A wanna-be mother sent a letter to the Slate columnist for manners and morals, “Dear Prudence”.
The woman and her husband were planning to start their family but then her sister-in-law suffered a miscarriage. She writes it’s the perfect time for them to begin to try to conceive but she doesn’t want to hurt her sister-in-law’s feelings by getting pregnant. She asks if there is a “conception etiquette”?
I actually think this type of situation happens pretty often. Siblings are frequently of child-bearing age around the same time, hence babies being conceived and born around the same time. I definitely think there can be jealousy and hurt feelings when one is successful and other has a problem, or when one sibling steps on the other’s announcement.
One of the things that struck me the most about Prudence’s answer is she points out that because a lot of woman get a year focused on them when it’s their time to be the bride they expect the same when they have a baby. And she feels like that shouldn’t be expected.
I disagree. I think an expectant mother should expect to feel pampered and special while she is pregnant. That is a very special time and it takes a lot of physical and mental preparation to become a mother.
I do, however, agree with Prudence that it’s just tough stuff if your sibling or sister-in-law is pregnant at the same time. I don’t think anyone should plan their fertility around someone else’s schedule or hurt feelings – it’s too hard to get pregnant to take that into account. (I would however hold off until you were Jennifer-Lopez size telling a friend who miscarried that you were pregnant.)
What do you think? Have you experienced hurt feelings, jealousy or wondered about changing your conception time based on what a family or friend was experiencing? Is there a conception etiquette? Should there be one?