Pregnancy: it’s a bad deal

My brain was blank as I stared at the pregnancy test at the bathroom at my work. I had some minor spotting a couple of weeks after the embryo transfer so in a panic I quickly went to the pharmacy to get the pregnancy test. I was advised not to take the test until my next appointment but the wait was unbearable. Everyone in the IVF community had the name for it – Two Week Wait or TWW. It felt like the longest two weeks of my life.

It was positive! Faint but positive.

As ecstatic as I was, the truth was that I didn’t really have a great pregnancy.

One unexpected discovery that I’ve found was that pregnancy and marriage is a really bad deal for women.ย The more pregnant I was the more heavy this felt.

Why? Because I was gone, and everything else was more important:

Tradition was apparently more important:

  • Baby’s surname: I was expected to use my husband’s surname and so was our baby. Where is me in my baby’s name? “Tradition” deemed that my surname wasn’t important enough to be there.
  • I wanted to use certain words in bub’s middle name but my parents had all kinds of crazy rules about this – it drove me crazy and so I dropped it completely.

I earned less so my career mattered less:

  • I earned a little less than my husband and therefore I would be the one to stop work and miss out possible work opportunities. I couldn’t help but feeling that I was going to be lagging behind. Work structure was built and ran by men so of course money and income was more important than parenting. Both parents having time off to look after a baby? Yea right. In New Zealand women get 16 weeks of paid maternity leave. Men get a pathetic 2-week-unpaid leave.

I wasn’t as important as my income:

  • I was about to purchase a hand bag when my husband said that I shouldn’t buy anything because “I” soon wouldn’t have an income. I felt as if I wasn’t making ย money then I was not equal in a relationship.

I disappeared:

  • People no longer saw “me” – they saw my baby only, like I wasn’t even there.
  • Sacrificing my body, career, money and time… under appreciated and if these things were just “expected” of me. This really pissed me off.

I fully realised that I was never equal in the relationship. Women already earned less than men in general and having to give up possible opportunities meant that I was even further behind.

These things weren’t exactly news but they really hit me hard this time.

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7 thoughts on “Pregnancy: it’s a bad deal

  1. I think these things always come with pregnancy, specially the first one. But after baby comes and you start settling into a routine you will rediscover yourself again and I surely hope you will feel more positive. Tell your husband to buy you that bag. You deserve it. You grow a human being inside you and this is harder than any job in the world so that bag belongs to you. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Wish you all the best

    Like

    1. Thank you very much for the kind words ๐Ÿ™‚ The pregnancy in a way exposed some of the different expectations we had – I used to think that the sort of (unconscious perhaps?) gender imbalance didn’t apply to my husband and I. We had to sit down and rehash how we could move forward from this point. I think we are making good progress since.

      Oh and I got the bag in the end! ๐Ÿ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Haha! Glad about the bag ๐Ÿ˜Š
        And happy about the progress. You know they say a baby can make you or brake you as a couple. Let the baby make you two. Only advice I can give you is always say what you feel (physically and mentally). He can’t know what you go through unless you tell him. I learned it the hard way and we both know men are not that great at reading about pregnancy ๐Ÿ˜‹

        Like

      2. I totally agree on the communication part! One time I actually yelled โ€œIโ€™m doing YOU a favour and NOT the other way roundโ€ to make a point LOL!

        May there be more bags to come! Hahaha!

        Liked by 1 person

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