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Thread: BW's rules for the family who wants to be supportive

  1. #19

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    Thank you, Sara.

    I'm so glad that this is helping others to know what to do or say... but I really don't think of myself as brave at all. Just doing what I've got to do...

    BW

    Last edited by butterfly_warrior; November 11th, 2007 at 06:54 PM. Reason: removing the h. Sorry, Sara!

  2. #20

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    good on you BW. I hop eyou get the chance to communicate this to your family and that they won't react badly. Don't forget though, that THEY are in charge of their own reactions and that if they do react badly ITS NOT YOUR FAULT.

  3. #21

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    Thou shalt NOT under any circumstances call to enquire about the result at the conclusion of a cycle. If we tell you about the cycle, we'll also tell you about the result, when we are good and ready, and not a moment before. There's enough pressure from ourselves without having to feel like we have let you down also if we get a negative result. There's enough disappointment between the two of us without adding yours on top.
    Yes, i second this. In our last cycle we got a negative, and also found out that I hadn't ovulated and it had grown into a cyst... I didn't tell our friends, I was too upset about it, only Shel (obviously) and my sis and SIL knew. A friend has now got the sh*ts because she found out a week later, instead of at the very moment we found out. Not only am I upset because I got a BFN and a painful cyst, but I have to repeat it over and over again. Surely she can see how that is painful!?!?!?!?! Well, apparently not.

    I'd also like to add another ... same friend actually....

    - Thou shalt NOT, EVER, ask as soon as you see me "do you feel pregnant yet?" or anything along those lines... I'll tell you if I do... Sometimes that reminder that I'm on the TWW is something I don't need, especially since when I do venture out and be social, its usually to take my mind of the wait!!

  4. #22

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    Hi BW
    It sounds like writing it was really helpful and cathartic for you. I reckon it feels *so* good to get it out of your head and onto paper. You're very witty and funny, and I'm pretty sure your family/ILs wouldn't have a clue about that, would they now?
    I hope that you can find a way - whether through editing or whatever you need to do to feel comfortable - to be able to give this to your family/DH's family. Perhaps you can attach it as is with a note of explanation: what brought you to writing them etc.
    Who knows? I hope that you can find a way to help your family to wake up a bit, even though it shouldn't be up to you to do that, and it's not your fault they're behaving as they are.
    Miss C

  5. #23

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    BW, I have to say that I think you have done a fantastic job with your rules. I think anyone who got offended is probably a very hard person to please anyway. Most of us are unsure how to address issues we do not have experience with, and I for one am always grateful for assistance with this. I think you should publish your rules so anyone can give them to their family and friends. I hope that you find a way to give them to your family.

  6. #24

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    BW loving the rules they are excellent
    Hows about
    " thou shalt not say "at least you know you can get pregnant" after a mc or ep!
    and " maybe if you really wanted a baby it might happen" after a 3rd failed IUI.( beacuse if you dont shout it from the mountain tops who cares)
    i think you covered this one but upon telling MIL of impeding mc she said "oh thats no good, your SIL just had to give up breastfeeding" (WHHHATTTT THAAAA)

  7. #25

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    Oh i love this thread!! I agree with every single one of the rules! Especially the when you relax it will happen one... arghhh!

    I do have 2 more to add:

    Thou shall NOT say insensitive things like.... you knew it probably wouldn't work... you had to expect it not to work...when you hear the news of a failed cycle. A hug would do much better!

    And lastly this really annoys me i am 23 and have been TTC for 3 years and this one peeves me to the max.

    Thou shall not say... well you are young it will happen..... or be patient you have another 20 years left to try and have a baby, just support our decision and love us.

    ok enough of my vent! I love these rules!!

  8. #26

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    Hi BW,

    Great list!

    Ok - going to be a negative Nancy - I just remember what my in-laws were like when we tried to explain via email how to treat us around about this time last year.

    Unfortunately they took it completely the wrong way and thought we were resigning from the family (we just wanted to back out of a Christmas gathering, which they wouldn't let us do despite our explanations).

    I suppose what I am saying is that despite your best intentions, people can react in ways that you can't predict at the time. And it can be messy. Particularly at this end of the year when emotions are running high.

    Then again, if it's a choice between that and emotional pain, I'd still take messy!

    Good luck with it BW!
    Last edited by Caramello; November 12th, 2007 at 05:09 PM. Reason: Thought of something else...

  9. #27

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    I can see your point, Gargy.

    Problem is that this time of year is probably the hardest for family stresses, and also one of the hardest for dealing with infertility... but it also makes it one of the hardest times for the family to hear "you haven't been doing it right!".

    Perhaps it might just be easier to opt out of all family gatherings this Christmas. Let my family believe we're spending it with DH's family, and let DH's family believe we are spending it with my family... and then, when things are a little less crazy and emotions aren't running so high, send them the information.

