as best i can n didnt put my foot in it!
So simple now you say it i don't know why i didnt look at it that way before, it good to hear how it effects both sides, thank u x

OlennasWimple Tue 09-Aug-16 22:51:24

I've been on both sides - it's hard isn't it flowers

Many people who know me wouldn't realize the pain we have been through to have our two DC, and there may be something you don't know about your friend - she might have struggled to conceive, or had previous mc.

Talk to her, and be kind to yourself

Amara123 Tue 09-Aug-16 22:54:32

Hi Hope

I might be coming from a slightly different perspective in that some of my close friends have been incredibly insensitive despite having been told. I think that you probably should tell them but please protect yourself by having very low expectations of how supportive or understanding they might be. To be honest ivf is an emotional shitshow so don't feel like you have to go out educating people how to be understanding about infertility, put yourself first. Nobody really understands infertility unless they have been there.

best of luck!

m0therofdragons Tue 09-Aug-16 23:02:55

I agree with lots that's been said but just wanted to add, in the same way they don't know what you've been through, you don't know what they've been through.
If you met me you'd see a woman with 3 healthy dc. You wouldn't see the two mc babies, the scare dd1 gave us at 32w pg that resulted in being blue lighted from one hospital to another, the terrible first 6 hours of dd2's life where I didn't meet her as she was being resuscitated etc.
My understanding is that IVF is all consuming (that's not a criticism, it is what it is) and hard to see outside of that. I wish you all the best op.

BoaConstrictor Tue 09-Aug-16 23:06:03

OP what I was trying to get across in my final paragraph (but Amara has put much more eloquently), is that telling people may lead to more upset for you. You have no idea if people will be sensitive to what you're going through or if their "sensitive" is, from your perspective, completely insensitive. I have no idea what you or friends in similar situations are going through and realise that, whilst I would like to help, there is actually little I can do to help other than offer a listening ear when you need to rant/cry/moan. Don't make yourself more vulnerable unless you feel it might help you or your friendship (if it is the sort of friendship which is lasting rather than a convenience one as you work together or that sort of thing).

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