Last week, I got a call from one of my college friends. We have an interesting relationship. It’s generally been a bit unequal - she tends to need more support, and I give it. That’s how our friendship started, and the pattern stuck. Now that we no longer live in the same city, we have sporadic but long phone conversations. Sometimes she calls because she needs support - she’s panicking about her relationship with her boyfriend or some such. It’s how the friendship has been for a long time, and it doesn’t generally go the other way. I don’t know if it’s because I find it hard to talk to her or if it’s just the nature of things, but in keeping with our usual patterns, I hadn’t told her we were trying, let alone that we were having problems.
The other day, she just called to talk (and to tell me about her weekend and meeting her boyfriend’s parents and all, but still, no crisis.). It was HCG night, so the topic was fresh on my mind, and so I opened the conversation. (Something about being sad looking at pictures of a friend’s baby...) It went better than expected, but we’ll see how things change now.
Then, the other day, I told another of my research advisors. After our official meeting, he asked how things were going, since he had noticed that I’d been, um, distracted for a while now. So I gave him the vague version - we’re trying, it’s taking some medical intervention, kinda stressful, don’t ask how it’s going, when I have news I’ll tell you. Much less detailed than the info my advisor has (she likes to hear the details - but that’s another story).
I think all of this coming out is related to my attempts at postitve thinking. I realized that it takes a lot of energy to keep this all private - this has been an intense and draining journey, and while I don’t have any desire to broadcast the information to everyone I meet, I’m finding ways to let people in just a little bit.
The next challenge is to find a way to broach the subject with the pregnant friend we’re going to see at the wedding next weekend. I’m thinking about sending her an email in advance, so I can say exactly what I need to say without interruption (by her or by my likely sobbing breakdown). At least, this was the plan a couple of weeks ago. But now that I’m in this moderately hopeful place, I’m not sure if I need to do it. I know I just said it takes too much out of me to keep this private sometimes, but I don’t know if it will take more out of me to have to talk about it.
I’m working on finding the middle ground. I’m thinking about sending her a note explaining, briefly, what’s been going on and asking that she be sensitive about pregnancy talk (or asking about our pregnancy plans - PLANS! - how quaint!) What do you think - will that do more harm than good or is it worthwhile? What would you say?