Fertility Network UK
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Any Coping Tips - very welcome!

As I think is the case for a number of ladies on here, I am surrounded SURROUNDED by pregnant friends, new born babies and young children. My best friend has just given birth to her second child, my sister in law is pregnant with her second child (due imminently), my other sister in law has just given birth, my other friends are trying for their second babies and a close colleague has just also had a baby. I am genuinely excited and happy for them and, at the moment, am not having to feign smiles. In fact, I’ve surprised myself at how attached I’ve become to all of the babies - I absolutely adore them.

In quiet times, when it’s just me and my husband or when I’m alone, it does get really difficult. It seems so unfair. We’ve not told anyone about our difficulties in conceiving, which so far I think is a good thing - I don’t want all of the pregnant or new mums to feel awkward around us.

I don’t think anyone suspects that we’re having difficulties as we didn’t tell anyone we were trying and we’ve only been married for 10 and a half months. We’re also quite young 28 and 30).

I am though finding the hard times very hard. And my unflappable husband is now, I think, also starting to struggle. This is not helped by his socially awkward family who make comments to us like: “Aren’t you a bit behind all of your friends re babies?” Etc. As I say, I genuinely don’t think they have any idea that we’re struggling; I think they are wondering why we haven’t started trying.

My other sister in law also asked if I don’t feel weird given that all of my friends have children - as she sits there smuggly with her new born.

But regardless of our situation, which is unknown to them, in what circumstances is it ever acceptable to make such personal and intrusive comments? Somehow, I manage to respond really politely and not show emotion but when I’m back at home with my husband, I’m devastated.

What does one do in that situation? How can I protect me and my husband from these comments? I’ve already started avoiding certain people which I know is not the right approach and is probably a very slippery slope.

If anyone has any tried and tested tips they would be really gratefully received.

Many thanks ladies xx

19 Replies
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Just say god no all my friends are stuck in putting baby’s abed at 7pm looking like a bag of shite with bag under their eyes I’m off out with the hubby enjoying life. Then add kids are evil Lol just for fun.

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Funny that! I was talking to a colleague today who had less than a year between getting married and having first baby. She asked me how long I'd been married and I said 6 years and she said she was jealous of us as she now has to wait for quite a few years before herself and her husband can go on holiday alone together. Apparently they never had the opportunity before. There's good and bad to every situation I suppose.....

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Oh yes them were the days lol Young and carefree. My kids are 12 & 10 so theyre getting up now, but Im 4 weeks pregnant so were going back to baby which will be new and exciting for us and them. Big decision to start again im 38 but my partner doesnt have kids and wants one. I really do feel for people who are finding it hard to conceive it is the worst we thought it would'nt happen for us too we had a mc last year and its really hard seeing baby baby baby all the time its so emotional.

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Hi I completely understand what you are going through, all my friends and colleagues getting pregnant and having babies etc.

I think the only way you can get people off your back is by actually telling your friends and family what you're going through. I know that you may want to keep it private which is completely understandable as well, but when I finally opened up to those around me about my fertility problems I felt like a huge load had been lifted off my shoulders, and I no longer dreaded going to family get togethers and being asked the usual questions of "when are you two going to have a baby?" etc.

I realized after that it was the comments and simply knowing that people were thinking it that got me down the most a lot of the time. Now I feel so much better.

If you're not completely against telling at least your close family and friends about it then I recommend you doing so. You'll feel a lot better, trust me! xx

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Wow - I feel like this could be written about our situation too and really feel similar pain. We are a lot older me 37 OH 38.

We have also not told friends and family. This has been because I wanted to concentrate on our emotions and not have to be taking anyone elses feelings into consideration.

I recently posted about my sister in law pregnant again for her 2nd and basically all of my friends gradually announcing 'round 2' babies. So can totally understand.

So....how do I cope?! Haha normally I am fine. Sometimes it gets too much and I have a good cry - but not often.

I have really been disciplined too and avoid negative people that ask me awkward questions - I know this seems like I am avoiding the issue, but a lot of these people were not great friends anyway. I now make time for good friends that are positive and do things that do not revolve around alcohol as I cannot drink during treatment. And of course spending nice time as a couple.

I do things that make me happy too! Cooking and day trips...simple things!

Once you get your positive everything could change for you in an instant.

Try to keep positive I know it is hard.

I am trying to not think about it 24/7 too in between treatments. Just to give my mind a break.

Best of Luck!

