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Fertility Network UK
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Disturbing present from a friend - Needing some sympathy

Dear lovely ladies,

I am feeling down and puzzled and fed up too. Yesterday a 'friend' who knows my hubby and I have been struggling with IVF and fertility for a long time has given us, as a Christmas present, a 2019 calendar of her and her 2 children and husband, lots of pictures for every month. My husband and I love her children but she also know, or should know by now, that one of the hardest things for me in this IVF hourney is to know that my husband would like children and we have not been able to have any. Generally I would think giving a calendar of yourself to others (unless it is family) is already a bit on the weird side of things... but in our situation I think it is really tactless. Unfortunately it is in line with her general attitude toward people, which is to not really listen but to give her opinion and tell them what to do without having really first listened. I would not choose her as a friend and it is more the circumstances that make it such that we hang out with them (morethan I wanted). Plus she keeps asking us out and I already have to make excuses quite often, as each time after hanging out with her I feel down, as she keeps talking about herself and I find it impossible to have a mutual conversation. But my husband is keener to go out with them mainly because of the children. 🙁 Sigh. Sorry I needed to let this off as I cannot talk about it with anyone else and this bloody tacky calendar in the house really bothers me now, I have just put it on top of the recycling bin, maybe my hubby gets the message. Quite childish of me I recognize, but I am both hurt and angry.

Anyway... apologies for the steam. I hope Christmas and the New Year will bring some peace to all of you and, if not, strength and support when you most need them ! 🥂💕xxx

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Sending huge hugs to you, people really don't think and certainly don't understand no matter how much they tell you they do.

I certainly can't blame you for putting this on top of recycling bin, as I wouldn't want something like that in my face.

My sister in law sent a Christmas card designed by one of their daughters , and it " accidentally " hasn't made it onto the walk, but that is so minor to what you have recived.

Can you treat yourself to a new calender in the sales ? Or do they come to your house?

I hope you manage to enjoy Christmas.

Xx

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Wow, it is amazing to have this list, I cannot believe how many people like you already reply with supportive answers, they help hugely I am very moved 🌹. Sorry to hear about your card though, hm. Good to have other cards from friends though... thanks for the advice btw. Well we do not really need a calendar, we have one already for us, yes they come to our house but... I do not care, my husband can keep it in his study if he wants to. We talked and he understands now how I feel about it, he had no idea. Anyway I wish you the very best for your journey and these days, and thank you again for your support, it means a lot 🌷🌷

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Glad to hear you've had a chat with your hubby and he understands 😊. I think sometimes me are a bit oblivious and you have to spell it out to them, but they get there in the end.

Awww well if you already have a calender then perfect excuse to put it in hubbys study if he wants it 😉.

I hope you have a lovely Christmas and 2019 makes all your dreams come true xx

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Wow, that is incredibly weird and insensitive (and narcissistic - why would anyone think someone other than their parents/grandparents would want a calendar of themselves?!).

You are not being childish at all, I would have put it straight in the bin. Sounds like you’re going through what a lot of us are... fertility issues really flag up all the negative energy in our lives and show us all the people that zap our energy! Ask yourself do you really want this woman in your life, at all! If your husband wants to see her/her kids, he can go on his own. Why put yourself through that. You have the prefect reason, self care in your fertility journey.

She does not sound like a good friend, it doesn’t matter if that’s just how she is and is like that with everyone, that’s no excuse. Xx

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Thanks so much for your understanding, it makes me feel much better already. No, I don't want her in my life but she is also a close colleague and maybe considers us family (hence the calendar, I guess??). She often invites us over and is a better friend with my husband, if I could I would stay much more at a distance, already doing my best... oh well, thanks for giving me your perspective and understanding, it really really helps 🌹 all the best for these days to you!! Xx

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Im so sorry you feel that way... I had a family friend woth two kids sending me her baby's bed as it was too big for him and hubby took it in the car and left it in out old flat there till we need it...

Man sometimes don't really get it... Just talk to him and tell him how you feel ❤ Sending you lots of hugs and wishing you your dream to come true in the new 2019 ❤xxxx

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Thanks for you reply.. sorry to hear about you story.. hm, I hope you talked to your hubby and he understood. I did talk to mine and it came as a surprise to him but he undertands me now. Well.. a very happy Christmas to you and may 2019 bring you lots of good things, and a special one too 😘

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Oh yes i did tell him. Same like yours he was surprised but now is much more careful and understanding.

Happy holidays and wishing you only good things and a special one for you as well 😍😍🥂xx

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That's a weird present. Totally agree that only parents/grandparents would want something like this. Its particularly insensitive given your IVF journey too.

I would definitely bin it and her too. One thing this journey shows is who you need in your life and those you can do without. Share how you feel with your husband though x x x

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Yes you are soo right!!👍 Thanks for you support... 🌷 I talked to my hubby now, he did not know how i felt about the calendar but now he does, and is very understanding thank goodness. I feel much better after talking to him and receiving all these supportive messages... thank you so much again 💕I hope you will have a very good Xmas and beyond...

