Sunday, October 15, 2006


I've noticed lately that I seem to be in the minority among IFers on something - namely, disclosure to one's family about the details of IF treatments and (for the fortunate) pregnancy. Other people seem to involve their parents much earlier.

Now, we don't live in the same city as any of our parents. And our parents are WASPy - oh, very, very, WASPy. To give you an idea of how WASPy, my mother was visiting us in the spring and revealed in passing that she had just found a huge lump in her breast. She prefaced this revelation by saying, "I wouldn't even trouble you with this, but since I'm here...." (Her treatment, in case you're wondering, has gone well so far.)

My parents would never in a million years have asked us about our plans to have children or pressured us to do so, even though I'm sure they were dying to know (and my mother treats her cousins' grandchildren like her own). They learned about the basic infertility stuff when I was forced to disclose my laparoscopy to them because they were visiting for Thanksgiving a few days later and I wasn't sure how I'd be feeling. I probably would have told them about it anyway since it involved general anesthesia and that seems to kick the whole thing up a level in terms of gravity.

I didn't tell them anything about my first IVF because I didn't want to be beholden to reveal every occurrence. Also, my mother tends to tell everyone everything. For example, after I had my laparoscopy, I was visiting my parents for Christmas. My mother was throwing a birthday party for one of her friends, and this friend (whom I adore, but still) said, in front of the entire party, "So, they fixed you all up in there?" or something to that effect. Now, this friend's daughter did a bunch of IVFs and has two kids now, so I should have deduced that if I were hearing all the details about this woman's IVFs, then my mother was probably sharing all kinds of details in return.

My brother spilled the beans to our parents about IVF#2 because it affected some family travel plans. I confirmed that we had done one IVF and would be doing another, but I was intentionally vague on the details. And they've never asked. And my mother was undergoing chemo, surgery, etc., so it was easy to avoid this topic, although we did have one amusing conversation in which we compared assvice offered up to cancer patients and infertility patients.

So now, here I am, slogging through the first trimester, the end of which isn't too far off, and my parents have no idea. (My brother is in the know, however.) I'm trying to figure out when to tell them. After the next ultrasound? Or do I just wait to spring it on them dramatically in person at Thanksgiving?


Jane said...

I say wait and see how you feel after the next ultrasound. If everything looks great, you may be so excited that you want to tell the 'rents right away.

A dramatic Thanksgiving announcement would be fun, too, although if your WASPy parents are anything like mine, they'll offer you a drink the minute you walk in the door, and may be suspicious if you decline, thus ruining the big surprise.

My Reality said...

I think that a dramatic Thanksgiving announcement could be kind of fun, but that is still a month and a bit away. After your next ultrasound, you may want to tell them what is going on, especially if the HG doesn't let up quickly.

You will know when the right time is and hopefully, your brother won't spill the beans first!

Hopeful Mother said...

Yeah, we tried to keep my parents out of the whole IF whirlwind, but after our first failed cycle I didn't know if I could handle keeping the secret any longer. They handled it well. But, my parents, same as yours, would have never dreamed of asking if we hadn't brought it up (which is one of the things I love about them...!)

I guess I'd play it by ear as far as telling... depending on how you feel after the next ultrasound. Then if you are not ready, you can wait until TG.

I'm just SO glad you have something to tell!

p.s. I emailed about your leftover meds...

Anonymous said...

I have always had a thing for holidays and would love if one fell right for me to announce something like a pregnancy. That's just my two cents though. :)

Anonymous said...

If you can possibly stand it (and won't be showing too much by then), wait for Thanksgiving. Somehow I was able to keep my big mouth shut and tell my parents in person when they came to visit. Everything about it was priceless: the uncharacteristically dramatic way PK announced the news, the looks of shock and joy on my parents' faces, the way they jumped up from the table and cheered. I'm all for the big, dramatic reveal with immediate gratification.

bihari said...

I told my mother in person, because she came to visit two days after I got a positive test, and my father on the phone, because now my mother knew and I kind of had to spill. His silence and consequent spluttering were priceless. And I'm glad I got to see my mother's face when I told her about her first grandchild.

Whatever you decide, we will be awaiting a post about it!

Emmie said...

I think it's great that your parents haven't asked questions--boy would I trade that for all the questions I get! It's nice to be able to say things when you are ready. I think you'll figure out when the time is right to tell them, and I'm sure it will be very special!