Thursday, May 22, 2014

How To Be Sensitive

Disclaimer: Today's post is a "thank you" to our friends/family that support us in every way possible in this valley of life (for example, one of my sweet friends from college who called me on Monday night), and a "please read this" for people who don't understand infertility struggles.

Everyone goes through trials and tribulations. And the truth is: I GET IT; I have a pretty great life. But it's not perfect, nor will it ever be.

I'm convinced that people in my life have a tough job. Because of our struggle to get pregnant, some (not all) of our friends and family suddenly don't know how to act around us, or how to talk to us about the anything related to pregnancy. And I don't say that in a negative way. How can I blame them? If they've never been through the experience, then how would they know how to act or what to say?

That being said, it's still very possible to learn how to be sensitive to couples struggling with infertility.
First and foremost, if you avoid talking about it or pretend that it doesn't exist, it actually makes things worse. It's not uncommon for my close friends and other people my age to announce that they're pregnant. It is nothing short of a true blessing. However, if you call me out of the blue to announce your pregnancy, be expected to somehow, someway let me know that you still love me despite our struggles, and that you know we'll be great parents one of these days. Of course, I want to be giddy with you over your growing miracle, but it's not fair to completely disregard my struggle as if it's insignificant. If the roles were reversed and you prayed daily to get pregnant, and then I called you saying, "we weren't even trying!" and I didn't say a single word to you about your struggles, how would that make you feel? I imagine it would put a knot in your throat.

My sweet friend from college... bless her sweet soul. She called me Monday and I immediately knew before answering. Within probably 5 minutes of being on the phone, I just broke down. No, it wasn't because I was jealous or mad at her - how could I be?! She, without a single doubt, will be an awesome mom. I am secretly predicting it will be a boy. But rather, I started crying because for the first time, someone actually acknowledged my feelings. That's a true friendship. She got straight to the point. "Allison, I kept wanting to call you, and then I'd hang up. I didn't know the right words to say, but I'm here for you... and I'm pregnant!"

Nailed it.

It may sound selfish on my part, but I can assure you that it's not selfishness to ask that my feelings be considered. It's called respect. People like her will forever be in my life, because in tough time they prove their worth. And she is priceless. And her wittle baby on the way is going to be spoiled with love and kisses by me... trust that.

Because this is getting a bit too lengthy, I'm just gonna add in one more point.

The second tip that I have when dealing with loved ones struggling with pregnancy: You don't have the slightest understanding of how difficult it can be, so rather than give advice, just be present, supportive, and loving.

I am absolutely not looking for advice when I'm in tears over our struggles; that's the very last thing I want. I am looking to be consoled and reminded that God knows my desires... and that this pain is only temporary. And that IN FACT, one of these days, I am gonna rock at being a momma.

Since husband & I are on the verge of starting the IUI process, I am filled with hope, but also want to be mindful of my other sisters who struggle with this topic. My philosophy? God only puts people through what he knows that they can handle. And good gracious, I am one strong woman.

10 comments:

  1. Thinking about you guys! If He brings you to it, He'll lead you through it.

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  2. FIRST - Your last sentence, you are ONE AMAZINGLY STRONG WOMAN! I've had friends that struggled but never said anything, and always felt so sad for them, because they didn't have anywhere to go. While I'm not the best listener out there, I am a good listener. One that gives silent hugs or cries with you because I'm so sad you are sad. I often don't know what to say, so I just say "I'm praying for you and God will deliver you through this tough time, in His way".

    Ever since you shared your struggle to get pregnant, I've randomly thought of you and other friends struggling to conceive. I know I don't know you, but please know that while some IRL friends don't know how to act or let you down, there are some blog friends praying for y'all and lifting you up. <3

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  3. People can really be so insensitive with words sometimes. I'm glad you posted this. :-)

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  4. Hugs and prayers. I hope you know I'm thinking of you!

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  5. You are such a rockstar, friend! Seriously. You are a strong, amazing woman and I know God is going to bless you a million times over!

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  6. Allison, you are such an amazing person! And you ARE a very strong woman!! I'm am praying for you and your hubby everyday that you will soon be blessed with a beautiful child. Trust in the Lord and he shall lead you both through this.

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  7. You are going to be one awesome mom. I remember when my ex and I struggled and he didn;t want to admit it and told me I didn;t need to see the doctor. It was so frustrating and helped lead to our demise. But, you are open, honest and so strong in your faith. I know God has big plans for you and I am so glad you are speaking up and out about this very real struggle. I pray for you often and will continue to as you embark upon IUI. Keep Calm and Pray On :)

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  8. Youre an amazing woman and your children will be so blessed to call you mom. God knows the prayers of our hearts. He hears you.
    This post hits the nail on the head - a great read for all of us.

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  9. ive been wanting to write a similar post for awhile and didn't know how to write it. Even though we're still in the early stages of everything, I still have some of the same feelings. I'm having a really hard time with my family - especially my mom and it's kind of starting to wear me down and I dont know how to say anything.
    I needed this post today to just let me know it's ok to feel how I do! So, thank you! And I continue to pray for you and hubby on this journey. You are going to be a great mommy. I know there are great plans for you and Ross!

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  10. I'm glad you posted this...I never knew how many women struggled with infertility until I started reading blogs the past couple of years. It really opened up my mind and I'm conscientious of being sensitive now. Thinking and praying for y'all!!! I know good things will come.
    p.s. I had lunch with Maddie (from a Tinge of Whimsy) yesterday and we both gushed about how much we love you and your bloggy blog. :)

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