Ever feel guilty for being pregnant and happy? — The Bump
October 2016 Moms

Ever feel guilty for being pregnant and happy?

maybe this seems like a silly question, but do you ever find yourself hesitating to talk about your pregnancy because it might cause other women to be sad or jealous? So many women have experienced loss, or tried unsuccessfully for years to get pregnant, or never even found a loving partner with whom to have a baby. Here I am with an amazing husband, a simple but
beautiful home, and I'm pregnant after just five months of trying. I know I get to be happy about all of that, I just also feel badly that not every woman who wants it gets the same thing. Anyone else ever hesitate to share the good news because of the bad feelings it might bring up in others?

Re: Ever feel guilty for being pregnant and happy?

  • I'm a multiple loss mom. I have a variety of thoughts on this subject.

    I don't think anyone should ever feel guilty about being happy about a pregnancy. You're entitled to that happiness and others' experiences shouldn't take that away from you. As I said, I've had two losses and I have a friend who is about halfway through her second pregnancy. She told me she was pregnant about two months after my d&c and about three weeks before I had a chemical. After the chemical, I was in a dark place, but I was still overjoyed for my friend. I just couldn't show it. 

    Now that I'm pregnant, I have a friend who's been struggling (I use that term loosely because she's only on her fourth cycle, but she's taking it hard because her first was really easy to conceive). I haven't told her about the pregnancy yet because 1) It's early and 2) I want to do it tactfully and I haven't decided how best to do that yet. I know that she'll be extremely happy for me when I tell her, but it's also going to make her sad for herself.

    So, I guess what I'm trying to say is don't feel guilty about your happiness, but definitely take others' feelings into account when telling them about your pregnancy. (i.e. don't surprise the with the announcement in a room full of people. Yikes)

    LFAF April Siggy: TV/Movie BFFs

    BFP #1 12/2012, DS born 8/2013
    BFP #2 7/2015, MMC and D&C 9/2015
    BFP #3 11/2015, CP
    BFP #4 1/2016, DD born 10/2016

  • von1976von1976 member
    edited January 2016
    We haven't had any actually losses that we knew about (I don't test before my period is due so there may have been some), but it did take us three years to conceive. For the last year, I was a little shit who was very sensitive about other's pregnancies and successes. Even my brother and his wife. I didn't attend their shower (granted, it was a second shower, so I thought it was silly), I didn't make any effort to communicate with him and his wife at all. I didn't want to hear about anything that had to do with the pregnancy. When the baby was born, we said congrats and that was it (we don't live in the same state, so it's not like I'm avoiding them). There were a few showers I didn't attend because I didn't want to be around babies and baby stuff. Stupid and petty, I know, but I was hurting in a way I couldn't even put into words.

    I'd say it's smart to be sensitive around others you know have had losses, and even those you don't know have had losses--because really, you don't know. But don't feel guilty for being happy. People like me who have had trouble may pull away and keep their distance, but probably will be civil and attempt not to run crying from the room at the sight of you (at least I did). Try not to get hurt over it, I'd say. We're all trying the best we can with what we've got. Some just manage better than others.


    Baby GIRL born 9/16/201
    BFP! EDD 8/1/2019 CP 4w2d

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  • I agree with @PeggyOlsonFTW ... You can be happy for your pregnancy and share it with others while being sensitive to their feelings at the same time.  And sometimes just the fact that you're pregnant is going to hurt their feelings, and that is something that is out of your control and that they will have to figure out how to deal with.  I say this having been on the other side of the equation for the past few months.  It only took us 4 months to conceive, but I've wanted a baby for so long that even before then I was jealous when others got pregnant.  It felt like I would never get to experience that.  But I certainly don't blame the other women for getting pregnant!  It was  my issue.  The first day I got my positive, I said to my husband, "now I can be happy again when I find out people are pregnant!"  I just found out a good friend is pregnant and I feel so happy for her! 
    Me (28) & DH (29)
    Married: May 2015
    BFP 1/24/16 EDD 10/4/16
    It's a boy!

  • Speaking from my own experience after loss, I was happy for others at the same time as feeling very sad about my own situation. But, that is something anyone experiencing loss just has to find ways to deal with...even if it means these people might have to choose to distance themselves from you or not take part in some celebrations, it doesn't take away from your right to feel happy, excited, and thankful that things are going well! Despite potential jealousy or sadness, for some it can also be reassuring to know that successful pregnancies are still possible. As for people who just never found a partner, not really sure but, it's also up to them to find ways to cope with their situation. Overall, I would suggest never feeling guilty for being happy, but always try to use common sense to be sensitive (e.g., not expecting baby shower planning to be handled by someone struggling with conception)
  • I also agree with @PeggyOlsonFTW 's response. And as someone who has experienced loss, I've learned that there are so many ways that people handle grief. One of my best friends had a 2 month old when I lost my son. She expressed to me that she felt guilty because she had her son and I didn't, but while I was unbearably sad, I would never want to take anything away from her... I love her and I adore her baby boy. Of course seeing pregnant women and babies after my loss was rough, but I guess the best way I could describe it is bittersweet. Every woman deserves to feel that excitement and joy because it is such an exciting time. For me, the pain didn't coincide with wanting/jealousy over her baby or other women's babies... I wanted MY baby. There's a feeling of happiness for others who were pregnant or had babies, and recognition of what a beautiful experience pregnancy and motherhood is, and a longing and trust in the universe that some day I will have children... whether I birth them or through adoption.  

    That being said, not every person handles grief the same way... and the stages of grief are very real. I have reached acceptance, but for sure there were times of anger. If you are aware of people's situations, just be mindful. But don't ever feel bad about being excited and happy that you have what you have, just be mindful in how you deliver it. 
    Me: 31 | DH: 43
    BFP #1: 7/15/15, SB: 11/14/15
    Rainbow baby DS born 9/29/16!!
    BFP #3 3/26/18 | Due 12/3/18
  • Thanks so much, everyone. It helps to hear this especially from moms who have had loss. 
  • I just do my best to be aware of my audience and sensitive. I'm very thankful for everything I have and that's ok. Its also ok to try to be humble because honestly, there but for grace go any one of us. Today I'm pregnant and I love my baby.

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  • Nope. Don't feel guilty at all!  I've had two consecutive losses in the last year. Everyone deserves to be happy and enjoy their pregnancies!
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