Xxx

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Just realised how much of a sad old granny that post makes me sound! 😅😅😅

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No, it’s lovely. Thank you for your advice xx

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It is very difficult and it amazes me how thoughtless some people are I wonder if you just made a comment such as we are really hoping this will happen for us soon just to one or two people if it will be a little easier it is very personal tho maybe when faced with bumps and babies say secretly to yourself that will be me one day and keep the hope alive I hope your turn comes soon x

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Yes that’s a very good way to think of it xxx

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I’ve found honesty tends to shut people up. You don’t need to share every detail or bare your soul, just say that you are trying & it really isn’t that straight forward for many people. You know that it is likely just casual curiosity or a conversation topic for them, but that it is a very sensitive and intensely personal topic for lots of couples who have struggled. While it may not be a problem for you to talk about it, it can be devastating for another woman who is in a different head space.

Honestly, one of my friends was really taken aback because she never thought about it in that way. She is a wonderful person & I know that she will think twice before asking the question to anyone else. She hadn’t intended to upset me (I don’t think that’s ever the aim here) but just hadn’t considered that anyone might find things so tough.

I hope things work out for you - you are still young & I’m sure you’ll make your little miracle happen, one way or another xx

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Thank you xxx

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Ours is a male factor issue so I don’t think surrogacy would be appropriate. Thanks though.

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I totally understand where you're coming from, and I think the fact that you love these babies is amazing, I haven't been able to go near a baby for the last 2 and a bit years, I've just avoided them as much as possible. It's so, So hard, I've distanced myself from so many friends but when I've been ready I've made an appearance, normally when they're not pregnant and when the baby has got bigger. I've had to start telling people because I've not acted how I'd normally act and people have directly asked if they'd done something wrong, which upset me so much, that I'd made people think that. I've sent presents through the post so they know I'm thinking of them, and days when I'm feeling better about things I message and ask how they're doing. My advice would be to tell people who you feel comfortable telling, it really helps and, after all, it's nothing to be ashamed of and don't be hard on yourself, it's natural you feel the way you do and you're not alone. Xxx

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Thank you for the lovely advice xx

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Sorry I have no words to offer but I just want to say that I'm in the same situation. Even if I avoid those who are pregnant/have babies, a lot of people ask awkward questions like when we are going to start our family...I keep telling myself that one day it's gonna be me but it gets harder as the days go by. I have tried telling some of my friends but it's not like that babies are going to disappear so personally I have not found that so helpful either. Anyway I think it's personal whether you choose to disclose. Otherwise I cry sometimes to let out my emotions. I'm sorry I don't really have much to say!

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I hope things get easier for you. Sending lots of love xx

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I know exactly how you feel.

I came off social media which was a lot easier than I thought & I don't miss it one bit!

Then I set up a whatsapp group with all my girlfriends & explained what I had been going through in the last few years & if they could refrain from sending me any scan / bump / baby pics & 99% of them have been so lovely & incredibly supportive. I have lost one friend who has the "perfect" life do she can't understand, its a shame but I'm choosing to surround myself with positive friends so that's just how it is.

So many people are just so uneducated about infertility that they just assume you can fall pregnant like "everyone else" so I chose to just tell people. The more I tried to keep quiet the more angry & distant I was becoming.

I've also said that I don't just want to talk about our journey either - I'm happy to answer questions from friends & family but it doesn't define me & them I change the subject to something else ;-)

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I feel for you I really do. Been there and it is so hard. Putting on a brave face is hard but try your best and vent/let out emotions at home. I was in a similar situation before I had my first. I just used to smile and say “oh we’re perfectly fine as we are” but I was pushed one day to say to one particular girl at work who kept making comments and remarks like “oh come on you’ll be next, don’t keep us waiting much longer” and all this, I just snapped and said “it’s not that easy for everyone is it” and that soon shut her up! Nothing else was ever said. No more questions asked and it actually felt like a weight lifted. Without going into detail it took the pressure off completely.

I am similarly going through it again with trying to have number 2. All my friends and everyone I met through have my first is now having their second and this is now rearing its head again. The comments “don’t you want a bro or sis for them” and “you don’t want a big gap” again feel like screaming “it’s not that easy and not through choice is it...” but trying to keep calm.

It is so hard and cruel. Take the good days as a positive and go completely with bad days. Let them happen.

XxxxxX

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Thank you so much. I hope things get easier and go smoothly for you this time xxx

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