April 2013 Moms

Thunder Stolen

So, I'm 10 weeks today (woo hoo!) and we announced to family only last week that we're expecting - first baby for us and first grandchild on my husband's side. All the family has been really excited (I even got an "it's about time" from my grandma. I'm only 31!). Then, last Saturday, when my husband got together with his family, his sister announced that she's also pregnant (about 7 weeks now). While really happy for her and her husband, I now feel completely deflated, that my thunder has been stolen and that my very exciting news has been overshadowed. One reason for this is that I'm American, so all of my family is in the US, but I live in the UK, where my husband is originally from so all of his family is here. I'm not someone who loves the spotlight, but this is my moment, and I just feel like his family's focus will automatically shift to my sister-in-law because she's their flesh and blood and I'm an "in-law". I have a great relationship with all of my in laws, so this could be unfounded, but I can't help the way I feel. My husband doesn't really get it and thinks going to pre-natal classes will help but potentially good friends due around the same time (while wonderful!) isn't the same as a doting family.

 Has anyone else experienced something similar? Am I being totally irrational? Any advice/input/help is welcome! Thanks!! 

Re: Thunder Stolen

  • I think you are being irrational.  I am sure there is enough love for the two babies.  And think positively, you can bond with your SIL over your pregnancies!  Good luck!
  • image Mis+Shapes:
    I think you are being irrational.  I am sure there is enough love for the two babies.  And think positively, you can bond with your SIL over your pregnancies!  Good luck!

    Agreed.  

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  • I don't think you're being completely irrational-- it is hard to feel like your special news has been overshadowed.  However, I am sure your DH's family is excited about both of the pending new arrivals, and once they are here, will absolutely dote on both of them! 

    Plus, think of all the positives: your LO will have a cousin almost exactly the same age, which IMO, is a wonderful blessing!  I grew up with no cousins close to me in age and was always jealous of those with cousins who were almost like a another set of siblings. 

    Perhaps you could try involving your DH's family in some pregnancy-related things, like shopping for baby things, parties, whatever-- with just you and not DH's sister.  I am sure you will feel the love.  Good luck.

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  • While I do think you're experiencing some immediate, maybe a bit irrational feelings right now, I can understand your feelings. But take this opportunity to bond with your SIL and your ILs. While you are their DIL, your H is their son and I'm sure your ILs will be around to support both of you.

    You may be shocked that another family member is "sharing the spotlight," but it's all happy news. Support each other and be glad you have someone to compain with, hang out with, and your LOs will be super-close in age!

    EDIT: As a side note, my SIL is due a week before me. While it took the wind out of our sails when we announced to her, we're really happy for her and super-excited about our LOs being so close in age. This is SIL's 3rd and last LO and our 3rd p/g and 1st take home (FX). Just be glad you have someone to share the experience with.

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  • I agree with the PP, I understand wanting more time in the limelight, especially since it's your first and all, but think of it this way, you two will be due within 3 weeks of each other, what a great bonding experience! I wish I had a friend or family member that I could 'share' pregnancy with :) I'm sure everyone is double-excited to have new family members due within a month of each other!
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  • You are only focusing on the negative.  Think of it this way - you and your SIL will get to share in all of the wonderful milestones, and your child and hers will be cousins born withing weeks of each other.  What a great opportunity.  My SIL and I were pregnant with our first 2 at the same time - and our kids are like siblings more than cousins.  They are each other's best friends.  Enjoy the time WITH the family!
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  • I think it's great! I was a little worried about telling family because my cousin (who is more like a sister to me) is pregnant with her first and this is our second, so I thought she might feel like we were stealing her special time. There was no one more ecstatic than she was, though. She is so excited to have someone else to go through it with who is family and that she knows will be a part of her life forever, and she's thrilled that our kids will be so close in age. Try to think about how much fun it can be to have both of you so close in your due dates, and how great it will be to have playdates together and share advice and commiserations throughout the pregnancy and after the babies are born. There's lots of love to go around!
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  • You are only focusing on the negative.  Think of it this way - you and your SIL will get to share in all of the wonderful milestones, and your child and hers will be cousins born within weeks of each other.  What a great opportunity.  My SIL and I were pregnant with our first 2 at the same time - and our kids are like siblings more than cousins.  They are each other's best friends.  Enjoy the time WITH the family!
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  • I think my snark may come out a little, but hear me out.

    You're not the only woman with a uterus in your family. Your sister in law wasn't going to wait to have a baby just so you can be the only one pregnant and have the spotlight solely on you.

