Our Journey

2002 Uterine Fibroid Surgery #1

2003 1st consult with an RE, you know, just in case

2003 Got Married (at 37 (me) & 34 (DH) years old)

2003/2004 Naturally conceived pregnancies BFPs #1, #2, & #3 and miscarriages #1, #2, #3

2005 Uterine Fibroid Surgery #2

2005 IVF #1, BFN #1

2005 IUIs #1 and #2, just because, BFN #2 & #3

2005 FET from IVF #1, BFN #4

2006 Exploratory surgery to remove scar tissue from fibroid sugery #2

2006 IVF #2 (w PGD), BFP #4

2006 Emergency cerclage for IC @ 16w6d (5 months + 1 week of complete bed rest at home ensues)

2007 Our son is born @ 38w by scheduled c-section

2007 IVF #3 for baby #2, BFN #5

2007 IVF #4, BFP #5, miscarriage #4

2008 IVF #5, BFP #6, miscarriage #5

2008 IVF #6, BFP #7, miscarriage #6

2008 DE IVF #7, BFN #6

2009 DEFET #8, cancelled, embryos don't thaw

2010 Decide to adopt domestically

12.17.10 Profile is live with our agency

November 2011 Consult with RE re: donated embryo cycle

Early January 2012 Cleared to proceed with deFET

January 2012 Freeze our profile

1.20.12 deFET begins
2.12.12 eSET of one compacted morula
2.22.12 BFN

3.23.12 deFET #2 begins
4.14.12 transfer 3 embryos (1-8 cell, 1-5 cell, 1-4 cell)
4.22.12 + HPT
4.24.12 Beta #1 = 48.4
4.26.12 Beta #2 = 125.7
4.30.12 Beta #3 = 777.8
5.11.12 1st U/S - Singleton!
7.12.12 It's a Boy!
12.26.12 C-section: Baby G is born, 9#5oz, 20.5"

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WWYD #1?

It is going to be a long 10 days waiting for ultrasound.  It is highly likely that I’ll find myself going in for another beta before then.  These early days are so tenuous with very little physical reassurance that the pregnancy is continuing and while I am trying (trying, trying) to remain neutral with my self talk, it is hard.  So, while I know that there is nothing I can do to affect the outcome between now and the ultrasound, it is consuming wondering what is going on in there.

I need some advice regarding how to handle an issue that’s come up with a friendship.  I’ve been grappling with what to do for weeks and during that time have been pulling way back from my friend.  I have mentioned her before here and let’s call her K.  We met when our children both attended the same preschool and we were active together, serving on the same committees, during the year that we were both there.  I’ve known her for just over two years.  Her son is one year older than my son and her daughter is in the same grade although she attended a different school.

I took a liking to her because she was similar to me in many ways.  She was direct, a hard worker, funny in a sarcastic way, bright, and we shared many of the same opinions about the school our sons attended and how we wanted to see improvements.  She is also a stay at home mom, one of very few that I know that attended the school we went to and the school we’re going to now.

In the beginning of our friendship, we did do some things with our kids and when they were in school we’d occasionally run errands or grab a coffee.  I found out that she had her two children through DE, so we immediately connected on the infertility front.   It was  apparent that our children where on opposite end of the personality spectrum, with hers being painfully shy, introverted, and sensitive, and mine being gregarious, demonstrative, and out-going.  I noticed the oil and waterness of the situation, but figured it’d work itself out over time.

Meanwhile, she was very supportive and helpful when we decided to switch schools and then again when we moved.  She is the person who helped me create the look of mid-century modern home we have now from the traditional home we were leaving.  We saw a lot of each other but I noticed that our kids saw less of each other.  We did do joint swimming lessons last summer which seemed to work out well, but play dates all but stopped.  I also noticed how consumed with what others had or what they made or what her husband made she was.  I could tell, by virtue of the relationships she pursued with specific families at the school, that she was a social climber.  I also noticed that she never invited me to go out socially either alone or with other moms and this after I’d been so inclusive with her.

She knew we were pursuing donated embryos and was one of the few IRL friends who was privy to our first cycle.  I thought that since she had been through her own ART process that she’d just let me tell her what I wanted to tell her when I wanted to tell her.  But, the converse was true and she was texting, emailing, or stopping me at school daily to get the details of the cycle’s progress.  I knew then that if that cycle failed that I would not even share that I was cycling again with her.

