Take Hand. Smack Forehead. Repeat.

Mrs. X thinks she’s normally pretty savvy. She’s manuevered through the gauntlet of serious infertility treatments for over a year now and only twitches occasionally. Sure, she’s grown a third eye in her forehead from all of the hormones (kidding), but she has survived the slings and arrows of insurance issues, repeated encounters with the speculum, and butt shots. But for all her savvy, her moxie and yes, her hard-won infertility wisdom, she has not absorbed one simple, yet elegant lesson:

Do not under any circumstances share your infertility details with your next door neighbor.

When we moved into this house a few years ago, I was not here for more than three hours when she came over and introduced herself while trying to find out how much we paid for the house. Nice. Back then, we were still in the honeymoon phase of trying meaning we hadn’t figured out that something was wrong and it was just a matter of time before I would be sporting a pooch. Back then, I still told people that we were trying – although I don’t remember if she found out because she asked if we had kids. That would be the most likely scenario.

Anywho, she has a mind like a steel trap and has asked for updates as the months (and now years) have gone by. She knew about our IF treatments and about my miscarriage and was very nice. I have been avoiding her ever since my miscarriage because I knew she would ask whether things had gotten back on track. Well, last weekend, she cornered me and in her oh, so point blank manner asked how “things” were going. There was no point in playing dumb and I told her that we were doing IVF. She oohed and aahed and vaguely mentioned wanting more details. Luckily, she had to go before she could extract the details.

Today, I took over some cake because they helped us out last weekend on some stuff and of course, I had to spill the beans.

Nosy Neighbor: So, tell me how things went!
Me: Fine. (blah, blah, details, details). We had the transfer on Friday.
Nosy Neighbor: So they’re in you right now?!
Me. Um. Yea.
Nosy Neighbor: You’re with child? You’re with embryo?
Me: [seriously uncomfortable now, making non-committal noises]. Uh.
Nosy Neighbor: When do you find out?
Me: In two weeks (I fudged the date – no one knows except me and Sweetie).
Nosy Neighbor: Oh, I have to put it on my calendar!
Me: No! Don’t do that! I don’t want everyone in the universe tracking the date. [She thankfully steps away from her calendar]
Nosy Neighbor: I hope you have twins. I can’t wait till my kids have grandchildren and then I can cuddle a baby and give it back.

WTF?! Ok, I will try to have twins just for you because you requested. Any other requests? Boy/girl twins? Girl/girl? Triplets, perhaps? Do you have any names you would like to request now before the list gets started? Un-freakin’-believable.

I was able to impose the “don’t call me, I’ll call you” rule on the results. If it is negative, the last thing I need is to have her calling me and me having to repeat it.

She also told me that the neighbors up the street (the wife is a teacher at the local school) are going to start trying next month. I have no doubt that she got this intelligence straight from the wife’s mouth, probably through some form of interrogation. I will not try to dwell on the fact that they will likely get pregnant pretty easily with few problems and sail through. I will try to be thankful that the wife may siphon some of Nosy Neighbor’s attention from away from me. I won’t swing by and warn the wife that she’s guaranteed herself requests for monthly updates on the state of her uterus.

Nope, I will just practice learning how not to share with her. Either that, or I will declare that I have decided to stop seeing people and to become a hermit. I don’t think she’ll accept either. image: aynne

9 thoughts on “Take Hand. Smack Forehead. Repeat.

  1. i hate misguided supportiveness. my best friends tries, but misses the mark almost every time (it also doesn’t help that she got pregnant on the first try TWICE!!!!).

    my parents don’t know and will probably never know. it’s our business, right?

    we could always kidnap her….

  2. UGH! How is it some people can be so incredibly obtuse!? I suppose you’re too well situated to move, but boy that’s where my head would be if this woman was my neighbor. Hopefully she’ll find some other distraction …

  3. I wish there was a way to check whether you’re compatible with the neighbours before you move in. When dh & I bought our house, the family next door had two little boys, which eventually expanded TWICE more with another boy & finally a girl. They were nice enough, but we really had nothing in common with them — our relationship was mostly just saying hello & maybe a brief chat as we came & went, & mowed the grass & raked the leaves. They were always asking us about when we were having kids. I would just vaguely reply, “Oh, one of these days…” & change the subject. The husband would pick up one of the kids & say stuff like, “Wouldn’t you just love to have one of these?” UGH. They moved to a larger house nearby just before I got pregnant. That Halloween — post-August stillbirth for me — the mom brought the kids around the old neighbourhood for trick or treating, & called to me from the sidewalk, “So I hear you were pregnant — I hear you lost the baby.” Yes, and thank you very much for announcing it to the entire neighbourhood…!!

    Which is a long way of saying that some people are just totally clueless, & I share your feelings. (((hugs)))

  4. NNeighbor is clearly not interested in you as a person and is living vicariously through those around her. So you’re right to cut her off. No more cakes!

    Though it’s so exhausting to avoid people. Why can’t they just leave us alone?

  5. Oh please, please, pretty please try to have twins for her!!! With a cherry on top!

    I mean seriously, who do these people think they are! My neighbor across the street was like that, I mean seriously for a little while thought you and I might be neighbors because we have the same neighbor!

    Please like that just don’t understand!

  6. You don’t have to avoid her, just tearfully tell her that it causes you pain to discuss any further details and that you just knew she’d understand and you’d much rather talk about HER.

  7. Thank you so much for your kind comment on my blog.

    I am sorry to hear about your nosy neighbour – does she have nothing better to do with her time than to poke her nose into other people’s hoohas?!?

  8. Thanks, ladies. I love my house, so moving isn’t an option. They actually have been talking about moving almost since we moved in, but so far, it’s just talk.

    loribeth- I’m so sorry. It sounds like you have an even more insensitive neighbor than I do.

    I’m going to try to mention something to my other neighbor who has been through infertility that if she can talk this one down from stalking me and my details, that would be great. I obviously won’t use the word “stalking” but, I have no doubt she’ll get the message.

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