    While I understand that you may feel overshadowed, both babies I'm sure will be loved equally and your sister in law and you now have something to bond over. It's a speical time in both of your lives right now. Share the spotlight. Don't get upset over petty things. It's not good for you.

    My sister in law and I are both pregnant right now and I love it. We're only 2 1/2 months apart so my in laws will go from no grandchilderen to two grandchildren within weeks of each other.

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  • This is silly. My son and my neice are two days apart it isn't that big of a deal. My son was two weeks late/neice two weeks earlier. Nbd.

    I understand missing your family but don't blame your SIL's pregnancy.
  • image kjhaes:

     I'm not someone who loves the spotlight, but this is my moment, and I just feel like his family's focus will automatically shift to my sister-in-law because she's their flesh and blood and I'm an "in-law".

     

    ...Your baby is just as much their grandchild as her baby (do the math). In fact, your baby will carry their name (as it is their son's child), so that may be endearing to them. 

    You keep saying you feel alone because you are far from your family, but you aren't ALONE in your pregnancy-- you have a family member going through the exact same thing.

    Stop being petty and focus on how your entire family is growing.  

     


     

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  • If it makes you feel any better I'll be showing up at my sil wedding in two weeks with a nice big baby bump that most of the family doesnt know about.
  • I get it.  I really do.  I keep ending up pregnant at the same time as someone in my family.  Last time it was my brother's wife pregnant with twins. This time, it's my husband's sister pregnant with their #4.  It just keeps happening.  On one hand, it does kind of suck.  I think it would be fun to be the only pregnant one, but at the same time......it's really nice having someone else you know very closely that is pregnant and going through the same things you are.  It helps a lot especially after the baby is born!  Many nights I found myself comparing notes with my SIL.  Her twins are 5 weeks older than my daughter and it's really helped us to know what is normal/not normal and to give eachother tips and tricks of things that are working for us/not working.  We compared notes on nursing MANY times and when it came to sleep training we offered eachother support........even when it came to how our marriage was feeling after baby, it was just nice to have someone else going through the exact same thing that you are at the same time.  She wasn't in that smug "been there. done that. get over it" phase that some people get to after they've had a kid for a while.....she was in the thick of it just as we were and it really was nice to know that what we were going through was the exact same as someone else. 

    Another thing to think about is, if these are the first grandbabies for the family......they will be so loved!  When there are familiy parties, you probably won't get a turn to hold your baby because those 2 are just going to be passed around the family and loved to pieces! 

    I really understand that feeling of the wind taken out of your sails, but try to focus on all the good that will come from the 2 of you getting to go through this experience together.  It's your own little support group! 

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  • image teddidan:

    I think my snark may come out a little, but hear me out.

    You're not the only woman with a uterus in your family. Your sister in law wasn't going to wait to have a baby just so you can be the only one pregnant and have the spotlight solely on you.

    While I understand that you may feel overshadowed, both babies I'm sure will be loved equally and your sister in law and you now have something to bond over. It's a speical time in both of your lives right now. Share the spotlight. Don't get upset over petty things. It's not good for you.

    My sister in law and I are both pregnant right now and I love it. We're only 2 1/2 months apart so my in laws will go from no grandchilderen to two grandchildren within weeks of each other.

    All of this. THREE of my four SIL's were pregnant when I was pregnant with DD. One even announced her pregnancy at my shower. However, I'm thrilled that DD has cousins close in age and it was nice to have people sharing my experiences as I was going through them. 

    Did you expect her to just not tell anyone? You can only hide a pregnancy for so long. 

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  • I don't think you're being irrational, pregnancy feelings can be very tender and volitile and pregnancy is a time when we all need a community of support. Normally that's our family but for those of us that live away from our family, it's often in-laws.

    Your husband is right in some ways, prenatal classes and such will definitely help to fill the support void. I found them to be fantastic, not just birth class but also prenatal yoga and finding a local maternity store that does groups. Some of the ladies I met during my pregnancy are now my closest friends and we celebrate the joys of all our life events together. In fact, one of my pregnancy friends was the very first (other than DH) person I told about this pregnancy and she was absolutely thrilled and so encouraging. 

    Also, there is so much love in a family for all babies, just be sure you communicate your need for his family to help fill the role of family support. Let your MIL know that you appreciate her so much since your mother is far away and that you are thankful that she can be there for you during this time. Ignite a closeness and communicate your needs. It will be okay. 

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  • If there is anything you're entitled to in life its how you feel. You cant really help how you feel (especially when pregnant) but you can choose how you react to it. Dont feel bad for feeling a certain way, But try being very excited for her and teaming up, she will probably be a good support for you. The positivity you exude will only come back to you too. Just try not to express the negativity.
  • image Fremdschamen:

    I don't think you're being completely irrational-- it is hard to feel like your special news has been overshadowed.  However, I am sure your DH's family is excited about both of the pending new arrivals, and once they are here, will absolutely dote on both of them! 

