Please Don’t Be Afraid of Me

As I have navigated through 4+ years of believing for babies, more often than not I feel like the elephant in the room. I have had the awkward moments at an outing where a pregnancy announcement is made and I can feel everyone glare at me to make sure I am okay. I have had friends who have been over half way through their pregnancy before telling me. I have time after time received the call saying, “I don’t know how to tell you this.”

I hate that other people are uncomfortable around me or hide from me. While I think a lot of friends make these actions to protect me, I am tired of being treated differently or feeling like others are afraid of me. Is it because they don’t know what to say? Or they don’t know how to act? Or maybe they aren’t sure how I will react?

Here is the thing. I don’t bite. I am not going to hurt anyone. I don’t have some contagious disease. I am not dying. If a person gets near me, they won’t all of a sudden have a hard time conceiving. I promise, there is no need to be afraid of me.

I would love to be treated just like every one else. I would loved to not be looked at different. I would love for people to treat their own pregnancies around me the same as they would with their other friends. I would love it if I hadn’t lost so many friends along the way.

I love babies and I love my friends, so I want to be around both without any awkwardness. I love to celebrate new life including newborns and each birthday that follows. I want to see my friends’ children grow up. And when my friends are having a hard day, or their baby is fussy, or they are exhausted and need to talk, I want to be a part of all that too. 

I want all these things. I want to share the ups and downs of my life, just as I hope others would want to do with me. Most of all, I don’t want others to be afraid of me. I want to them to love me, encourage me, and support me. And in turn, I hope I can do the same, regardless what stage of life they are in. I hope others can look beyond what I am going through and love me for me. I promise, there is nothing to be afraid of.

Please Don't Be Afraid of Me

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  • Kristy
    Posted at 06:33h, 19 August Reply

    Yes! I didn’t share our difficulty for a long time because I was afraid of the response. I love this post and I thank you for sharing your heart.

  • Rebecca Jo
    Posted at 09:01h, 19 August Reply

    Girl… I get it.
    Just try to remember people care & love you & dont want you to hurt… so remember that side of it when people are a little awkward

  • Ginny
    Posted at 09:15h, 19 August Reply

    This is exactly what I have wanted to say but haven’t been able to articulate. Thank you for your willingness to share.

  • Anna
    Posted at 09:38h, 19 August Reply

    So great you feel this way!! Unfortunately so many struggling with infertility DO want to be treated differently. I’m with you! We are strong, mighty, loving women, and we don’t need to be delicately coddled!

  • Brittany
    Posted at 09:55h, 19 August Reply

    Thank you for being so open and honest! I always love reading your encouraging words! When I got pregnant unexpectedly a few years ago – telling my friends that were struggling with infertility was in my mind the hardest. I felt like every one of those friends would be a much better parent and I wondered why God picked me and not them. I told the majority of friends all around the same time and it turns out the ones facing infertility I think were the most excited for me and the most interested in my feelings and my preparation to be a mom.

  • Jaclyn
    Posted at 10:24h, 19 August Reply

    I’ve lost friends throughout the years, too but I think it’s just because life goes in so many different ways all at once. Don’t let yourself think that you’ve lost friends because you’re still not pregnant or in my case, I’m still not married. Yes, those may be minor factors, such as not having play dates or date nights, but honestly, I have a hard time keeping up with just my schedule so I just move on in life and focus on the opportunities and friends I have at this stage in life. Yes, being out of the “loop” is isolating and even boring at times, but this is where God has me and I need to make the most out of it. I always promised myself I would continue to keep up with my single friends when I got married and as I’ve gotten older I’ve realized how hard it is for my married, Mommy friends to keep up with just their families so I have a lot more understanding about keeping in touch with people. Plus, at this point, I don’t have a lot of single friends, so honestly, it’s one less thing I have to worry about when I do get married. Not that it’s a burden, it’s just hard keeping up with friendships when you’re at different stages in life.