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So pleased you've shared how you're feeling with hubby. Have a great Christmas too 😘

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I’m actually speechless that people can even think of preparing a calendar of themselves and gave it to any friend, especially if the friend is struggling with fertility. I think this gift is only acceptable for the grandparents - maybe! We got Xmas card from our friends with the picture of their baby and they knew that we have fertility problems. People are very insensitive and I’m sorry that this is happening to you. I wish you all the strength. Xxx

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Ah you too have been the target of baby picture gifts... sorry to hear that. It is puzzling how little people seem to understand. And as you say, it leaves you speechless. I am glad there is this list though... thank you so much for your reply, getting my strength back again 😘 wishing you the best for these days and beyond!! Xx

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Hi

Can completely understand how you feel and although I usually advise that we give people benefit of the doubt it does seem she is quite narcissistic and thinks more about herself than others

With that in mind- don't take it personally

She wasn't trying to make you feel bad shes just so used to getting her own way and being centre of attention

Do you not have any other friends with children to hang out with if that's the only reason your husband wants to stay in touch with them ??

Lol put an advertisement in the newspaper for a new friend (!) 🤣

On a serious note though - now that your husband is aware how you feel suggest that you back off your friendship with them slowly and make other friends you can both get on with x

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Thanks!! 🌷 Yes, you are right her not meaning badly, of course. It is the narcissism and tactlessness that bother me hugely. Unfortunately it will not be that easy to let her go, she is a real 🦑. And my hubby is too attached to the children. I will not ask him to move away, but now know that I need to keep more distance even, and will keep the conversation going with hubby. Unfortunately for other reasons too we are closest to their children than any others, ouf. Anyway... time to try moving away from this low mood... Thank you so much for your support and understanding it means a lot!! ⚘🌻🌼 have a great Xmas xx

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Lol yeah that’s weird sending a calendar with photos of you and your family to friends but you what I bet your not the only one she gave one too. You should send a framed picture of you and your hubby back as your gift. My sister always makes a calendar for our parents with the grandkids anything else is just weird why would you want them and their kids on your wall 😂

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Love that, a frame pic 😂

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Yes you are right, why would I want them on my wall? I really don't. Funny idea about sending them a pic of us. Actually, I do not think she would understand the hidden meaning... she might like it, perhaps. There are lots of pictures in her house, although, hmm, of themselves mainly I think. It's weird... the mere thought of giving one of my friends a calendar of me and my husband's pictures makes me shiver... it would feel so inappropriate, even leaving out the whole IVF thing!! Anyway, thanks for your support, and sorry for my belated replay, I thought I had replied already!! Lots of best wishes! xxx

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Definitely get it out of your house. Your house. Your rules. You must not be made to feel uncomfortable in your own home. Chuck it and don’t think about it again is my advice. I’m so sorry she is so thoughtless. Sending you a big squeeze. xxx

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You are right, it bothers me also if my husband keeps it in his office. It makes me want to puke actually, it got me down again. Argh. Thanks so much!! ⚘⚘xx

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No probs. I don’t put up anything that makes me feel uncomfortable in my home. My home is my sanctuary and I make no apologies for keeping it so. I believe everyone should do the same. Life is hard enough without having a safe place. Keep your home as stress free as possible I say. Be strong in looking after yourself in your own home. If they ask where it is, just say I’m looking forward to the day I can have pictures of my own children on the wall. Until then, I like to keep those spaces free for my dreams. I can picture our future in photographs. I doubt she’ll challenge you on it. x

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That’s a rubbish and ego centric present to give to anyone outside your immediate family, especially someone struggling with infertility. Definitely don’t have it up in the house- accidentally spill a cup of tea on it if necessary!

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🤭 good one, I will try... thany you so much for your understanding ⚘⚘ xxx

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That is such a strange gift indeed!! You are not being childish at all! I agree with Arya10 sometime you need to just think of yourselves, especially if it’s mostly through a situation you find yourselves friendly! Good luck, sending big hugs xx

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Thank you thank you thank you, sorry I do not have words anymore for all this support I am receiving, I am quite moved. Big hugs back and may your wishes come true in 2019 ⚘💕

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You’re definitely not alone and the insensitivity really astounds me. My friend knows I’m in the 2ww and feeling like it’s not worked. Her response? Send me photos and videos of her 1 yr old. I know she means well but I just responded with silence. I cannot be dealing with the emotional heartbreak of my own potential infertility and be expected to “aww” and “bless”, espiecially at the children of those who know what I’m going through.

It’s not childish of you at all. Put yourself first in these circumstances :)

Merry Christmas!

