My experience with pregnancy which came after infertility and loss differed greatly from my friends who conceived easily and greeted those nine months with wonder and excitement. While they gleefully announced that their babies were now the size of a kidney bean, I was holding off on buying maternity clothes just in case the worst happened... mostly because I was accustomed with having the worst happen when it came to those years of trying to conceive.@x13">
Going through that pregnancy with my twins, who were conceived with the help of fertility treatments, made me realize -- especially as I hid my very large pregnant belly under a winter coat well into my fifth month because I was too scared to talk about the babies -- that pregnancy after infertility and loss is different enough to warrant its own Crib Sheet, a cheat sheet that you can print out and carry around as you worry through the next nine months and beyond. This Crib Sheet will tell you:
- How to get through the worry you may be feeling now that you're pregnant after infertility or loss.
- The difference between prenatal screenings and diagnostic tests.
- When you should start spreading the news that you're expecting to family and friends.
- That planning for the baby can be a stress reducer.
- About postpartum depression and its unique tie to pregnancy after infertility and loss.
- How to find other parents who are in a similar situation so you can lean on each other for support.
- How to talk about assisted conception with your children or with other parents.
Melissa Ford is the author of the infertility book, Navigating the Land of If (Seal Press, 2009) as well as a novel, Life from Scratch (Bell Bridge, 2010).
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