“So when can we expect a baby?”
“Your child needs a little brother or sister! I hope you’re working on that!”
All year long, these questions and comments add salt to the open wound of couples trying to conceive their first or second or third child. Each comes with a different perspective of heartbreak and challenges. Holidays are difficult for these couples: adorable little boy Easter suits taunt them in stores, they long to post a picture of their little Princess at Halloween and once again, they pack away the little stocking they were hoping to give future grandparents on Christmas morning to announce the coming of a baby. Yet, there is one holiday that is often forgotten that cuts deep for these couples: April Fools’ Day.
Why does April Fools’ Day hurt couples trying to conceive?
Year after year, I hear about how this person or couple announces they are expecting, conveniently on April Fools’ Day. Surprise, surprise…this super original gag is just a hoax.
Every day women and men put on a happy face and hold back the tears with each new pregnancy announcement from family and friends. It is exhausting and tough work to genuinely be happy for their growing family and to push away feelings of jealousy and hopelessness. So to see and hear these pregnancy jokes at the beginning of spring, the time of new life, it minimizes the general heartbreak and feelings we all possess. That is not what couples trying to conceive need. We need to feel supported and see legitimate actions that help us on the wild ride trying to have a baby.
Do I think those who say or post online do it to intentionally hurt those who are struggling with infertility or miscarriages? No. They are doing it for instant shock value in hopes of tricking their family and friends, just like every other April Fools’ Day joke. When pranks hurt others in any capacity, it is not a laughing matter.
Here is your call to action to support your friends and family who are suffering with any form of infertility or miscarriage during April 1st: do not say or post you are “expecting” when you actually are not. If you are not saying or posting that message, I encourage you to kindly respond to those “jokesters” about the reality of these issues that so many couples face and inform them that what they are saying is not funny in any way.
And seriously…to those saying or posting this prank, think of something a little more original if you want to pull a big April Fools’ Joke.