July 07, 2022 - 3 min read
July 07, 2022
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How to Reach Out to a Friend Who is Growing Their Family

It’s hard to know the right thing to say in a sensitive situation even if you have the best intentions.

Those moments where you want to be a good friend, show you care, but you’re worried about saying the wrong thing. Countless times I have wanted to text a friend who was trying to conceive, not sure if they were pregnant yet or still waiting for that special news, but I hesitated due to my lack of confidence in saying the right thing. Weeks would go by with this person in the back of my mind, but they didn’t know it because I didn’t reach out.

I was stuck between thoughts of whether it was more important to say something, anything, even if it wasn’t the “right” thing, or if it was better to give that person their space, even if that space would turn into a distance between friends and unspoken words as a consequence of my insecurity.

Most people post on social media or reach out to friends when something “good” happens, to receive congratulations and support.

But we forget about the silent ones. The ones who could use a friend without asking for it. The ones who need someone to show they care with a simple text, call, or gentle reminder that they aren’t alone.

So, how do you reach out to show you care without saying something that could offend or upset someone? How do you find that narrow alleyway between right and wrong that leads you to the road of balanced compassion?

“People will forget what you said,

people will forget what you did,

but people will never forget

how you made them feel.”

-Maya Angelou

Ideas of How to Reach Out

To a friend who is trying to conceive (TTC)

These aren’t questions about their specific journey, you’re just reaching out to a friend to catch up. This can take the pressure off and open the door in case they want to share:

“How are you?”

“How is work going?”

“Did you see that episode of [insert TV show] last night?” 

“Let’s meet up and go for a walk!”

To a very close friend who is trying to conceive (TTC)

“How is your TTC journey going? It’s okay if you aren’t ready to share. I want you to know I’m always thinking of you and here to listen when you are ready to talk.” 

To a friend who is in the first trimester

If you know of any successful nausea remedies, share them! Bumpdate makes it easy to send a few items that worked for you (Lozenges, tea, essential oils, sea bands, etc.). Also consider offering words of congratulations (Mail a card, send flowers or a small baby gift to get them excited – onesies, new parent books, etc.).

“How are you feeling?”

“How is the nausea?”

“Can I come over to watch a movie with you?”

To a friend who is in the second trimester

This is when the anatomy scan happens! A “Good luck at your appointment” text goes a long way. Comment on any and all social media posts/announcements. Cheer them on!

“How are you feeling?”

“Are you feeling any kicks/flutters?”

“Do you want to go to lunch or for a walk together?”

To a friend who is in the third trimester

Send a “Thinking of you!” text. Browse their baby registry/send the link around to mutual friends. Your friend is in the home stretch!

“How’s the baby room coming along?”

“Do you need anything?”

“How are you feeling?”

To a friend who just had a baby

Send ready to go meals. Providing support when new parents (yes, even dads) are at the highest risk for postpartum anxiety and depression. Send texts like: “You are amazing!” “Welcome to the parenthood club!” “You guys are doing incredible”

“How are you feeling?”

“How is the baby doing? I can’t wait to meet him/her!”

To a friend who is in the thick of parenthood

Keep track of their birthdays and their kids’ birthdays. Make time to bond with their children.

“How is [insert child’s name] doing in school?”

“How are you doing?”

“Can I come over and help with dinner one night?”

“I’m going to the grocery store, can I pick anything up for you?”

To a friend grieving a loss

Be there for your friends during their darkest times.

What messages or supportive gestures did you receive while on your journey that were you grateful for? Add them in the comments!

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Written by

Image of Tyler Sylk

Tyler Sylk

@tylersylk

Tyler is the Creative Director at Bumpdate. She is a first time mother with a passion for creative writing and personal connection. With a Master’s Degree in Public Health and over 10 years working in hospital settings, Tyler focuses her energy on helping those around her and empowering them to use their voice. She believes we can all learn from each other if we take the time to listen.

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