Saturday, April 9, 2011

Social Misfit

I was always a quiet person. I could never attract friends easily as some do. I always looked to connect with like minded people so that I could voice my opinion without offending others. Which always left me with few friends but deep & lasting friendship. I also suspect that this was because I was never a good communicator.

Needless to say, my communication skills have taken a further beating. I have a strong feeling that I will never ever fit into the social circle again. Because now am loaded with the grief of losing my baby and all the resentment that came with that.

This was proved by my recent experience on a public forum. It is a forum to discuss infertility issues for Indian ladies. It is also frequented by people who have had losses (mostly a miscarriage).

A poster (who is in her 30's & has had recurrent miscarriages) posted about her dilemma in having had to lie to a prospective employer that she has a kid (she is actually childless) in order to save the embarrassment. (It is possible, in an Indian set-up if you are 30 years and do not have a child, people think something is seriously wrong).

She was looking for some response to her 'act' from childless women in their 30's.

Many women responded with a central theme that its okay to be childless in 30's. There is nothing to be embarrassed about. (Fair enough, these women have fertility issues and are still trying for a baby.)

I couldn't respond coolly as everyone did. I wanted to empathize with the poster because she has had recurrent losses (may be not like me, but loss is a loss). And am not a regular infertile lady. I went through the trying period of one year before having a 4 pound baby whom I lost in a NICU  four months ago. I was having one of those days (I agree, this is in my defence), but I wrote down a very strong response. Here is what I wrote verbatim.

I know exactly what you mean. Every day, at least a few times my mind drifts to my school mates, college mates whose pictures with a school going baby is proudly exhibited on the facebook. Most of them were dumb, failed their subjects, there was no chance of getting a job, so the only option was to get married and make babies. Some, who were very good and have a flourishing career have 2-3 year old babies. Even guys who are my age have children. My sil who is exactly my age (30), actually a tenth fail, is happily married, has a seven year old girl and her life is chill. I'm jealous of all these people. I tell my H sometimes I should have been a duffer - then invariably I would have got married at 21 and perhaps had a baby by now. (I don't mean it - but the levels of frustration am going force such thoughts into my mind).

I know what made you say that lie. Its your deep yearning to have your baby right? Who are rightfully yours? If you hadn't had those tragic miscarriages, your baby would be going to school now. If you don't mind can I suggest something? Tell the next person who asks you about kids the truth. I had a hairdresser asking me two days ago if I have kids and I bluntly said no. I didn't want to put her in an awkward position. But next time, I'm planning to tell them I had a baby and lost him (in that way at least am not denying my baby). I really wish you get your children.

A woman responded to what I wrote.

So you think, ppl who dont have a job and have kids are duffers and fools? I quit my flourishing job to join my hubby and have a family(which fingers crossed and still in process), so am lame and dumb is it? As much as I feel sorry for you, I also feel you have a very low attitude that needs a 360 degree change. I mean I understand ur situation and it is ok to be jealous/envious but these kind of thoughts/comments are a little overboard. 

I'm already feeling guilty about my strong comment. But this lady has no clue what am going through. So I write again.

Thanks for the advice on attitude change. Don't say you understand my situation because you don't understand. (You aren't even there). You don't want to be.

What I said was very subjective. If you read my post you will know am specifically talking about people I know only.

It does not apply to you or anyone else here, because I don't know you. Do I?
What I said I was an unfair comment, I agree. It is my darker side perhaps. But then its very subjective.
It is not to offend anyone here at all.

The lady has a habit of reading between the lines and picking on people. She quotes my half sentences and writes.

"I tell my H sometimes I should have been a duffer - then invariably I would have got married at 21 and perhaps had a baby by now. (I don't mean it - but the levels of frustration am going force such thoughts into my mind)." well this is like generalizing that to have a baby we need to be a duffer and get married at 21. duh? sadly there are other factors involved too.
"(You aren't even there)"
Geez! lady, I have read ur other post and felt very sorry for you. But think twice before you type! Dont even say this to anybody. Wish nobody should ever be there, if you really underwent pain.
"What I said I was an unfair comment, I agree. It is my darker side perhaps"
There you said so yourself. And it should only be good for me to take off from here. 

