How to handle being around pregnant women and babies?

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How to handle being around pregnant women and babies?

Postby annieg » Thu Oct 13, 2011 03:59 pm

I lost my baby in March of this year due to severe preeclampsia. I was 23+4 weeks pregnant, and and our little girl was too small to save. She lived for 4 1/2 hrs, and I am so incredibly grateful for our time with her. It's been 6 months, but the grief is still overwhelming some days.

What I'm having a hard time with right now is being around family members and friends who have healthy pregnancies and babies. My husband has a couple cousins who both had babies the month that our little girl was due. I am trying to be happy for them, but it is so difficult to be around them because it reminds me of my own sadnesses. At the same time though, I don't want people to walk on eggshells around me, and I HATE the looks of pity. Not only is our family and extended family full of little babies, but my sister just told me she was pregnant too! It feels like too much.

What is a good way to cope with this? How can you express how you are happy for someone, but explain how it's too hard to be around them? How do you stay strong but know when a situation will be too much? I feel so stuck!
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Re: How to handle being around pregnant women and babies?

Postby brandi101 » Thu Oct 13, 2011 04:21 pm

Before i found out i was pregnant again i found it hard to be around a good friend who was pregnant and my newest niece and being honest with them helped me tell them you are happy for them but your not ready to be apart of that right now you are still grieving and its ok to feel sad but always be honest when they want you to hold the baby tell them your not ready if your sister wants you to go to appts or shopping for baby stuff tell her your not ready dont rush yourself just for everyone else
Wife and mother
angel lou born 11/11/05 healthy and full term
kayleigh michelle stillborn angel 8/31/09 1 pd 6 oz 10 inces long
briedon silas born 7/9/10 healthy induced at 38 weeks heprin baby allergy to lovenox
we all miss our baby girl
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Re: How to handle being around pregnant women and babies?

Postby cmccaffrey » Thu Oct 13, 2011 07:39 pm

Unfortunately, I still deal with this and I am now 5 1/2 months pregnant myself. I try so hard to be positive, but as soon as I get far enough away from pregnant friends/ family members or people with babies I cry. I kind of have the fake it till you make it approach where, if I pretend I am happy enough for them eventually I will be. I don't know if this will ever work, but it's better than my alternative of NEVER surrounding myself with pregnant women or babies. I avoided my prenatal yoga class for the longest time because I just felt so weird being around all of these blissfully ignorant women. In some situations where I know the baby is the exact age our baby would be or something like that, I usually come up with some excuse to be engaged in something else. Sorry if that's not helpful really. Those are just some things that I have done.
Christa (25) & J (26)
Mommy to:
Mason born 10.11.10 @ 30+3 wks due to Severe Pre-E. Only lived 2.5 days
Noah born 2.1.12 @ 38 weeks thanks to lots of doctors visits, LDA, Lovenox and no preeclampsia!

learn more about our story... http://tinyurl.com/7a979vy
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Re: How to handle being around pregnant women and babies?

Postby m » Thu Oct 13, 2011 10:43 pm

I don't know if there is really a 'good' way to cope with it. It's one of those things that you just have to deal with the best way that you can. I had to avoid being around babies for a long time. If you feel that someone will be hurt by your absence at a special event, send them a note or an email beforehand to explain that you wish you could attend but that it is still difficult for you to be around babies/pregnant women. Don't let anyone pressure you into attending if you don't feel up to it. I wasn't able to be comfortable around babies until after my daughter was born, which was about a year after my son's death. I still find it somewhat bittersweet to hear that a friend or relative is pregnant. I think some of these feeling will always be around, but I saw a big improvement after my second pregnancy.
DS 2/5/09 - 2/13/09; severe PE at 28 weeks
DD March 2010; PIH, preterm labor at 36 weeks, 10 days NICU
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Re: How to handle being around pregnant women and babies?

Postby flori » Sat Oct 15, 2011 03:34 am

Hi Annie,

I also lost my daughter in March. She was born fighting at 25 weeks, but we lost her the next day. I had to have a c-section so I was out of it the night after she was born and didn't get to see her until the next morning. I wish with all my heart I could go back to that day because I would have demanded to stay in the NICU the entire night, if they would have let me. I only saw her thriving for a few minutes that morning, the next time I saw her we were saying goodbye.

I struggled a lot in the beginning with seeing pregnant women. I had to have my postpartum appointment with my MFM, whose office was on the OBGYN floor of the hospital. So three weeks after losing her, there we were, surrounded by happy blissful pregnant women and even harder to see- new mommies. My body ached when I heard the babies cry, it still does actually.

It's been 7 months for me, so it is a little easier. I work in retail so I see pregnant women all of the time. They don't bother me so much.. it's the new moms cuddling their little baby girls that pull at my heart. I want to tell them "I had a baby once".. but I bit my tongue and carry on.

As for advice, I would be honest with everyone (especially if it's family) and let them know how you're feeling. Share that you are very happy for them, but that you just don't feel ready to be around them. You may get a few insensitive comments from those who expect you to be over it, but don't let it bother you. You suffered a loss that not many have and you have every right to grieve however and for as long as you need.
Flori, 30
Mommy to Gracie- born at 25 weeks 03/15/11, 11 inches, 1.1lbs, and absolutely beautiful. Became my sweet angel the next day.
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