  • Belinda
    Posted at 12:17h, 19 August Reply

    Great post, Caroline! I feel the same way.

    Unfortunately, I’m not sure how our super close friends couldn’t be afraid of hurting us with their good news. I’ve often been grateful I’m the one going through this and not some of my besties. Because I’m not sure how I could handle seeing them hurt as much as I do. (I think that’s written in a very confusing way, but you probably know what I mean 🙂 )

  • Sarah
    Posted at 12:23h, 19 August Reply

    I recently came across your blog. Your openness and vulnerability are refreshing. You are on a hard journey. I respect and admire your faith to continue to believe you will one day receive the gift of a child. I can’t imagine anyone looking down on you or criticizing you for placing your faith in God to give you that gift, but I guess it does happen. But you do need to realize that you are in a different place than many of your friends who are parents and just like they can’t relate to your infertility and decision not to pursue treatment, you can’t relate to their fussy babies and exhaustion and fears of being a mother. You are not going to be the first person they call for support when they have been up all night with a crying baby even though they may be your best friend.

    And when my friends are having a hard day, or their baby is fussy, or they are exhausted and need to talk, I want to be a part of all that too.

    You might just need to come to the realization that you can’t be. Not because they don’t care about you or want to include you, but simply because you can’t relate and understand. Community and friendships are often built around ‘like” experiences, especially when it comes to raising our children. Your friends with kids want to spend time and be around other families with kids. They want their kids to be friends, camp together, go to school together etc.

    As your friends kids get older this will occur more often. My best friends are people that have kids the same age as mine. Our kids could play together while we deepened our friendships. My kids are grown and in college but those women are still my best friends because we were in the trenches of child rearing together. We shared the joys and sorrows of motherhood.

    I am adding you to my prayer list. I am praying that God gives you the desires of your heart very, very soon.

    But I also am praying that you can look beyond yourself and see that your friends not including you in certain things is not all about you and your situation. I might just be about them and where they are at in life.

  • Neely Moldovan
    Posted at 13:09h, 19 August Reply

    YES YES YES! This was the hardest for me too. I felt like people didn’t want to share things with me. Even now they still aren’t 🙁

  • Kay
    Posted at 21:04h, 19 August Reply

    This is a great post! My sister went through a miscarriage, and she had some difficulties with her pregnancies resulting in her having to do a very radical surgery to save her twins when she found out she was pregnant. She’s mentioned that people have always been very awkward when they mention having a good pregnancy, and how they want to walk on eggshells around her. I can’t imagine having to deal with that loss, and I can’t imagine having to deal with this situation as well!

  • Tara
    Posted at 23:07h, 19 August Reply

    Such a sweet and sad post at the same time. You have such a kind heart!

  • Megan Elford
    Posted at 07:36h, 20 August Reply

    I feel your heart, and I want to say thank you for putting yourself in a place of celebration with others when you may not want to. I had a really bad experience sharing our first pregnancy with a close friend who struggled with infertility. We planned our announcement carefully with consideration for her and her husband’s feelings, but it still went south. I’m wondering if others have had a similar experience with announcing their pregnancy and perhaps that’s why they seem to be overly cautious?

  • Heather Lawrence
    Posted at 10:19h, 20 August Reply

    My heart just breaks reading this, I know exactly how you feel. We suffered with secondary infertility then had two back to back losses so I can relate. I wish there was something I could say that would help but I am praying. That your support base would be filled with many who will love you, encourage you and journey with you and your husband. ((hugs))

  • Mihaela Echols
    Posted at 11:00h, 20 August Reply

    Wow great post sounds like you are very secure in your identity in Christ.

  • Amber
    Posted at 11:08h, 20 August Reply

    This is a hard part of infertility, isn’t it? On the one hand, you wish you could just keep infertility to yourself and be able to participate in the social events like every other person. But on the other, you know that authentic relationships require truth and honesty and sometimes that going to be awkward when lived out. I agree with you, I don’t want anyone walking on eggshells around me. I want to participate and celebrate special events just like every other person. It’s thoughtful that they are concerned about hurting me, but I’d much rather just focus on walking through life together – even when that hurts sometimes.