At some point, she sensed that I was pulling away, and we were out with our kids having breakfast which was a rare occurrence.  Our kids hadn’t been together in maybe six months.  When she inquired about what was going on, I said that I didn’t feel that she wanted to be friends with me, that our children weren’t hanging out and she and I weren’t hanging out socially, so what was there?  She seemed genuinely taken aback and felt badly that I felt that way.  And then, by way of defense, she said, “But, you know, and I don’t know how to say this, but part of the reason we’ve not not gotten together with you and H is that because, well, my kids really didn’t want to be around him.”  An entire conversation ensued where she talked about how sensitive they were compared to his rambunctious nature and that maybe she should have been stronger with them or required them to work it out with my son and I shared my experience of being a kid and we just had to get along with my parents friend’s kids, period.  It just wasn’t an option not to, that we didn’t have a say.  However, since breakfast we’ve not gotten together.

It was only in the weeks after that breakfast a couple of months ago, that I realized how hurtful what she said was and how I didn’t want to be friends with someone, another mother, who would make me feel bad about my son.  And, from a distance, I watched how K operated with other mothers (not only the play dates she was having and talking about, but the social functions, dinners, etc that she was recounting that I hadn’t been included in).  It all just validated what I’d been feeling all along which is that we were not destined to be good friends.  But the rub is that I have been a great friend to her, supporting her during a recent crisis in her marriage and her recent move and we do have kids at the same school and it’s likely that her daughter and my son will be in the same kindergarten class next year.  All of our recent exchanges have been about her (they moved just around the corner from us) and I never shared that I was cycling.

Now, she wants to get together, to hear about what is going on with me.  Her text last night specifically asked if I’d started meds, yet, and asked me to come over one morning this week to ‘fill me in on you’.  I am feeling so fragile with this pregnancy, that the last thing I want to to do is reveal that I cycled much less that I am pregnant.  But, the bigger issue is that for us to move forward with even a cursory ‘mothers with kids at the same school’ type friendship, I feel like I have to clear the air.  But, I would generally only do that if I thought it would deepen a friendship that I wanted to invest in and this isn’t one of those.  I can’t just sweep it under the carpet and proceed in a disingenuous way but we do run in the same parental circle so it’s not like I can’t be friendly with her.

Maybe I am being petty in holding this grudge, but I am fiercely protective of my son and anyone who would say a negative word to me about him.  I think of how polite he is every time he sees her and how earnest he is when he asks if he can get together with her kids and how she sort of puts him off with a “we’ll see, honey” response.  I just don’t know how to approach this in a way that gets off my chest how I am feeling while keeping this friendship at arms length (and I have no idea how I am going to tell her that I already cycled and am pregnant).  I guess at the crux, I have been a better friend to her than she has been to me, so all of this is going to come as a great surprise to her.

I put her off until next week (and my plan is to try to put her off another week, until after my first ultrasound), but I’m not sure how successful I’ll be.

So, what would you do if someone you’d once spent a lot of time with and shared details of your life with says something hurtful to you and behaves in a hurtful way and you need to maintain a friendly relationship without actually being friends because your kids are at the same school and you live in the same neighborhood and share many of the same friends?

“Be courteous to all, but intimate with few, and let those few be well tried before you give them your confidence.”
~George Washington

16 comments to WWYD #1?

  • […] responsible for our selection of elementary school for our older son. I wrote about it most notably here. Things were never resolved and I categorized our relationship as friendly without being friends. […]

  • […] other news, after all this time, I am set to meet my friend K this morning.  There have been significant developments in her life (she is now “in […]

  • […] to a mom’s night with some of the preschool moms at my son’s school.  Interestingly, K did not invite me but another mom did.  When K found out that I’d be there, the texting […]

  • […] taking your advice, I have not confronted or otherwise dealt with the situation with K. Things have gotten beyond awkward but I think she is too intimidated by me to confront me. […]

  • […] Thank you for the replies to WWYD.  As I predicted and because she believes we are better friends than we are, she is pressing me to […]

  • PS Further evidence of your differing styles and her lack of perceptiveness … she was trying to support your last cycle in a way that made sense ~to her~ but was intrusive to you and she totally failed to pick up on your cues (did you try to explain it to her?). When she finally learns about your pregnancy, if she wants to know why you didn’t share, you can explain that while you appreciate people’s interest in your IF journey, you were so stressed out that reporting out to people about progress did not ~feel~ supportive TO YOU. Maybe this will give her a gentle clue that she’s been missing some things about your style/where you are at. It’s probably too much to hope for, but you never know.

  • JMO now that you are clear (if you are clear?) that you are not interested in a significant friendship with this person, COMFORT should be your goal. Yours. And Hers. Everything else is … distraction?

    It’s revealing that she’s still making attempts to ‘groom’ you, but you seem very clear about where you stand on the relationship. This is one part communication problem, one part face-saving/diplomacy problem.