Nobody on the forum is defending me. Poor me. I have to defend myself before its proven that am indeed a wretched woman, a vamp. Someone who lost her baby first and now wishes ill for others. I'am battered, but I get up, gather some strength and write again to defend my honour (not much left anyway).

I accepted whatever I said was subjective. That means its not generalization? In a civic forum, can matters be laid to rest here?

No. I don't wish what happened to me should happen to anyone. That was not what I meant when I said 'you aren't even there'.

The reason I said that was to just show that you don't 'understand'. You felt sorry for me, I get that. But you don't 'understand'. I don't expect you to understand.
My post (before you butted in) was directed to answer Original Poster's problem. I understand her pain very well. I hope she gets some comfort (irrational, I know). That was an attempt. I'm certainly not looking for a nod from you.

Some background about this woman. She's not in her 30 but I guess couple of years younger, she's first time pregnant (soon to deliver) and she's not had any infertility issues to deal with (as her one post suggested).  What is she doing in this forum anyway? Hm.

If you are still reading my post, and if you believe am not a vamp really with a low attitude, do you think I should continue on a forum like the above? Please, tell me.


  1. I don't know. I think you have to ask yourself if you are getting comfort from this board? Is it helping you?

    I remember for awhile, I felt jealous towards pregnant women and those who (I thought) easily had their children; I also judged those "worthy" of having children and those who were not (in my opinion). It passed after awhile. I think its just something we go through as part of our grief. We want what they have so badly.

    Remembering your Vitu with you and sending you much love.

  2. Thanks Monique. I have decided I will not be going to such boards. At the moment I don't fit there. Hope I will be able to get past the jealousy someday. Hope I will be a mother again.

  3. I agree with Monique. If the forum isn't bringing you comfort then perhaps it's best to stay away for a while.

    I find that the written word can easily be misunderstood. You can't hear tone or nuance when things are written down. So sometimes words can get twisted to mean something you never intended them to. So don't be too hard on yourself, you know what was in your heart when you wrote the original post.

  4. I agree with the other ladies- if the forum doesn't help or makes you feel bad about yourself, don't post there.

  5. I don't even think its so much the forum, as that one particular poster. It's useless to try and explain things any further as this person will clearly nit-pick and dissect each of your posts and start an argument. If I were you, I'd 'lurk' and read, and perhaps not post for a while. This individual will find another poor soul to pick on and eventually she'll be exposed.

    As for your comment, I GET it! I've said it more than once that perhaps my life would be different if I wasn't a 'good girl' and got knocked up at 18. I'm sure I wouldn't have the education or the life experience, but I'd have a child. For those of us who have experienced infertility or difficulty combined with the loss of a child, we know that these are simply musings of "what if". Hang in there!

  6. dear Joanna: Thanks for saying you GET it! The frustration at not being able to be a mother and the age walking past in front of your eyes. I'm worried about going back on this board not just because of this one lady (she is not 30, not infertile, infact pregs), but the lack of empathy of others (>30 and infertile). If they couldn't connect remotely to what I was trying to say, there is a very good chance I wouldn't be able to connect to them in anyway at all.

  7. That's a good point - in that case, find another group. There are plenty on facebook and online...and frankly, I've found more support from my fellow blogging BLM's, as they truly understand what I'm going through! ((Hugs))

  8. Hey Chaitali, I don't think you should let a party pooper influence ur decision to be on a forum. However having said that, no point being on a forum that makes u more upset than giving u comfort. About insensitive souls I know there are plenty who despite going thru infertility challenges ask u to move on again and again wen u share ur pain about a loss. But really I forgive them for I know they have not been where I have. So now I have stopped sharing my emotions and just update/ enquire about my journey in infertility land. Dont let people get u down. Ur Vitu will make u stronger with each passing day. Believe me.
    Today its been exactly 8 months since I lost my baby. Seems like eternity but really I have gone from being almost brittle like glass to steel nowadays.
    Hugs to u.

  9. Hey Vidhi..You are a darling. Its unfortunate we share a common sorrow. Hugs to you too and I really wish something works out for you. Yes, becoming steel - that's a good way to put oneself on the defensive..because its so easy to get hurt otherwise and in the real bad world nobody cares - except your close family/friends and the ones who are in the same boat like you.