Sunday, 5 December 2010

Welcome to my pity party.

Whine ahead. Feel free not to read if you want. I’m just letting it out.

In the January of 2006 I had a miscarriage at 8 weeks. Three weeks later the day of my follow up appointment at the doctors, my husband told me his niece was pregnant - due just a few weeks after I would have been. The feeling of despair post loss knowing I would have to watch her the whole pregnancy knowing it should have been me was just awful.

It became a little easier when I became pregnant again with Seamus the following June. But I admit I totally avoided her for that first few months because I just couldn’t handle it. She got offended because I stayed away and stopped speaking to me. Our relationship is still strained now.

Those of you that know me well will be aware I had a traumatic loss in July this past year at 21 weeks. My baby was due in November, and I was really hoping to be pregnant again by now however my body just isn’t co-operating and I am still even after five months awaiting my first period. It sucks.

This morning we get a big announcement that my husband’s niece is pregnant again, and she is due in July 2011. So yet again I get to watch her, and this time she is due around the time that we will be facing the first anniversary of Finn’s death. This is going to suck, and probably going to cause another big rift in the family as she, and no one else his side, is going to understand why I’m avoiding her like the plague. But what can I do.


  1. Perhaps you could try to lessen the attachment you feel to the dates of your pregnancy.

    It is a dramatic loss, that must be properly grieved for, but if you are always attaching yourself to every date that has any sort of reference to your lost pregnancy you will forever be "avoiding things like the plague".

    For example, if this woman was to get pregnant, start to show or have a due date anywhere from March to December, she would be imposing on your grief. That is a nine month period that spans 75% of the year - a nine month period in which everyone else is moving along, perhaps oblivious, to the pain you feel.

    If you can let go of the dates, and focussing your grief on those date, then you have moved to lessen your grief just a little bit. You will gain back 75% of your year without guilt.

  2. I agree with the previous commenter in that it is 9 months, which is most of the year. But I also feel like his niece should be more understanding. I got pregnant on my first try when my best friend had already been TTC for a year. She is still not pregnant and I have my son, and even though we hung out throughout it all, I always felt a bit awkward, guilty, and just AWARE of how unfair it was, even though we were open with each other about our feelings. As someone who has been pregnant, she should (easily) be able to relate and feel for you, otherwise something is wrong with her IMO.

  3. Lindsay, I wish it were really as simple as just letting go of it. Unfortunately, July 2 is always going to be my son's birthday, and for me to somehow let go of that, is going to take a long time. Probably years if ever.

    I disagree that it would be the same if she was due at a different time. I have a work colleague who is pregnant right now and although if I'm honest, all pregnant women and small babies are triggerish for me at the moment, she doesn't give me the same punch in the stomach feeling. And I have to see her every day, while my husband's niece I do not.

    I've been there too Janine, when I became pregnant with my second son a friend at work has recently had a miscarriage and she and I were on a team together. I took her aside and told her before I told anyone else. I didn't want her to find out from someone else and wanted her to realise I knew it might be difficult for her but that I cared and understood.

    I do think that if you have never undergone a pregnancy loss it can be hard to truly empathise with someone that has not. The feelings are often not rational, but they are nonetheless real, and painful.

  4. It certainly will be difficult! I'm sorry you are having to face such familial complexity.

    I truly feel that there is no way your feelings will change, but what you could do is make the antagonist more aware. Perhaps if you sat down with your neice one on one and let her understand where you are coming from she might be more apt to lay off certain comments or be more gentle about other things.

    While I haven't lost a child before, I can relate to the relentless feeling of disappointment when TTC while other's around you seem to just smell their mate and get pregnant.

    Whilst leaving the fertility clinic after our first appointment, my close friend called to tell me she was pregnant. I was less than excited for sure. We didn't speak for a while, but she did come to me and take the time to get me to talk. While during the conversation I was really tense, annoyed and sorrowful - it ultimately allowed us to have a better relationship. I won't sugar coat and say the same relationship - but it was better.

    So, I guess I'm just saying express yourself. No one can truly understand what you are feeling if you don't tell them. And perhaps you can think of things to ask her to avoid doing to lessen your pain and things to ask her not to expect of you.

    The dates will be difficult. But you will get stronger and time will more away of experiences learned from horrific events.