  • Sarah Jane
    Posted at 11:43h, 20 August Reply

    This is VERY important to read. We are told to rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep.

  • Lauren
    Posted at 12:22h, 20 August Reply

    I have this problem with my froth my friend who has a little boy with autism. I’m always worried I’m going to say the wrong thing. with

  • Cassie
    Posted at 08:24h, 21 August Reply

    This breaks my heart. When I found out I was pregnant I was so heartbroken that I would have to tell my friends who are experiencing infertility. I knew they would be happy for me, but I also knew that it could sting a tad. When we had our miscarriage, I felt like I jumped to the other side. Now people are scared to talk to me about their pregnancy symptoms or their newborns and it leaves me feeling so awful. Thanks for sharing this, friend.

  • Tiffany
    Posted at 10:52h, 21 August Reply

    I totally get it Caroline. I think people just worry about you and want all the happiness for you. Sometimes they just don’t know how to show it.

  • Meg
    Posted at 12:10h, 21 August Reply

    I totally get this! We had to recently talk to my SIL asking her to keep us involved in our new niece’s life. I can’t blame her for trying to “help” but her help in the long run would essentially cut us out of our niece’s life and that wouldn’t be helpful. Thank you for posting so openly and bravely. It is much appreciated.

  • Joce
    Posted at 19:49h, 21 August Reply

    Catherine I feel for you but your faith is amazing!Try eating a half of a avocado everyday.It is a fertility booster.

  • Tiffani
    Posted at 20:04h, 21 August Reply

    OMG this is so true and needed to be said. I have always made note of how I feel with things like this happen to me to make certain I NEVER do this to those that may be going through the same thing one day.

  • Lo | All That Motivates
    Posted at 00:57h, 22 August Reply

    I feel like so many women have been trying to find the right words to say this. And you said it for them. Perfectly. Keep sharing and encouraging! I know you are touching people’s lives.

  • Amanda
    Posted at 12:42h, 22 August Reply

    I am truly sorry you have been made to feel like this and that you have lost friends along the way. It’s sad because I think you’re right that the heart behind it is trying to be sensitive, but it ends up putting a gap between you. We have a guy friend who is single in his mid-thirties, and we still invite him to hang out with our couple friends and go out to lunch with him just the three of us (Jordan, me, and our friend). I don’t want him to feel sad because he isn’t in a relationship, but I don’t want to treat him differently because of it, and I still want him to know he is welcome and invited! It’s not completely the same thing as you, but it made me think of it. I see pictures of you at baby showers and things on Instagram, and I think it is so great that you love your friends and their babies so much. You are such a great friend, Caroline!

  • brianna george
    Posted at 20:47h, 23 August Reply

    I have missed reading about your journey. I am looking forward to the day that you have the good news to share. 🙂

  • Jennifer DeFrates/Heaven Not Harvard
    Posted at 21:54h, 23 August Reply

    It is SO hard. People are trying to be considerate and mindful, but end up hurting us even more.

  • Amy March
    Posted at 13:25h, 25 August Reply

    I wish people WOULD treat me differently and be a little more sensitive. I think this is one of those situations where you should just ask the person what they want or need. There is no situation where that won’t be appreciated.

  • Tedi
    Posted at 22:43h, 01 September Reply

    Yes! I have felt that way too! Thank you for sharing. ?

  • Rhonda
    Posted at 16:19h, 22 September Reply

    *hugs* Oh, my heart hurt for you reading this!

  • Patricia
    Posted at 22:15h, 01 January Reply

    It makes me sad to think of the friends you have lost, but believe me when I say I’m here to stay! Thanks for sharing on this and clearing the air!

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