My Friend is Pregnant and I’m Not…Anymore
I’ve been reading your sites forever, and lurve you. and your wiseness/amazing ability to solve problems! This is my problem.
A few of my friends have recently found out they were pregnant. I did the cootie dance and doubled the B/c, but to no avail, Surprise surprise, the pregnancy bug hit. I wasn’t that thrilled when I found out, but I did get happy about it a few days later. Because I couldn’t remember when my last menstrual was, I got to see the Doctor earlier then the usual 8-12 weeks. And we saw a sac. with nothing in it. Not to worry, said the doctor, its probably too early to see anything. Fast forward a week and two betas, and I’m back in the stirrups, and now, the doctor sees a blobby thing. Hmmm says the Doctor. I am sent to the big high-tech ultrasound place at the local radiologists office that day. hmmm says the tech. (This is not my first baby, and obviously, even I can tell that there is no heartbeat on the weird blobby thing). I can’t tell you anything, says the tech, you have to call the doctor and he will give you the results.
The results were not good.
Fast forward ANOTHER week and I’m in the O/R having a D and C for a suspected molar pregnancy( a week from tomorrow will be a full week since). Which was, to say the very least, not pleasant…even with general anesthesia.
One of my friends was incredibly supportive and watched my children all during the day of and the day after the procedure. That friend, such a good friend(!) is one of the friends who is pregnant. And today, she and her husband found out that they are having a girl. Which YEA! but also, poor me.
I want to be supportive and helpful and all “how are you feeling?” and “is it moving?”, because I love her, it’s the right thing to do, and I’d be an incredibly shitty friend if I didn’t.
But still. OW.
I know, count my blessing, I already have two perfectly healthy children… blah blah cakes. I do not want to be this mean girl!
How can I stop feeling so sorry for myself and enjoy my friend’s pregnancy?
Bear with me for a second here — I’m diving right into writing today before my coffee has fully kicked in — but do I really have this timeline right? That you are only ONE WEEK past your D&C and you are already beating yourself up over…feeling sad about your D&C? You are already beating yourself up over being a “shitty friend” and a “mean girl” because you can’t quite yet muster up a ton of HAPPY SHINY FUN LOVE YAY over someone else’s pregnancy…ONE WEEK after losing your own?
Screw counting your blessings. Screw all that stuff about it being a surprise pregnancy and maybe not even initially what you wanted. Screw putting on a big fake happy front. You go ahead and let your sad flag fly, girlfriend.
(Okay, I can’t really pull off “girlfriend,” can I? Even I’m laughing at myself now. Loser.)
You say this pregnant friend is a good friend. She sure sounds like it. And if she is a good friend, trust me, SHE UNDERSTANDS. She’s probably wondering how to make her pregnancy easier on YOU, and what she should say to YOU. Trust me, I’ve gotten this question from HER side of the table — the “I’m pregnant but my best friend miscarried/can’t conceive/etc.” side of the table — more than a few times already.
It’s okay — and perfectly natural — for you to just BE SAD right now. And disappointed, and a little shaken or traumatized by the experience. Fighting those feelings just because you feel obligated to engage in fun pregnancy banter with a friend is not going to help anyone. She’s probably waiting to follow your lead — she’ll bring up the pregnancy only if you ask, and right now I’m sure she’ll understand if you DON’T ASK. Because IT’S ONLY BEEN A WEEK.
(Coffee kicked in! And I continue to shriek ONE WEEK ONE WEEK ONE WEEK in all caps!)
She just found out the sex of her baby, which means she’s probably about 20 weeks or so? She’s only halfway through this; there is plenty of time for you to pull back from the pregnancy talk and put down the knitting and maybe just ask her to come over and watch Steel Magnolias with you while you sniffle on the couch and feel sorry for yourself while Sally Field chews on the scenery in the graveyard.
By allowing yourself to feel sad, you’ll greatly increase your chances of feeling better and more accepting later — maybe in time to help plan a baby shower, but maybe not, but I’m still sure she’ll understand. Again, even though this lost pregnancy was a surprise and not uber-wanted right off and even though there technically wasn’t ever an actual baby to lose (since it was molar), you are not mean or selfish or shitty by mourning the lost potential, the lost idea. You are human. So please. PLEASE. Give yourself permission to grieve. Your friend will still be there when you’re done. And chances are she probably wants to be there for you through the process right now, too.