Being there for my friend struggling with infertility whilst I am pregnant

posted 2 weeks ago in Babies
Post # 2
4210 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

My personal advice is to give her space. If she hasn’t chosen to come to you to talk about it, I’d assume that for whatever reason, she doesn’t want to. You going to her to try and offer comfort (especially as someone who is pregnant), while well-meaning, may not be what she wants right now. 

Post # 3
1194 posts
Bumble bee

View original reply
@saratiara2:  I agree with this approach.  While I’m now also pregnant, when I was struggling I just really wanted to be left alone.  I didn’t have words to articulate how I felt because I wasn’t even sure myself.  I was so happy for others, so sad for myself, and so lost because I knew that I had absolutely no control over it.  I think it’s a very personal struggle between your friend and her partner and if she wants to open up, she’ll let you know.  But try not to be hurt if she doesn’t want to open up to you because you’re pregnant; it will likely just make it harder for her.  She also probably wants to be a good friend and not make you feel like you can’t talk about your pregnancy, because that’s obviously a big part of your life right now, but I can’t imagine how difficult it must be for her to hear it.  You know?  I would just give her space and at the same time, try not to let your sensitivity to her make you feel any misplaced sense of guilt over your own pregnancy.  You do have every right to enjoy it too!

Post # 4
3572 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

As someone who went through years of infertility, I agree with giving her space. Chat about other things as normal but understand if she doesn’t want to talk baby. Also be understanding if she isn’t first to accept any baby showers or to join in the baby chat.

if she is quiet, it’s nothing personal. She knows it’s not your fault that you can have a baby and she can’t. 

Post # 5
356 posts
Helper bee

I’m currently pregnant with my IVF baby, and I had a few friends get pregnant while I was struggling. Give her space and be understanding if she doesn’t talk to you as much during this time. She loves you and is happy for you but she’s in pain, and she’s likely feeling guilty for feeling jealous or sad about your pregnancy.  

Post # 6
1367 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2019 - City, State

I don’t think that you are the right person to be there for her. I think she would be better comforted by someone in her position, like a support group. I would just leave it alone. 

Post # 7
4681 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

I agree that space is important, but with the caveat that you need to be careful not to unintentionally cut her off because you don’t know what to do or say. She might feel like she’s being ignored or left behind because she’s not pregnant, even if that’s not true. Don’t force contact, but if you already talk, text, or otherwise communicate with her regularly, keep doing so – but not about your pregnancy. Talk about the other things in your life – even if it’s just your new favorite show to binge-watch or a funny meme you found. It’s a subtle reminder that your friendship is still intact despite your different circumstances and that she still matters in your life. 

If she does turn to you for support, let her vent or mourn. It’s not you she’s angry at, even if it feels like that. On the same tone, don’t take it personally if she chooses to step back for awhile. She may feel that’s necesary to preserve her own mental health or the friendship.

Post # 8
1678 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2019

You don’t really have a choice but to act like you don’t know about her failed IVF. Because she didn’t tell you herself. If she wanted you to know she would have told you directly. Depending on how private of a person she is, this friend spreading that info might be very upsetting to her. It wasn’t your friends place to spread her private info. Enjoy your pregnancy and just be sensitive to her in general, don’t say anything insensitive to her but also don’t tip toe around her in a way she will notice. 

Post # 10
1928 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

This is hard because everyone grieves over this differently. For me, I couldn’t talk about it. the sadness just spilled over into every area of my life and I didn’t even know how to put it all into words. I didn’t even realize how many times I thought about it per day until I got pregnant magically and that veil was lifted. It seriously impacts everything. What I watched, what I read, seeing siblings at the grocery store, seeing a pregnant lady in public, my relationship with my husband. Infertility touches everything. I’d think the simple message of condsolences and an offer to talk if she needs is about all you can do. 

if you’re really close, and the type of friends that do this, you could send her a little care package. My best friend sent me a fertility keychain once and I still have it. She’s just gone through THREE rounds of IVF which takes such a huge toll on your body. It’s constant injections and scans and ups and downs and wild hormones. It takes a lot out of you. Maybe send her some things she likes that would help relax her and treat herself to some self care. 

Post # 11
3922 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

View original reply
@londongirl1988:  This is hard. I went through nearly five years of infertility and three miscarriages and I still have no clue what to say to other women or what advice to give. For me, towards the end, it would ruin my whole effing day/weekend. Every failed treatment or miscarriage was so overwhelming that I couldn’t talk about it, but I remember who reached out and who didn’t. 

I think texting her that you are thinking of her is great. Depending on the type of person she is, I second the care package. Fuzzy socks, a good comfort movie, a bottle of her favorite wine, etc. After a failed fertility treatment, I told a friend that I was done. I was losing faith. She bought me a mustard seed necklace with a note that said, “Please don’t give up hope” and it really, really made me feel seen and understood. I wear it every single day. From there, I would just let her know you are thinking of her from time to time. I wouldn’t go overly sympathetic and I’d keep mum on baby chat unless she asks. But just checking in and making sure she’s seen will work wonders!

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