Breaking your pregnancy news to a friend with infertility
You’re pregnant and excited to share the news, but your good friend who is suffering from infertility — while she may be happy for you — is likely to be sad, too.
Confiding your pregnancy to your friend shouldn’t be stressful, but you should keep a few things in mind when you share.
Your pregnancy test is positive, but you’re worried about how to tell your good friend you’re expecting a baby. Why? Because she suffers from infertility and you’re worried about how the news will make her feel. You’re a good friend to be concerned about the feelings of others, although she does need to hear the news — and she needs to hear it from you first.
Even though you may be worried about her reaction, moms who have been on both sides of this issue advise that you do not wait to tell her. Niki, mother of one, had an experience like that, and it caused hurt feelings. “I had no idea she was pregnant until one day I went to see her and she had a baby bump,” she told us. “That really hurt me.”
Heather, who is having trouble conceiving, agrees that waiting or withholding the pregnancy info is not the way to go. “It would make me very sad if a loved one withheld information because they thought I would resent them,” she explained.
Consider a text
Telling your friend remotely — either through a text message or via email — can have many benefits. For starters, you won’t be catching her off guard face-to-face, which would require her to try to manage her rush of emotions in person. “I told our friend who has had a harder and longer struggle with infertility than us through text message when I found out we were expecting,” explained Tiffany, mom of one. “I don't think I could have told her face-to-face.” A text message will allow her to process the news privately, and to respond when she’s ready.
Try a phone call
Sarah, who is expecting her third child, has a sister-in-law who suffers from infertility. She said that her sister-in-law is always happy for them when they announce a pregnancy, but she knows that deep down, it really hurts her. She makes sure to phone her and tell her as soon as she’s ready so she doesn’t have a chance to find out indirectly — even though she knows that it’s hard for her family member to hear. “I am completely sympathetic and understanding of this, and try to console or let her vent,” she shared.
If you know that your friend will be attending an event where you plan to reveal your pregnancy as a surprise, make sure that you tell her first. In addition to being emotionally unprepared, she may find the large audience unsuitable, and she won’t necessarily have a plan in place to deal with emotions if she is overcome.
Most who struggle with infertility are truly happy when friends and family get good news, but it can still be hurtful to receive it. It’s important for you to be happy and excited for your pregnancy, but it’s also good to keep your friend’s feelings in mind when you share.