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Oh dear so sorry for you.. why does it have to be that way? Such a delicate time for you, I hope you get over that quickly and gently... and that you have more understanding people around you. ⚘⚘ Big hug and lots of good wishes, and thanks for your support. xx

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Hi,

Maybe time to let go of that “friend”... The last thing you need when going through IVF is to surround yourself with people who are so self-centered they forget about your struggles and rub it in. Who sends that sort of gift to anyone anyway??

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Yes, who does?? Well some do! And she often comments on how social media are making feel others inadequate by posting all those pictures of themselves online... 😤 Thanks for the support (rubbing it in is the right word, you nailed it!) and may you have a peaceful and lucky Xmas and New Year ⚘⚘

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Sorry to be blunt, but I would throw it in the bin! Tell her that it was on your kitchen worktop and you tipped a cup of coffee over it if she ever asks. Stay strong! Merry Christmas x

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Yes thank you!! I might actually do some real spilling, you gave me some ideas 😉. Thank you for your understanding, it is good to know that I am not the only one finding this inappropriate... wishing you the best for these days and the new year ⚘⚘ xxx

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What a weird present to give someone other than grandparents etc and extremely insensitive in your situation. I agree with 2018hopeful, I imagine knowing it's in your house will bother you so bin it, make up an excuse or be honest if your friend asks and in 2019 surround yourself with people who make you feel good or understand when you don't.x

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Yes I will. Kind, understanding friends are to be cherished, they are precious. I hope I can also be understanding, and not make such inappropriate moves like this 'friend' of mine. It is quite surprising how clueless people can be, I hope I am better than that. Anyway thank you so much for your understanding, it means a lot ⚘⚘🍾🥂xxx

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Hi, my advice:bin the calendar and bin the bitch! I wouldn't want another women's photo being hanged on the wall in my own house not to mention my husband's office! She sounds like trouble, avoid !!!

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Ahahah 🤭 well if my husband were interested in her I certainly wouldn't want him as a husband. I understand why you are saying that though, thank you for your concern! I am not worried in that respect, but it is her wanting to enter our life so insistently that I will have to resist. She is like that with others, and at work too, she needs to know everything of everyone and control everyone. She is very successful but not at all my style or role model. Thank you for you concern and support, it really means a lot to me to feel others understand my response ⚘⚘ I wish you the very best for these days and the new year, may your dreams come true xxx

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Sorry you've had to endure this! I'm just gonna say it...throw it out! I think this is massively weird and hugely insensitive, even if she does think of you as close friends....its not normal far less knowing what you have been through and still going through! She sounds like a self centred twat, I had a "friend" like this and I've managed to avoid her for around a year now after how She has treated me whilst I've been dealing with infertility! She sounds like your friend, talks at you, doesn't ask you any questions etc. I'm just annoyed I didn't see it sooner! Big hugs.xx

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Ah Cinderella I am sorry to hear you had an insensitive friend too. Thing is, I have seen this in her for a long time, I just cannot get rid of her! I will have to avoid contact for a while but she will keep asking us out (as she will not interpret silence as having anything to do with her) so perhaps I will just have to tell her. But whatever the outcome, my sensations are now fully validated, I will not trust her again, trust-breaking point has been reached! Cheers to true friends, may they always be there for us and us for them. 🥂 May the New Year bring lots of good things to you, thank you again so much for you support ⚘⚘ xxx

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First, why would she think that you would want a calendar like that in your home. Unless it was of my family, it would certainly go in the bin (very full of herself to think you would want it ). Secondly, you really have to protect your mental health. Tell your hubby how you feel about how you feel and if you need time out away from them , then so be it. Your feelings are the most important and you need to not feel this dread every time you think you are going to have contact with her. This journey is so hard, painful and emotional so see today as a new day. You are the main person here, do what you think is right and stick to it #yourfeelingsfirst xxxx

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Thank you! Actually I now remember she gave us a similar calendar a few years ago, at the time I was not going through IVF, but I still did not like it, it felt like an intrusion, why should she assume I want to see her and her family every day for a whole year? It's actually quite cringing. Glad to see I am not the only one who thinks so. Thank you for your understanding! Best wishes xxx 🌷

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Hope you are feeling better about things now xxxx

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Yes thanks much better! :-)

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Leave it at the bin that’s what I would do! What a weird thing to give you. Xx

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Thank you for your sympathy! 🤗⛄xxx

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hi VannaGio

I totally understand, she doesn't understand what we infertility fighters go through, I wouldn't take it personally, I would think because I love her kids she gave me this.

Believe me, while going through this brutal journey, we get too much sensitive when my sister in law gave birth to my beautiful niece people stared at me with pity. I couldn't stand their presence but sometimes I found it funny and I understood that they don't understand us except us.

So, I would prefer a friend like yours giving me her kids photos rather than a friend avoids me because I would hurt her kids with the devil eye. 👀

I hope in the future you will give her something similar to hers. Good luck and be strong. X

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Thanks... all the best to you and happy 2019. xx

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