How many of you have had awkward encounters with people regarding your infertility? Whether it's the "helpful" advice like "just relax", the clueless suggestions like "maybe you're not 'doing' it right" or the downright rude statements about "maybe God just doesn't want you to have children" anyone who has been trying to conceive for longer than 6 months is bound to have experienced one of these.
Sometimes the worst are the comments from people who have no idea that you are trying or how long you've been trying. As an overweight woman who happens to carry a larger percentage of her weight in her abdomen, I have had multiple encounters that go like this:
At a party:
I meet a few people, and while chatting with one new person--
Stranger: So, when are you due?
Me: Oh, I'm not pregnant, just fat.
Stranger: I'm so sorry! It's just your dress/you look like you are/I just thought
I have had many other variations, some a little more vague, but I think the worst is when someone starts with "Can I ask you something?" which is usually followed by a much more direct question "are you pregnant?" I think I hate these the most, because it is so obvious that they are unsure about whether or not I am, but disregard any instincts they might have about whether the question will hurt my feelings in favor of their burning curiosity.
As a young, single woman, these questions hurt mostly my self-esteem. As a married woman unable to conceive, it was like another stinging reminder of my failures.
One of my worst encounters was shortly after I discovered I was miscarrying. A very congenial man I met at the mailbox asked me if I was expecting. I very calmly said "not anymore." I was so angry before I encountered him, I had sworn to myself I would let the next person who asked that know how rude and insensitive it was, but he was so nice I couldn't bring myself to it.
If you have had encounters like these, and would like to contribute, follow the link to join the project. The author is also accepting submissions of stories for the book. The intention is to provide support to couples new to infertility as well as a guide for family and friends of what NOT to say to infertile couples.
I think it sounds great and can't wait for it to print.