My friend just announced her pregnancy; I’m happy for her, but sad for us. Here’s how I deal with the sadness and frustration of not getting pregnant.
We can’t have babies, and aren’t pursuing fertility treatments. I’m usually okay with my childless life – I’m all about Blossoming in all seasons of life, after all! But sometimes it hurts.
I’ve already written articles on living with infertility, such as How to be Happy When You Can’t Have Kids. This post will focus more on why I’m sad that my friend is pregnant, instead of my usual encouragement towards happiness and acceptance.
Nothing has changed in my life – yesterday, I was perfectly happy. But today I’m sad. I am really, really happy for my pregnant friend – she is so excited because they’ve been trying to get pregnant for a couple of years. But I sorta feel left out, I guess.
When Your Friends Are Pregnant
Resilience – bouncing back from disappointing news – is sometimes easier if we know the root of the problem. Maybe it’s as simple as wanting to be pregnant, and not getting what we want. Or maybe it’s more complicated than that (which I think it is for me).
If you’re sad because all your friends seem to be announcing their pregnancies and you’re the only one who isn’t pregnant, I want you to know that you’re not alone. Here’s what is making me sad…
Raising Hope (yes, the TV show)
Bruce and I have been watching back-to-back episodes of Raising Hope on Netflix. It’s hilarious and I love that show, but that baby is SO cute! It makes me want to have one, even though I know having a new baby can’t be that easy. It’s just that the family seems to gather round the baby, and there is so much more love, joy, and connection in the family.
Pregnant student at grad school
One of my fellow students (I’m getting my Master’s of Social Work at UBC) is pregnant, and her baby bump is obvious now. Again, I am very happy for her…but it makes me sad to see her.
The more pregnant friends I have – the more pregnant women I see – the sadder I get. It’s not necessarily because I want a baby. I’ve made peace with not having kids, and I love my life. I love the freedom, independence, and perks. It’s just that I can see the pros and cons of both having kids and not having kids – and so many parents say that kids are the best thing that ever happened to them.
I guess I feel like I’m missing out on an important aspect of life.
Support group for couples who can’t get pregnant
For my group therapy class, I wrote a 10 page paper that described an awesome idea for a support group for couples who can’t have children. For some reason, writing out what would happen in each week’s meeting made me sad, even though the sessions are meant to help us embrace life without children.
The reason I’m sad that my friend is pregnant has a lot to do with the focus of my life lately. It’s all babies or infertility. If I was surrounded by happy childless couples, then I probably wouldn’t be so bothered by the pregnant women in my midst.
How to Cope With the No-Baby Blues
A few quick tips for overcoming the sadness of having pregnant friends:
- Let yourself be sad. Today, I’ll gear down and take a “sad day.”
- Re-evaluate the aspects of your life that may need to change. I won’t drop out of grad school, but maybe I should focus my activities on couples and women who don’t have kids, and who don’t want to get pregnant.
- Be grateful for what you have, because you have more than you realize.
- Look at other ways to make life meaningful. I’m a Big Sister, and I love it! Recently, I’ve been thinking about starting or joining a support group for teens in foster care. I recently got the message that I should “Gather orphans” (from God)…maybe it’s time to figure out what that means to me.
Are you sad because a friend announced a pregnancy and you can’t conceive? Sometimes it helps to write it down. I know it helps me. Feel free to share your experience below.