    As far as explanations for your son goes, the easiest thing to do is to blame yourself. Explain that you and the other mom are not as good friends as you used to be and therefore you will not be socializing with her or the kids the way you have in the past. Gory details not required — especially since kids have poor filters (!) and are at risk for blurting socially awkward truths out in public … and esp since your son will be seeing a lot of her and her dd in future.

    If you want to take it further with him, you could illustrate the situation with an example from his own social life/social circles of another child with whom, like you, he is simply not destined to have a close relationship. You can explain that some people go well together and some don’t. You can give a silly example like … ketchup doesn’t go well with ice cream (yuck!) … but hot fudge and whipped cream sure do. Likewise, ketchup and fries are a match made in heaven. None of these foods are bad in and of themselves; they are just ‘happier’ in the right crowd. If you think he can follow you, you could even introduce the concept of introvert vs. extrovert … get him to see if he can tell which type applies to people he knows (with your help). You can mention this woman’s children as examples of the introverted type. That way if your son sees the dd next year, he won’t be so confused if she isn’t overly eager to hang out with him at school …

    I’d probably add a cautionary note about the concept of Live & Let Live. In other words, not taking the neutral fact of incompatible personalities ~so personally~ that you are tempted to be ~mean~ to people who aren’t ~just like you.~ This is a REALLY helpful concept for kids to digest once they get into full time school. One we all wish the parents of bullies and mean girls would teach their children early. Bonus: Your son will see you modeling this when you bump into your ex-BFF …

    The heavy damage that I’ve seen in my dd’s world is the fallout that happens when people grow apart or move on … and then some girls feel the need to destroy the people that reject them/are obviously different personality-wise/unintentionally threaten their personal insecurities. Modeling how to be graceful in these situation is a good thing, even if it doesn’t sink in consciously (the opposite behavior surely would).

    I can tell you are hurt and maybe angry about your friend’s behavior … BTDT. Totally feel it. That said, you’ve realized that you and this woman are not deeply compatible … and she just hasn’t caught up yet. And no wonder, because it sounds like she is looking for something completely different out of her relationships than you are: Superficial relationships don’t bother her. From her perspective, nothing is wrong with this picture. It’s classic isn’t it? That mindset/those values are utterly alien to you (and me), but it’s a fact: there are a shit-ton of people in the world just like her.

    Personally, I’d just keep putting her off — super cheerfully — and as others have said, take care of yourself as the absolute priority. I wouldn’t sweat coming clean with her about anything … remember that’s something YOU value, but it’s not necessarily something she will understand. Note: when she explained that her kids don’t enjoy your son’s company, she was being honest, but all that did was offend you. KWIM? NTM rejection makes people nutty. Sticking a finger in her eye over this (real or perceived, intentional or not) might feel like “honesty” to you, but … it’s not going to change her behavior or teach her a lesson/inspire growth (unless she’s ready for that –doubts) … and it’s going to make future interactions a PIA for both of you. You will cringe everytime you see her. BTDT …

    There is one mom whose daughter socially manhandled mine … and that wound gets poked every time I accidentally lock eyes with her at school functions. It’s BEYOND annoying. If you can avoid this situation coming to that … JMO … it’s worth a bit of orchestration. I’d say, let her down easy, gradually, mercifully (if only because you still have to interact with her). Take stock of what you learned about yourself from this situation. Wish her well in your head. And if she’s confused or frustrated by your pulling back … well … that’s not your problem. It sounds like you two are not going to be of much use to one another … beyond … ideally … ~cheerful~ acquaintance status. If you do this gradually enough … maybe she will get busy with other people … and she might just let this go lightly herself. If not, her reactions are out of your control anyway. You can’t help it if you are ice cream and she is ketchup. :) Fingers crossed.

  • Mel

    I don’t think you want to shut the door, but you want to put her in the proper room of your house, if you know what I mean. She’s a nice living room friend, meaning, there’s a little holding her at arm’s length needed. She isn’t a kick back in the informal family room friend. And not everyone needs to be. It sucks when you can see all the ways you should be connecting, at least on paper. But you can’t disregard the facts — the kids don’t mesh which makes it difficult to dump everyone together. She doesn’t always have your back in the way you need someone to have your back to feel emotionally safe. So no need to make big friendship changes, but once you’ve defined where she is in your mental house, treat her like anyone else who would be in that room. You wouldn’t talk about the pregnancy yet with the principal, let’s say. So treat her like anyone else you’d entertain in a formal living room.

  • That’s a tough one… but I agree with holding back too. You and your bub are the priority right now… you don’t need the added stress and trying to work out whether she’s being genuine or not. Look after yourself and give it time xoxo

  • Yep, with the others. You need to be safe in your own space. However you have to put her off, do so.

