Feed the Feeders

by Kathy on September 4, 2007 · 5 comments

in FET #1, Sean, Secondary Infertility

I was talking with my mom this afternoon and venting about how, among other things, some of my friends and family members aren’t always very sensitiveto my feelings when it comes to having struggled with secondary infertility for over three years and having had three pregnancy losses. Sometimes I wish that after one or more pregnancy losses, or when a couple is struggling with infertility, that our families and friends were required to attend a class in how to talk to us, what to say, what we might be thinking or feeling, before they were allowed to interact with us again. I know that they mean well and try to do and say the right things… It just makes it that much harder when we have to educate them on how to deal with us.

There are certainly a lot of people in our life who do seem to really care and go out of their way to try to be sensitive to our situation. However, I am often reminded how clueless about our situation and feelings that some people in our life seem to be much of the time. I know that a lot of our friends and family members try and care deeply about us, but due to having had very different life experiences (which for many include being able to easily conceive and sustain pregnancies), some of our loved ones admittedlyhave no idea what it is like to struggle with infertility or have had miscarriages, etc.

So many little comments and things get to me these days… Recently Sean and I were spending time with and helping to care for a young loved one who was wearing an “I’m the Big Brother” shirt. To those who haven’t dealt with secondary infertility, I would imagine I may sound like I am way overreacting, as of course this little boy can and should be proud to be a big brother and be able to advertize their status to anyone and everyone. However, I happen to know that the child didn’t choose his outfit that day and I doubt that it ever occurred to the person who did that it might be hard for me to see, when Sean is STILL not a big brother after over 3 years of TTC#2 (trying to conceive #2).

Anyway, I don’t expect (or want) our friends and family to walk on eggshells around us. I think that most of the time I handle things very well and I certainly did not comment on the t-shirt or indicate that I was upset by it. It is just one of those little things that after all I have been through, I would think twice about if and when Sean ever becomes a big brother and I knew we or he were going to be around someone close to us who was having difficulty trying to have another child and might find it hard to see. That said, I understand that those who haven’t been in my shoes, can’t possibly think of everything that might possibly offend me, nor should they have to. It more my issue that I need to work through, I just wish sometimes that some people could be a little more sensitive.

Anyway, the point of this post was actually not to vent about my friends and family members, who I know do love me and care about me, despite some of the things they do and say from time to time. The idea was to share with you some great advice that my mom gave me during our phone conversation earlier today…

After listening to me complain about why some people in my life, whom I go out of my way to say to, and do for, thoughtful and caring things, rarely return the actions and sentiments, my mom relayed the story of one of her friends telling her awhile back about how one way to be happier in life is to “feed the feeders.” Not that it isn’t right or good to do things for others without expecting anything in return, of course we should. However, knowing how much we appreciate those special people in our lives that really care about us and show us in what they do and say, be sure that we make a point to shower those same people with lots of love and attention too. Try to focus on feeding the feeders and not just the eaters!

I thought that was an excellent point, as sometimes I get so worked up thinking about those people in my life who could treat me better, that it surely takes away from my time and ability to be grateful for and feed my feeders! And when it comes down to it, though I have a number of people in my life who are really just eaters, I have a lot more that are feeders and I should try harder to focus on and put my energyinto them! Thank you again mom (as I know you will be reading this) for sharing such a powerful insight about relationships! :)Thank you all for reading, for your comments, your thoughts and your prayers. I know that you are some of my blessed feeders and I am so grateful for you! Only three more days until our follow up appointment with our RE on Friday! To say I am ready for and excited about it would definitely be an understatement… I’ll be back soon! 🙂

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 T-girl September 5, 2007 at 8:35 am

Your mom got the point exactly right, thanks for sharing!
Already just a few days for your appointment, that’s exciting!
Can’t wait to hear about the plan!


2 Deborah October 18, 2011 at 7:36 am

Here from the Time Warp – what a good way to think about things. I worry sometimes that I'm being more of an eater than a feeder, but maybe focusing on helping those who feed me can help with that. It's also helpful to remmeber that there will always be some of both types of people, no matter what we do. Thanks for sharing your mom's advice!


3 Lavender Luz October 18, 2011 at 2:55 pm

I love this! I will remember your mom's wise words about feeding the feeders.

Now. Where's my ice cream?



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