    Plus, think of all the positives: your LO will have a cousin almost exactly the same age, which IMO, is a wonderful blessing!  I grew up with no cousins close to me in age and was always jealous of those with cousins who were almost like a another set of siblings. 

    Perhaps you could try involving your DH's family in some pregnancy-related things, like shopping for baby things, parties, whatever-- with just you and not DH's sister.  I am sure you will feel the love.  Good luck.

    I agree with this post. It is pretty annoying that she announced when you did, but there are also a lot of positives!  

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  • Nothing about her being pregnant is going to keep you from enjoying your own pregnancy.  You announced first, and she let you have that moment.  She likely knew she was 6 weeks pregnant, and kept it quiet so that you could enjoy it (I'm assuming).  

    I imagine it's hard to not be around your blood relatives, but try not to make this about you versus her.  It's about you getting a baby soon, and that's all that matters!  Make more friends there, and keep your family posted so that you're getting the excitement from them too.  Remember, she may feel the same way--she has to share this moment with you too!  

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  • I've been in your shoes a couple of times and I can tell you it is all about PERSPECTIVE.

    I had one SIL announce at my bridal shower, one SIL announce at our rehearsal dinner, one SIL announced at DS's baptism, and another announce a couple of weeks after we announced we were expecting DD. I am not close to my SILs so it bothered me (my MIL readily admits that they are all about attention and apologized) but I refused to let it get in the way of my excitement. I was not going to waste my time and energy on something that I could not control.

    When I was pregnant with DS there were six of us that were pregnant at the same time in our circle of friends and it was AWESOME! As PP mentioned it was so cool to have support/encouragement and someone to share the ups and downs of pregnancy. 

    If you adopt a negative perspective about your SILs pregnancy there is a real risk that a negative perspective is going to be part of other areas of your life. Do what you need to do and feel what you need to feel but you have to move on!

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  • I might be oversimplifying, but babies are a blessing and I'm sure that everyone in your family is excited for both of you.  I was pregnant with my sister and siser in law last time.  It was my first pregnancy and their 2nd and 3rd.

    Our Moms were both very excited and supportive and I never felt that my SIL or Sister got special treatment.

    Babies are exciting- enjoy your pregnancy and don't worry about how you expected things would have been...  Smile

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  • When I was pregnant with my son my brother's wife and DH's 2 sisters were pregnant too. I don't think any of us felt like our thunder was stolen or we were stealing someone's thunder. Just think of how much fun your baby will get to have with their cousin! I can tell you I am so grateful for how close all of DS's cousins are to him! He's so lucky!
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  • OP, while I can understand your disappointment, I think you need to realize your SIL did not do this on purpose. She's what? Only a week or two behind you? It's not like she stole your thunder on purpose - I mean heck, she was already pregnant when you announced you were expecting! In fact, she might even feel the same way about you right now - Maybe she was getting ready to tell her big news when you came in and stole "her" thunder.

    As PP said, there will be plenty of love for both babies - And think about it: your LO will have a cousin close in age to grow up with. I think that's pretty darn awesome :) 

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  • image Monsieur_et_Madame_Ha:

    OP, while I can understand your disappointment, I think you need to realize your SIL did not do this on purpose. She's what? Only a week or two behind you? It's not like she stole your thunder on purpose - I mean heck, she was already pregnant when you announced you were expecting! In fact, she might even feel the same way about you right now - Maybe she was getting ready to tell her big news when you came in and stole "her" thunder.

    As PP said, there will be plenty of love for both babies - And think about it: your LO will have a cousin close in age to grow up with. I think that's pretty darn awesome :) 

    Well said.

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  • Here are some positive things about the situation:

    You can get closer to your SIL.  You can shop for maternity clothes together, b*tch about pregnancy symptoms together, etc.  When your babies are born, you can share toys, help each other out by recommending/not recommending baby products you try....AND, when you are sick of your ILs visiting you when you have a newborn, you can shoo them back towards your SILs house ;)

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  • My SIL told me that they want to TTC in December. Should we have waited an entire year to TTC so we wouldn't be pregnant at the same time? Doesn't that seem like an odd request?
  • My SIL and I were pregnant at the same time.  We had our babies then the other two SILs got pregnant around the same time.  Both had their babies and now I'm pregnant again.  Sorry but it just happens when there are several women of child-bearing age.  I like that my son has close cousins.
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