    When I was very early in my pg with Lucky, I was known for telling people “no news yet” even though we were waiting for the u/s. Text her back and say “nothing to report. Will let you know if there is news” maybe? Or put her off, claiming being busy or something.

    xoxo

  • Anna

    I think that everybody here has this one right, you need to protect yourself and work to keep yourself out of harms way if at all possible. So I’m for the delaying, holding back everything and just doing what is comfortable for now. Not telling someone about your treatments or early pregnancy is totally acceptable in my book, I didn’t tell for as long as I could and like you say, I would never expect somebody else to provide details, as K has been doing. I think your instinct is to put this off and I would go with that. If you have to bump into her that’s something else but genuinely, you are busy, looking after yourself, being pregnant. I think George Washington is right and would agree, K is currently in ‘be courteous’ land.x

  • Sue

    Tough situation, but if it isn’t really gnawing at you, I think waiting for a few Weeks might be helpful. You really don’t need extra stress. This will be hard, because you need to remain cordial, and that might be hard to do if you want to get it off of your chest. Conflicting goals to some degree. You may find just delaying will help create distance and make things more acquaintance like in communications vs bff. Sucks that she was a mean girl about H though, that just wasn’t cool. Shane on her for not being the kind of friend you have been to her. Sorry you have to deal with this.

  • I would give yourself a free pass to suddenly just be a little ‘too busy’ to get together right now — and reapproach this, say, after your ultrasound. Once things are feeling a little safer for you in your own pregnant-space so you have more mental room to handle this friend and figure out where you want things to go.

    I admire you for still seeing the good in this gal, and wanting to make a friendship work. I think if another mom had said something like that about my son I would’ve been devastated and just wanted to run away. Yet, at the same time, I DO think it’s good when people are truly honest and are willing to bring up that are not going well — I hate surface-level fake-smiley friendships where I can’t be myself. So maybe there is still more to discuss with what she said. Maybe it wasn’t meant to be as hurtful as it came across.

    Not sure any of this makes sense, but I can definitely appreciate the emotions this is bringing up. I think, also, I would feel odd to happen to make a new friend with the ART in common and realize we’re not automatically BFFs forever, and that they are capable of being un-cool and hurting me. Like how could that be? I thought me and all IFers out there had this cozy sisterhood?

    Anyway, wishing you peace with this! I have had some very confusing experiences with ‘mom friendships’ so far, and it has been fairly disappointing sometimes. I definitely find myself just giving up a lot on people rather than trying to create something that maybe could be good.

  • I don’t mean that H is trivial, far from it, but she is trivializing your relationship and H’s importance by doing and saying what she is.

  • Hi! I am on the computer so may be able to give more than a two line answer.
    It sounds like K is currently interested in you for what she can get out of hearing your cycle story and what comes beyond. And Lite Friendship.Maybe she has put you in a box that says “good for IVF talk,chit chat and helping me in a crisis, but not good enough for daily stuff”. That’s what it sounds like to me. Not meaning to be too blunt or anything. I hate people like that.
    And I am mad with her on your behalf. I hate friends that compartmentalize me like that. Maybe I am projecting….
    Anyway, she has put the blame on your lovely H, which means that she has let something trivial put the kaibosh on your friendship. I would never be comfortable being friends with someone who didn’t like Isobel and would cite her as the blame for our lack of contact.
    I agree that you are in a fragile place right now and that it might be worth putting it on hold if you can stand to do that. If you feel you must get it off your chest and deal with it, then I don’t know how easy it is going to be to let her know your feelings AND keep a friendly distant acquaintanceship, but maybe it’s possible. One thing is for sure, she is not acting like a friend and I really feel for you. I have had similar disappointments and feel like i go out of my way for people and to be friendly and supportive, to have it rarely reciprocated. I know it’s easy to say, hell, she is not a friend of yours so dump her, but that doesn’t acknowledge the hurt you feel and the investment that you made in her, which she obviously did not reciprocate. Or stopped reciprocating at some point.
    Please accept a distant but very close friend hug from a big supporter of you. It’s funny, I think we are likely different in some significant ways in real life,( I am not very organized and not very forthright) but I think we share many of the same values, and that definitely extends to honesty and fair play in friendship. And the need to connect with people who really get it. I hope that you can find some others that value friendship the way you do. Big hugs, my friend! xoxo

  • I wrote you a long comment and then deleted it. The bottom line is: you’re fragile and under enormous amounts of stress and it doesn’t sound as though you’re up for additional confrontation right now. Can you just text to K that you’re not in a good place and need some space from her? It doesn’t resolve anything – that could wait until later (or not) – but it might save you the energy of actively avoiding her. Or would that kick off a confrontation of it’s own? Sorry this relationship isn’t helping you get to where you want to be. Hope you have good sources of support to draw strength from.

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