I know your innocent question wasn’t meant to hurt me…

…but a sibling for my son will just never be possible

A guest post by Suzy from Our Bucket List Lives

I spent over 4 years of my life trying for a baby. Hearing people ask: when were we going to have a baby and wouldn’t we like to have a child? That was tough back then for many reasons. Now I hear different questions nearly every week, and they hurt just as much. Such as “Is Jamie your only child?” or “Are you going to have another?”. They are totally innocent questions but sadly they hurt just as much.

I think it’s so easy for people who have conceived easily and naturally to not think that these sorts of questions could really upset some people. To you they are innocent questions, perhaps a bit of friendly chatter. But to so many these sorts of questions can cut so deep and hurt so much.

I’m sadly one of them. I normally mutter something about “Yes he is the only one”; “He’s more than enough”; blah blah blah. But I’m screaming inside. “Yes he’s the only one and yes I would just love a sibling for my precious miracle. But you know what, he was a miracle, and I couldn’t risk my life again. I certainly couldn’t risk him losing his Mummy to give him a sibling.”

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We went through 4 rounds of IVF to conceive our precious boy. That’s quite enough for anyone to go through. To add to all this, I had an extremely complicated pregnancy, and I fell into the bracket of high risk when it was discovered that I had a placenta accreta.

Definition by Mayo Clinic Staff
“Placenta accreta is a serious pregnancy condition that occurs when blood vessels and other parts of the placenta grow too deeply into the uterine wall. Typically, the placenta detaches from the uterine wall after childbirth. With placenta accreta, part or all of the placenta remains firmly attached. This can cause severe blood loss after delivery. Placenta accreta is considered a high-risk pregnancy complication. If placenta accreta is suspected during pregnancy, you’ll likely need an early C-section delivery followed by the surgical removal of your uterus (hysterectomy).”

Scary stuff hey? But don’t worry; it happens in less than 1% of pregnancies. Yes, I was a rare “case”, and as the chances are super high that I’d get this again with another pregnancy, then the risks are just too much. You can’t really impart all this information to someone when they are asking you such innocent questions. Nor would I want to. Sadly, there’s so many women out there who have been through similar events. Not just having to have so many rounds of IVF for one baby, but who have gone through their pregnancy with such high risks that having another would just be impossible … and crazy!

So yes, I nearly died having Jamie. I lost a scary amount of blood and I was under general anaesthetic for 7 hours while they tried to make me well enough again. I didn’t meet our gorgeous son for 24 hours because I was so poorly, and the road to recovery was long and hard. The worst thing was that I never even saw my son come into this world because I was under anaesthetic. I wasn’t there for him when he needed me. 

The last 4 weeks of my pregnancy were spent away from home – either in hospital because I was bleeding or in a hotel nearby in case of an emergency, as they basically wouldn’t let me go home because we lived too far away. When Jamie was born, we were both in hospital for 10 days after because I was so poorly and because of the strict observations they had me under. 

This is why I could never give Jamie his much wanted sibling. I had always dreamed of having two kids. That’s how I lived my life. I have a brother 2 years younger than me and we played so much together when we were younger. I am ever aware that Jamie will never have this. Sad thing is, this isn’t just me and my story. There are thousands of stories out there. The couples who struggle to conceive at all and the couples who could never give their child a sibling.

In conclusion, I’m not saying you shouldn’t ask questions like this because, hey, it’s only human nature to be interested in others. Just take into account that perhaps for some people these questions could hurt more than you can imagine. We know you mean well.

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Please check out Suzy on social media:

Two Tiny Hands

Author: The Mum Reviews

Writing about women's health and wellness (especially for mums) as I try to stay sane in my crazy life.

17 thoughts on “I know your innocent question wasn’t meant to hurt me…”

  1. Thanks for sharing your story. I’m always really careful about asking questions like, “When are you having a baby?” to people, because you never know what their situation is. Maybe they’re trying for a baby and are struggling, maybe they’ve recently experienced a miscarriage, or maybe they just don’t want to have any kids. Regardless, I feel like it’s none of my business. #FamilyFun

    Liked by 2 people

  2. My sister lost her first baby and the doctor said she will be not able to has a second one but we have our little miracle! But probably she will hear the same question as you in the future why she doesn’t have a sister or brother for her daughter


    1. Argh sorry, I know a little of how you feel – it took such a long time to conceive out second and the questions were terrible xxx



  3. Oh gosh thank you for sharing this it must have been a hard post to write and publish. I am always really wary when asking these fort of questions for reasons you say but also because I am quite private and I don’t always want to share personal information and aaaume that others are like me. Although actually I suspect they are not. Still I don’t think it does any harm to be mindful when having these conversations. Thanks for sharing with us at #familyfun x

    Liked by 2 people

  4. This definitely will make me think twice over asking these questions and I admire that you’ve written this as it can’t have been the easiest but oh so important to make People aware that not all questions are always wanted. Thanks for linking up #familyfunlinky

    Liked by 2 people

  5. The most upsetting moment in 7 failed years trying to make a baby was the day we found out that close friends had not invited us to their first child’s christening because they thought it would make us too unhappy. No, I told them, being left out did that. It feels like a hundred years since then – about 20 years and two adopted boys lie in between – but it still irks me. We didn’t see them much after that. There were certainly many accidentally insensitive questions during our infertile years, and far more when our adoptions were under way and the boys newly with us. We found two things very helpful. The first was to talk very openly to our friends so that we weren’t alone (clearly wasted on *those* friends). And for those less close, we found the best way to defuse or stop questions was to give them more information than they wanted earlier than they would expect. ‘Gosh! Your son doesn’t look anything like you. Who did he get that hair from?’ ‘One of his parents, I should think.’ I know, smartarse, but fun. I guess it’s no help if you’re a very private person, but we certainly found sharing too much was a fabulous way to show others that they need to think a little harder before they ask.


    1. I’m so sorry that you experienced that exclusion. They definitely should have just asked you how you felt about it if you were close friends. It’s not like their baby was a secret! I too enjoy oversharing but it’s not a popular thing to do in this country.


  6. Mind you … lazy writing alert. It clearly wasn’t the most upsetting moment in 7 years of infertility. Could fill a book with those – though 20 years has removed their sting. Oversharing rules!


  7. When I was younger, I was unconscious and inexperienced in relation to that subject, I inosently believed that it was a natural condition of every married woman … but the truth is that it is not so, at first if the woman, or rather, the marriage partner Decides whether or not to have children … there are many reasons why a couple of spouses choose not to have children, besides it is a question of respect for privacy.

    Liked by 1 person

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