Judge and Jury

When I was attending my support group meetings last year one of the themes that came up a few times was the idea that our losses made us more understanding and sensitive to others who are struggling. Not necessarily with pregnancy losses or fertility, but any struggles. And I would agree that these experiences have really opened my eyes to recurrent pregnancy loss, fertility, etc. I never even knew that IUI’s existed a year ago. I knew that IVF existed, but not FET. I didn’t realize how expensive it was or the commitment that went into monitoring appointments, doctors appointments, medications, shots, etc. So I would 100% agree that my losses have put me on a path where I became more knowledgeable about infertility, more empathetic to those who have miscarried, more aware of just how many people suffer with infertility, more understanding of their journeys.

But (and there is always a but, eh?) I have also become very judgmental about some people in my life and about people’s choices in general.

For instance, a second cousin of mine recently got engaged. She has three children, by two different fathers, and had her first when she was young (19 or 20). And my grandmother announced it today like I was supposed to be very excited about this development. I haven’t seen her since I was in middle school, she lives in Florida, and I hadn’t really given her much thought in years. My response was that I hope she didn’t wear white on her wedding day since that ship has obviously sailed. And that I didn’t like her when we were children, I probably wouldn’t like her as an adult, and I couldn’t care less. Isn’t that just really awful?

Another example is my cousin A. She is pregnant with her second child, meanwhile her husband (whom I can’t stand) wants to uproot their family to Texas or Illinois so he can go BACK to school (note: it took him over four years to finish his undergraduate degree and my cousin financially supported the two of them while he went to school full time). My aunt is the primary caregiver of their daughter (my aunt quit her own job to raise this kid because my cousin couldn’t afford to support their bills & daycare) and is/was presumably going to be the caregiver of their second spawn. So this self centered dolt thinks it’s fair to uproot his family, go back to school full time and live on the one salary again. When this all came out at a family dinner (the cousin/aunt involved weren’t there as they live hundreds of miles away) I didn’t hesitate to say exactly what I thought about her choice in husband and what I thought about their decision to have another child with all this other business going on, and told my grandmother she should be thankful that at least one of her granddaughters has some common sense (which isn’t fair, because my other cousin K seems to have common sense.)

And don’t get me started on the drug users, and welfare abusers, and high school dropouts, and people who fake disability, and people who get pregnant while having affairs (I know people who fit into each of these categories.)

So while I think my losses have made me more compassionate in some respects, in others I think I have become more rigid and judgmental. And really, I have no reason to be like this. I’m not perfect, I’ve made mistakes, and it’s none of my business. I know all of this. But some days I can’t help it. Some days all I can think of are the reasons why it shouldn’t be them and why it should be me. And then I feel like THIS MUST BE WHY  I haven’t had my healthy baby. It must be because I am a judgmental ungrateful person, and I will never have my family until I stop these thoughts.

Most of the time I can control it and I’ve tried to stop it altogether but some days it is really really hard.

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20 Responses to Judge and Jury

  1. I so get every word you wrote here! Yes, I am much more empathetic to those going through anything infertility and/or miscarriage related. But, I am not supportive of many other things, and in many ways I am less supportive or compassionate now. This is all so frustrating sometimes!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. kawhipp says:

    This speaks to me so much. I totally am both more judgmental and more compassionate since Sam died.

    But I will tell you that there is NO WAY these feelings have anything to do with your babies. It is not your fault, love.

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks dear <3. I know in my head that the feelings had no impact on my babies, but sometimes that little voice inside me wants to have its say. I will drown it in Reese's Peanut Butter Cup eggs today 🙂
      And, I know we don't see each other often, but I think you have been a great support and compassionate to me with these struggles – your emails and just knowing I can reach to you if I need to. Our losses aren't the same but the feelings resulting from them can be very similar. xxx.

      Like

  3. mamaetmaman says:

    I think it’s really hard to empathize with others when you’re dealing with so much yourself. Especially with infertility and RPL, which are invisible struggles, you’re often suffering alone. I can totally relate to this post, and I don’t think you’re a bad person for feeling the way that you do.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for your support… it’s nice to know there are people out there who get these feelings and listen (or read in this case!) with open hearts and open minds.
      I hope you are feeling okay and things are going well for you. Hugs.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I am sorry you’re struggling with this dichotomy. Of course you know that your thoughts have not caused the loss of your two children or struggle with fertility. But grief is not always rational. Please have compassion with yourself.

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  5. I think EXACTLY the same. I am so judgemental. I teach in a very deprived area and the choices the parents make for their children don’t bear thinking about…yet they have 4, 5, 6 kids, up to 11 kids in one case, yet can’t even look after them, keep them clean, and I always think why THEY get the baby(ies!) and never me. I was at my supermarket the other day; a young girl, maybe 16, 17 in front. Hair unwashed, very unkempt, didn’t smell very pleasant. Standing with one item: pregnancy test. Of COURSE the universe will bless this unkempt, unwashed kid with a kid, or the family who need two social workers to get their kids to school on time because mum can’t be bothered, or the family who doesn’t even feed their kids properly… But not me, not my husband.

    I understand. That might not help, but please know you’re not alone. IF and loss changes our tolerance levels, I think. So long as your treatment of people isn’t unkind, then judging inside isn’t so harmful to them; it actually hurts US more, I think.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for your words and support. Luckily I am able to (usually) rein in these feelings and keep them inside – from the outside I’m fine, and on the inside it burns me up. So yes, perhaps it is hurting me more! I guess the same could be true for any number of people dealing with any kind of grief.
      The situations you described seem really heartbreaking. Wishing you lots of strength as you deal with it every day. xxx.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Wifey says:

    I feel like this a lot. Like my cranky, judgmental attitude are not helping me get my happy ending. Like they somehow keep me from deserving it. But, like you said, no one is perfect and everyone has faults. So, our imperfections are not keeping us from getting a happy ending. And, we do deserve one! I just don’t want my bad attitude to keep me from enjoying life in the meantime. I’m still a work in progress I guess. Hugs to you!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I just posted a similar blog today about empathy. The world would be a better place with more of it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I agree. As one of the commenters noted above, we are all works in progress and doing the best we can with our circumstances. Hopefully we will move towards more compassion and more empathy – if only all people had that goal. Thanks for stopping by.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. G E says:

    I couldn’t agree more. I am more understanding and compassionate in many ways, but in others I am so much less so and have so little tolerance for people who, say, complain about their baby’s birth, complain about being pregnant, etc. It is so hard to not feel that way when you have experienced terrible challenges and losses that others cannot even imagine.

    Liked by 1 person

    • First, thank you for your comment and understanding. Sometimes it makes me feel like a bad, being too judgmental, but after what has happened the past year I don’t know how certain things could NOT bother me. Second, so good to hear from you. 🙂 I think of you and B often and hope you are doing well.

      Like

  9. Pingback: Two Years | Sweeping Up the Broken Pieces

  10. Pingback: Judging the D-Word | Sweeping Up the Broken Pieces

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