When Life Gives You Lemons

Trying to make the most out of infertility, and life in general. This is my journey to conceive, after a miscarriage and D&C that left me with Asherman's Syndrome.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

My grief is better than yours

So a friend of mine recently lost her father. Granted, the circumstances under which he died are heartbreaking: he suffered from depression and committed suicide at 65. I realize this must be a terrible loss - to lose your parent and not have time to process your lifetime together or properly say goodbye. I though I was being a good friend by checking in with my grieving friend and making sure she was ok. I made plans with her, laughed when I thought she wanted to laugh and listened when I thought she need a good cry. I'm not trying to toot my own here, I'm clearly not without fault, but a few weeks ago I had a tizzy with this friend over our mutual states of suffering. I'm still slightly seething about the situation. We had plans to get together, and as the day drew closer, I fessed up that I wasn't feeling very positive and capable of giving her moral support and didn't know if I was up for a hang out. This was toward the end of my 42 day cycle, where I wondered if my period was ever going to show up, and I was feeling very emotional and mental. When I told her I was feeling this way, she cancelled on me and told me she couldn't be around someone so depressive and in a state of such despair. She basically told me she couldn't be my friend right now and that I should seek professional help. So I'm not allowed to have a mental moment and feel really bad about myself? That seems really harsh. I'm not allowed to share with a friend when I'm feeling hopeless? Then what's the point in calling that person a friend in the first place. I'm not entitled to my feelings yet she can cry to me and hold it against me that she lost her father.
I know what's it's like to hurt and to feel heavy, yet I'm not entitled to throw myself a pity party b/c someone else is suffering? I'm tired of being the bigger person, of having to put my own emotions aside to be there for someone else.
So to this I say, Selfish Much?!?! I have been dealing with my grief for almost a year now. I too had a loss, and although my loss didn't get to be buried, or eulogized or put into thoughts of remembrance, to me the pain of loss was and still is very real. Where was my cheer up session, my offers to go get ice cream, or eat Chinese food or just watch a movie? I feel like I was just dismissed with the typical "Get Over it -you had a miscarriage, lots of people do".
I say It's normal to have to deal with the loss of parent. I realize I'm fortunate to still have both of mine here, but I know there will be a time when I too will need to say goodbye to them and I try to tel lthem I love them often. But the loss of a pregnancy - and with it the loss of any potential...well, none of us should have to deal with that.
So I say my grief goes deeper than hers - it's physical, it resulted in 3 surgeries. I experienced real tangible pain in addition to the emotional sense of emptiness that accompanied my loss. I was put on hormones and antibiotics that wreaked havoc on my body. I lost something I can never gain back, and with it my hopes and dreams for the possibility of my own family. I think I win.


  • At 3:47 PM, Anonymous Nikole said…

    I'm so sorry to hear about the insensitivity of your friend. It sounds like she is too lost in her own grief to provide the kind of support that you need and deserve. It also sounds like you have been a wonderful friend and support system, and I'm sorry that you didn't get that in return. I think your feelings are completely justified.

    I'm not one for comparing grief, but I agree with you (of course) that no one should have to suffer the particular pains of losing a pregnancy. There are so many difficult things about m/c... that no one talks about it, or understands unless they've been there, or knows what to say. That unlike other deaths, where there are mourning rituals that help those in grieving deal with the pain, there is nothing in place to help guide people in helping those they love to deal with the grief of m/c--heck--there's so little to guide those of us who have experienced m/c in working through our grief.

    I'm not sure exactly how I would handle this situation, but I think it is perfectly justified to be angry and to want to put some distance between you and this person right now. I found that, with my first few losses, very few of my friends knew how to provide support, and I clung desparatly to the few that did.

    Oh, and thanks for the comment on my weblog--it was very much appreciated on a very sad day.

  • At 6:14 AM, Blogger Sarah said…

    I would certainly hate to compare grief, but I know what you mean. I agree that your friend should have been there to comfort you. You comforted her while you were still grieving. I think you've hit the nail on the head — when it's a pregnancy loss people expect you to get over it because "you can always try again." Try not to let you pal get you down. Hopefull she'll realize how insensitive she was.


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