Monday, January 10, 2011

Fear of Being Fertile

Obviously not in the literal sense, but I am feeling bad about something that happened today that made me feel like one of those fertiles. You know, the bitchy insensitive ones.... In general, I've tried to be really open about our difficulties in conceiving, because I know how isolated I have felt through this whole thing, and how big a difference the one person I know who talked publicly about going to an RE made in my life. But I've also stopped telling every single person the details of the IUI because it seems almost self-indulgent to say it people when they may not want the conversation to last that long. All of which is unnecessary lead-up to what happened today in a meeting I had.

I was meeting with a lovely woman I work with, with whom I get along really well. We don't know each other well, but I think we like each other as people as well as coworkers. I see her very infrequently because she works off site. Towards the end of the meeting, it seemed appropriate to tell her that I'm pregnant, partly because I see her rarely and I thought she might be offended if she heard through the grapevine. She has two beautiful kids, and I have assumed since I met her (with no actual evidence) that she was done having children. But I've known her for a few years, so it didn't seem unwarranted. Fie on all my assumptions! When I told her, we had been discussing an upcoming conference. She then told me that she had been pregnant until two months ago. She got incredibly unlucky, and was one of the few who miscarries because of amnio. She was due in April. I must have looked completely stricken, but I hope I recovered well enough that I didn't make it too much worse. She seemed fine, so I feel like a total jerk for being more upset than she was in that moment. I don't want to make it worse, or make her feel like she needs to worry about my feelings, or the reaction of the next person she tells. I should know better!! I just feel terrible for not responding better, and for forcing her to think about it then when she wasn't expecting it. Obviously, I did not try to make up for it by explaining that my reproductive life hasn't been easy either, because honestly, I don't feel like any amount of unsuccessful trying holds a candle to loss. And I'm not that much of a jerk to make it about me at that moment. Instead, I gave her a hug, and she explained that she hadn't been planning to attend this conference since it's right before her due date, but now she's trying to see the new possibilities in the next couple of months. The conference would definitely be very distracting, so I hope she gets to go. I'm also hoping that some good may come of her telling me, even though my initial reaction wasn't so good, because this way she'll have someone to talk to at the conference if she needs it. Through the whole thing she seemed really good, but I'm still feeling like a jerk. I have resolved to do better in the future, because I should be continually striving for sensitivity.

But I just don't think there's a worse scenario than saying to someone, "I'm pregnant," and having them say, "I used to be pregnant." Worst case for everyone involved.


  1. Oh, honey, don't feel so bad. While I'm sure that it is tough for her, it also sounds like she maybe wanted to open up and talk about it and you gave her a good opportunity to do so. It seems like you will be good support for her in the future. I know it isn't easy for her, but you definitely weren't being callous about it or whining about being pregnant -- THAT would have been bad.

    I read a quote (I think by Elizabeth Edwards?) that said that you shouldn't feel bad bringing up a loss fearing that you'll remind the person of the loss. They have never forgotten the loss but it is nice knowing that other people haven't forgotten either. (She said it much more eloquently.)

  2. Hi! Thanks for stopping by my blog :) How far along are you? So neat to see pictures from your NT scan! I love that you were able to see your baby move. I think you are a couple weeks ahead of me... I look forward to staying connected to your journey! Congrats on baby :)

  3. Responding to your last post... :)

    I live in Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota. I am glad that I can follow your journey and I am totally with you... I can't believe we are dealing with life post-IF, as it seems like that's all we've known for so long. But - definitely enjoying life being pregnant :)

    I also noticed that we've been TTC since the same month you and your husband have... crazy how this month marks 2 years since the process began.

    Looking forward to staying connected!