I have been sitting on this post for a few weeks with me working through depression and the anxiety of my upcoming appointment but a conversation came up that made me get back to it. A recent post I wrote about a few weeks ago about friendships impacted by infertility led me to getting together with that group of friends two weeks ago. I felt I needed to not let my infertility get in the way of great friendships that have meant a lot to me.
Going into the weekend I thought I could handle being in the presence of my two friends that are dad’s, my friend who will become a dad in the next few months and his pregnant wife. I thought I could handle them bringing up topics concerning their kids and getting ready to become a parent. But I was wrong. I’m not that strong at least not at this point if I’ll ever be.
There were only 2-3 points that weekend when these topics came up. Yet each time it came up it got me thinking how I will never be able to have their experiences because of my body. I felt I had nothing to contribute to those conversations because of my body. All the deep dark feelings I’ve been feeling came up as I sat there in silence or playing with my phone.
In case one of those friend’s reads this, please don’t apologize for anything you said. You don’t have anything to apologize for and neither do our two other friends. The reality is this has nothing to do with you and everything to do with the shitty hand I was dealt and how it’s brought up feelings of having little self worth.
I don’t think it’s fair for any of these friends to avoid these topics around me as it is a big part of their lives. I feel like I would be denying them their happiness and sharing of their life. I feel like they’d be walking on egg shells around me. I would feel like I am a burden being around them.
As much as it sucks unless my situation changes I don’t think I can hang out with them much anymore. Our lives are very different today and we have very little in common. That’s not anyone’s fault either it’s just what has happened in our lives.
I know there are those who feel people with children should be more sensitive and empathetic. I agree they can be but at the same time there is only so much they can do. They can be empathetic (my friends definitely are empathetic) but at the same time they can’t pretend they or their wives aren’t pregnant. They can’t pretend that their children make up almost their whole life. Asking them to avoid talking about these topics around us is unfair to them.
This is one of those situations where I don’t know if there is an easy answer and its different for each person. For me the answer is to communicate how I feel without lashing out at others recognizing my hurt has nothing to do with them. I also recognize that for me I just don’t fit in with people who have children. It’s too tough for me and I don’t want it to all be about me. That’s not a friendship to me. It’s best for me to distance myself from those social situations. I know it sucks but it is what it is. And it has nothing to do with them and everything to do with me.