Truth: You can’t stop seeing pregnant women and babies EVERYWHERE when you are trying to conceive (TTC). However, you can learn how to turn those painful triggers from a downward spiral of negative and toxic thoughts to positive and constructive actions that will leave you feeling empowered. Seems impossible, right? It’s not. Tasha Blasi, fertility coach and founder of the Fertilitites Unite Project (FU Project) shares her strategy on how to never be jealous of anyone’s gift of fertility, or baby, and how to avoid pregnancy envy once and for all.
Pregnancy Envy is Very Common
I had a client call me in a panic. She was visiting her good friend from out of town and her new baby. After recently getting the news that she was going to have to do IVF fertility treatments, she just couldn’t fake another visit with someone else’s baby. She knew she would cry, have ultimate baby envy and didn’t want to cause an uncomfortable situation. Plus, she felt that her good friend was a bit smug about her easy pregnancy.
She was asking me how she was going to get through this….and no, she couldn’t fake a migraine.
Like any of us that have had a prolonged fertility journey, “faking it” becomes part of the day-to-day. We do the obligatory “awwwwws” at baby showers and wait until we are in the car to start crying. We know how to fake a nice expression when one of our friends tells us that she accidentally got pregnant (again). And we bite our tongues and hold our middle fingers down when someone offers us the brilliant advice to “just relax” to finally achieve pregnancy.
But faking it, and holding it in, doesn’t feel good. It can be quite suffocating and lead to anxiety during a time when your physical and mental health should be your top priority.
So, I want to share with you a strategy that may allow you to stop faking it. If practiced often, you may never have pregnancy envy again, and you will ironically look forward to seeing pregnant women and other people’s babies while you are going through fertility treatments and ttc.
Yes, it is possible.
You will ironically look forward to seeing pregnant women and OPBs (other people’s babies).
PART 1: Strategy for Removing Pregnancy Envy
Ok, remember the saying that if everyone put their problems in a pile, you would take yours back?
If everyone put their gifts into a pile, you would take yours back.
I understand that getting or staying pregnant is not one of your gifts at the moment, but what about all of the other gifts in your life. Write down all of your natural gifts, blessings, and things you have gotten because you worked hard and achieved it. And if you are using any resources to help you get pregnant, such as IVF or other fertility treatments, it is a gift to have the mental health , strength and financial means to be able to go through with it.
Put this list on paper or store it as a note on your phone. Next, have your partner, best friend, or family member add to your list.
When done, you will feel humbled, proud and empowered with your life and will have a document to prove that you don’t want to pick up anyone else’s pile of gifts because yours are too good to exchange.
Plus, if you see a pattern of hard work and achievements, those gifts are proof that, with the right guidance and resources, you are on your way to your own happy ending and are ready to let go of the pregnancy envy.
PART 2: Strategy for Seeing Pregnant Women
Pregnant women are there to help you. Seeing pregnant women gives you the opportunity for productive, constructive imagery. Take a few moments to imagine what you will look like and feel like pregnant. How will you respond to your first ever positive pregnancy test? How will it feel to have your baby there? What will your first child’s name be? What will you pregnancy announcement be? What will you wear? You know you are going to rock your baby belly and curvy figure (more gifts to put on your chart).
You don’t want to be her. Remember your gifts–too many amazing ones that you are not willing to give up. And if one of your gifts was your partner, I am guessing you would not want to exchange yours for hers.
And after you use the opportunity to imagine your pregnancy, send that woman and baby-to-be so much thanks and love for the opportunity to remind you that that will be you one day with your own children. Doesn’t that feel good?
PART 3: Strategy for Baby Envy
We love babies so much that we want one badly enough to put ourselves through mental and physical pain to get one. But not that one.
Use your current baby envy to your advantage. Seeing a mom stroll her baby or getting the opportunity to hold a baby allows you to use your constructive imagery to “experience” being a mom.
There is a lot of science to explain how powerful “perceived experience” is in terms of improving your self-confidence about that particular event. The key to “experiencing” something fully is to use your five senses. Imagine or gather the smells, sights, sounds, feel, and taste (with tiny kisses on the head) of the baby. And before leaving the baby, send him/her thanks and love and tell him/her to put in a good word for you with the babies looking for mommies.
My client did these exercises before she left. She said that the visit was fantastic, the baby was adorable (but not as cute as hers will be), and she felt empowered with how she learned to restructure her thoughts of her own life and for her future life. Pregnancy envy , baby envy or other feelings of envy when you see close friends or family members pregnant is a real thing. But by practicing this three strategies I’ve provided, you’ll be able to face pregnant women , attend any baby shower or hop on social media without all of the pregnancy envy you once felt.
Try it and let me know if it helped you too!