Sunday, March 7, 2021

Thoughtless v. Thoughtful

The differences between people will never cease to amaze me.



My oldest sister included me on a group text today. Her stepdaughter gave birth. So there I was, without warning, staring at a beaming mother holding her newborn followed by another picture of just the newborn. I haaate newborn pics, especially when the baby is in the arms of the mother while still in the hospital. It's such an intimate moment, one that I never got to have and one that I don't care to witness in others.

I was so upset. I was really hurt. I texted just my sister (not the group text, which I immediately deleted) and said, "Please don't send me any baby pictures. Thank you. And congratulations!" 

You know it couldn't end there.

She wrote back saying she wouldn't send me any more. I told her thank you, that baby pictures were still very difficult for me. I told her that I was crying pretty hard and it sucked. (Why should I protect her from my feelings? I WAS crying hard and I felt she needed to know that.)

She wrote back saying she had debated including me or not, but she didn't want to leave me out.

I texted, "I'm already left out. I'm infertile."

Of course it couldn't end there either.

She literally wrote, "You are not! You have tons to contribute. You are the best aunt and sister."

I texted, "It's not the same!!!!!"

I had to end this.

I wrote, "Please don't argue with me. Let's just let this go."

She didn't write back. 

It ended.



I can't help but compare today's experience with another experience I had a couple of days ago.

I was in bed, scrolling through twitter to get sports news, fabric updates, and read funny tweets. My newsfeed is pretty well curated so I mostly see only stuff that pertains to my interests. 

One thing that I've noticed on twitter (maybe they do it on fb and ig too, I'm not on those platforms) is that people will write TW to stand for "trigger warning" before posting something that might be upsetting. I've seen trigger warnings for mention of suicide, abuse, and sexual assault.

Well, imagine my surprise when I read a tweet that said "TW: Pregnancy Announcement."

Whaaa?? I had never seen such a thing.

I read on.

The poster didn't stop there. Before sharing her pregnancy news she wrote something along the lines of, "As we share our good news we understand that many are walking the path of infertility and/or loss. Our hearts are with you and so are our prayers." 

Only then did she say that she was happy to share the news that she was pregnant.

So a total stranger posted 1) a trigger warning for a pregnancy announcement and 2) a message of love and understanding for those going through infertility and pregnancy loss before she even wrote that she was pregnant.

How. Freaking. Thoughtful.

See people?? It's not that hard to be considerate.

I was touched. I was seriously touched. 

I sent her a private message. 

I told her that her pregnancy announcement was the most thoughtful announcement I'd ever seen. I told her I was a survivor of infertility and that the way she shared her best news ever made me smile. I told her she was already an awesome mom. Then she wrote back with the kindest message and I replied wishing her and her family nothing but the best.

A warning before a pregnancy announcement? So anyone who is having a bad moment/day/year can keep on scrolling and skip past it? Freaking beautiful. So considerate and full of thought.


And that is my weekend tale of my two very different experiences.


  1. I love that pregnancy announcement. How beautiful!

    And regarding your sister: Exactly. We are already left out.

    I also hate group messages like that. And I also can't watch a newborn in mother's arms. Too intimate. And too much of reminder what I have missed and will never have.

    1. My sister hurt my feelings. No one in my family has even attempted to understand my experiences and my life. They want to sweep it under the rug as something that happened in the past but has no bearing on my present. Quite honestly, they're idiots. Especially because they are all obsessed with their own children.

      Thank God for the understanding from strangers. I had a very beautiful exchange over private messaging with the woman who announced her pregnancy on twitter. It was so thoughtful and made me feel good. It was such a contrast to all of my exchanges with my own family.

  2. Scan photos and breast feeding are particular triggers of mine. I cope with them pretty well these days, but there's nothing quite like that initial shock when hit with an unexpected image.

    I hope you can talk to your sister again soon. It's so hard when people don't understand, despite your (and even their) best efforts. I'm glad you're the "best aunt and best sister." But of course, we know it's not the same, and not what you had hoped for. It can bring its own joys, but that doesn't mean we haven't suffered loss. Sending hugs.

    And oh joy for a sensitive stranger. Makes you wonder what she's been through to understand. A good reminder that there IS understanding in the world - just not usually in our own families. More hugs.

    1. Oh gosh, I had a classmate from grad school text me a sonogram a couple of months ago, completely unprompted! It didn't hurt me like newborn pics do, but it sure annoyed me. She knows I don't have kids. I haven't talked to her in years. Why would I care about a sonogram?? I chalked it up to "mommy brain," told her congrats, and moved on.

      I will talk to my sister again. My family can't get rid of me lol. I have zero expectations for any understanding though. When her kid shared that they were gay a couple of years ago, she called me in hysterics because she would never be a grandmother. I calmly told her that gay people can be parents and that it was actually me that would never be a grandmother. I assured her she would get through this, but I was massively disappointed in her judgmental reaction toward her own child.

      Thankfully, there are others in this world that understand! Even if my family doesn't/can't/won't make an effort...

  3. Like Mali, I cope pretty well these days, but I can still be upset by something that comes out of left field like that. Glad you had a good experience to balance out the thoughtless one, at least a little bit!

    1. Yeah, I don't like being caught off guard with a picture like that. I have a couple of friends that will text me and ask, "Can you I send you a picture?" That makes a big difference to me. It shows consideration for my feelings and my reality.