How do I tell my ___ , who has been dealing with infertility for years, that I am pregnant?
Fill in the blank with who that is. Sister. Best friend. Aunt. Niece. Whatever.
My answer is very simple.
- Firstly, it is helpful if you can talk to the person prior to finding out if you are pregnant. If it ever comes up in conversation prior to you knowing you are pregnant, ask them how they would want to be told.
- If you have not done this, the general rule is do not tell the person in person. A very nice card or email allows them to digest this news privately.
- If you are concerned that this may not be the right way for your loved one, consider sending the husband an email and asking him his opinion. Generally, while husbands are effected by infertility, the pregnancy announcements do not impact them the same way. The husband can either tell you how to tell his wife, or he can tell her himself.
- Remember that these announcements are a reminder. The woman feels as if she is being passed or even lapped. She wants to be a mom so bad, and she is jealous. These feelings often make her feel guilty for feeling that way, but she cannot control the emotions. She knows she should be happy for you, but her own pain trumps that emotion. Telling her via email or card allows her to react and prepare properly.
- If you wanted to make a public announcement, at a party or family function for example, and it would be inappropriate to leave this woman out of this group, send an email or card first and mention what you plan to do and that you want her to be prepared.
- If this woman is very close to you (like a sister) consider changing the way you would tell your family out of respect for her.
- Once the woman knows, if you need guidance, ask her. Ask her if she'd like to be left out of Facebook posts about your pregnancy. Invite her to your baby shower but send a note or tell her that you completely understand if she doesn't await to go.
- Remember that you don't have to completely understand why your loved one is impacted by this so much (those not dealing with infertility just cannot relate completely) to be kind.
Question? Comments? Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a comment on this post.