    A similar topic came up on the fertility friend forums today, there's been some beautiful stuff posted there that I really do want to copy across at some stage.

    Was it really that funny? I thought of it all as being very sarcastic and cynical, certainly not witty at all. Perhaps that might actually help it in being accepted by the family...

    BW

  10. #28

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    Fantastic thread, BW.

    I have had the longing for a baby, but thankfully no trouble conceiving once DH came on board, but I would add a rule from my life and from talking to a friend (who tells me over coffee "you know Sarah X? She just had a miscarriage." Why does she tell me that? And what should my reaction be when Sarah mentions it herself 4 months later?).

    If you do insist on treating my fertility as gossip, at least try to retain some manners and my illusion of dignity by telling your friends they aren't supposed to know.

  11. #29

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    Phew! I came on to double check that I hadn't offended you.

    The double cross of families is an excellent idea - wish I'd thought of something like it last year when all hell broke loose!

    Yes it was funny - but then again the majority of us understand where you are coming from.

    Ryn - excellent addition too. I have this particular person at work that almost feeds on the knowledge of what is going on with me. These days I cut any discussions about having children to a bare minimum. Anyway, most of my discussions these days are about houses - can't wait until I don't have to discuss that anymore!

  12. #30

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    BW, sometimes just getting the emotions down on paper is the best thing to do. I too found them witty especially the later ones and can certainly relate to the pharmacy on top of the fridge. But I think with family there is a lot more feelings involved the girls here understand because so many are going through the same/similar problems/feelings and as you say yourself no-one in the family has experienced anything like this themselves. I think they don't know how to handle it and find it confronting, then do what they think is best. I think they will be very hurt, because they just won't/can't understand, but at the same time they can't continue to hurt you. It is a hard one, but you are a very smart thoughtful cookie and I don't think you will just throw it out there. I wish you the best of luck at this tough time of year. Don't get me wrong, I am not sticking up for them(family and friends), I am trying to think of the repercussions and I am sure there would be lots whatever you decide.

  13. #31

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    Gargy,

    I think you and I are on the same page, but not because I don't agree with everything BW has written down, but because I know my family, have lived through the unpleasantness of them over my numerous cycles, and I know exactly how they would react. Not all families will be anxious to do the right thing, and after 8 cycles, I'm pretty sure my family just wanted me to stop IVF, or shut up about it, and for me to go back to the way I was before I started. It's taken them a long time to figure out (but not accept, mind you) that I am now changed forever. I will never be the person I was before I started.

  14. #32

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    I think you are spot on, Sushee. This is the core of the issue. I think many families have a lot of problems with accepting us as we are. They (meaning parents, mostly) often cannot let go of controlling us as we grew into adults and they wanted us to turn out a particular way, made assumptions about what would happen in our lives. And as we pursue the AC path, we are changed forever, hence parents lose even more control and find it even more difficult to accept who we are. Everyone is always fighting for control in some manner. Control = comfort. And comfort is what families want. Comfort that their children are ok and are the people they "brought them up" to be. AC is not comfortable. We often are not ok. It makes families uncomfortable, and without realising they try to hang on to that comfort for all their dear life and it results in the needs of their children going through AC being neglected and/or ignored, intentionally or not. This is my thoughts based on my own family. Trying to be clinical about it, but it's family, so it's emotional.

  15. #33

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    As a mum of teenagers, I can relate to wanting to steer your children away from hurt and pain and I know that IVF eventually became the big white elephant in the room that my parents' didn't know how to deal with except to insist we excise it from our lives. So in that respect, miss_c I couldn't agree with you more. I craved their understanding that to stop would be infinitely more painful than continuing, but sometimes their view of it from the outside can be simplistic. It's not easy to see what it's like unless you live through it. I still feel the hurt when I think about those times, but I have tried to move on and rebuild my relationship with them. My DH, on the other hand, finds it hard to forgive them even now, as he saw how they affected me back then, and made my journey all the more difficult for it.

  16. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by miss_c View Post
    I think many families have a lot of problems with accepting us as we are. They (meaning parents, mostly) often cannot let go of controlling us as we grew into adults and they wanted us to turn out a particular way, made assumptions about what would happen in our lives.
    Amen to that. I still have trouble getting my parents to realise I'm not the person I was when they gave up on me any more, for one thing I'm 20 years older!

  17. #35

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    BW, this thread is absolutely brilliant & it reflects alot of what I am beginning to wish. While it is nice to have someone to speak to or vent to (other than DH), it needs to be at my say so, not whenever someone asks. Thanks for making "the rules"!

  18. #36
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    Default Thread Converted to Sticky

    It has been suggested that this thread be converted to a sticky thread so that old and new members alike can share in the problems that are faced by some people in regard to the relationship between IVF and their family and friends.

    Butterfly Warrior has permitted it to be made a sticky thread. Please continue to contribute to the thread.

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