I’m the first one out of my group of friends to get pregnant. Exciting? Yes. Scary? Yes. Lonely? Yes.
It is brand new territory for me! I don’t have anyone to look to, or compare notes, or even just whine about the sucky and awesome aspects of pregnancy (there are some, trust me!). When I found out I was pregnant, it took everything in me to control my baby-related thoughts in order not to hijack every single conversation and make it about my new situation. I would only talk about babies if someone asked me about it, and even then, I tried not to abuse the opportunity and get carried away.
Not having anyone to talk to is one thing, but thinking you had someone to talk to – but actually don’t, is even worse.
Early in the pregnancy, I realized that a few of my friends weren’t as excited about my pregnancy as I had anticipated. I was pretty hurt about it. Eventually, I talked to some of the women from my birth month group about it and it seems like this is a common occurrence, and a lot of them had it even worse off – some with their in-laws or even their own parents. At the end of the day, its relationships that drift apart at the nuance of a change in lifestyle. The only real way to deal with it is to either confront them, or just get over it and move on.
Whether you’re pregnant or not, friends should be supportive of you no matter what. They may disagree with you, have different outlooks, or flat out oppose to it, but the only thing that should come out of their mouths in that case is: “Whatever makes you happy.” Not everyone will agree on everything, but there’s no point making the other person feel bad about it.
Fortunately, they aren’t the only people I know and it turns out that I have many friends and family who ARE supportive, and have been there for me throughout my entire pregnancy so far. They’re amazing and I love knowing that they’re with me 100% of the way.
Now there are just some things that no one else will understand unless they’ve been pregnant before. And that’s where my online mommy groups have been my saving grace.
In the beginning, I joined a public forum, but I found that it was too impersonal, and not at all private. Anyone with an internet connection could have read what we were writing, which was a little freaky since we would share details about where we were from, what hospital we were choosing, our midwives and OBs – stuff like that. It also turns out that when people are anonymous and hidden behind a cutesy username, it’s easy for them to turn into catty betches, hijack the thread, and then what you thought would be an informative thread on midwives turns into a flaming stream of comments about why you should or shouldn’t circumcise your son. Yikes.
Luckily, after a few innocent posts were being wrongfully reported, a bunch of us got fed up and moved to a Facebook group for mommies due in April. I know the sudden influx of new people scared away some of the existing members, but right now we are 187 strong of amazing, funny, witty, and reallllly open mommies just waiting to pop out our new little ones! (and I mean open. “TMI” is essentially implied in about 95% of our posts.) The best part is – since we’re all due in April or at the very earliest, the last few days of March – we all end up going through the same symptoms, appointments, tests and growth spurts at the same time! THIS.IS.AMAZING. To have a slew of women going through and completely understanding exactly what is happening to you is invaluable. I can’t even begin to count how many times this group has helped me just “be” pregnant.
If you aren’t receiving the support and love that you need, go out and GET IT! You deserve to feel and be happy throughout your pregnancy, at every stage! You might be surprised at what you never knew you were missing.