While we were trying to conceive the message boards over at She Knows were my best friends. I actually still talk to many, many of those ladies to this day. Most of us have graduated from our journey and are parents now but the bonds we formed during that time will last a lifetime. I frequented the TTC #1 and the Cycle Buddies boards. The boards are much quieter now then when I was there but Cycle Buddies is still pretty active. Other boards tend to pick up as people keep posting. So why SK? Well for me I've tried other boards and the main issues I've run into is that many are too busy - you feel like you never get to know anyone there and that they can get pretty judgey. I haven't experienced that at SK - only support.
When you're trying to conceive and/or dealing with infertility it can get discouraging to turn to family and friends to support. They mean well but there's only so much of "If you just relax", "It'll happen when the time is right", "Have you tried..." that you can handle - having other ladies who are going through the same thing as you and having a safe place to vent is priceless. They even have private boards for the subjects you don't want everyone to be able to read. These boards are what convinced me to go to an RE, to leave that RE and to work with my doctor. I learned so much from these ladies and feel like an honorary aunt to all of their babies now!
Equally important is the support during pregnancy. At home, work, friends and on line. I was part of a Due Date board at SK with Jellybean and joined one again with Jujube. I originally tried going over to JustMommies but I felt like I got lost in the shuffle there. There was something like 80 ladies in that group. I also use my breastfeeding group on Facebook for support. I make sure Joey pitches in. Even when he doesn't feel like it. The biggest thing for me right now - If I'm with family and they want to do anything with Jellybean - go for a walk, play, etc. I let them. I don't care if it throws his nap off or messes up our schedule. It's a break for me and I need those right now.
When it comes to support it also means holding people accountable. Take this morning for instance. The alarm went off, it was cold outside and warm under the covers. Joey says to me - I think I'm going to stay home today and finish the bedroom. To which my immediate response was - I think not.
Because I have my NT scan on Friday along with bloodwork and a flu shot. When I scheduled it two weeks ago he agreed that he would go into work late that day so he could come with me to the appointment and watch Jellybean. Otherwise I have to leave early drive all the way to day care and then back track to get to the doctor's office. I was counting on him and this was the first time in two weeks he had mentioned not going to my appointment. Also - I have a budget. When he misses a day of work it blows our budget. I pointed all those things out to him (nicely) and said if he really wanted he could stay home on Friday. He got up and left for work. He may not have been happy about it but he did it.
If you don't have a support network in place as you're TTC or pregnant - find one. Look for message groups for pregnant women in your area, check with local hospitals to see if they have one, go to La Leche meetings, WIC also has meetings. RE offices usually have groups too. Don't be afraid to ask for help. If I need help getting my house in order I call my parents. Don't feel like a bitch for not committing to certain things. You have to take care of yourself and if you don't feel up to doing something then don't. It's okay.
What advice do you have for ladies TTC or pregnant? What was your best support during pregnancy?