So friends, I decided to take the bull by the horns and I wrote to my BIL this evening. Mr. JB let me read some of the e-mails that my BIL wrote and when I was finished I was crying angry tears (I hate that, I wish that I could just be angry, but I'm wired to cry when I'm upset).
Below is my response, please let me know what you think.
Btw, he made quite the dig at my blog friends. He said something to the effect that I prefer to talk to strangers on the internet than family about our IF. He obviously doesn't get what the IF community is like!
p.s. If you missed what started all of this hullabaloo go back to this post.
Although Mr. JB and I decided early in our relationship that we would deal with our respective families, I cannot but get involved in the current discussion that you two are having.
Firstly, I am sorry that we didn't send you a Christmas card. It was an oversight on my part as well. I was trying feverishly to get everything prepared for Christmas before my laser eye surgery that I just plain forgot. Not a great excuse, but the truth nonetheless.
As for the current discussion that you are having with Mr. JB I cannot help but feel attacked. From the very first message that you sent to Mr. JB before the new year, I can see that I am at the root of many of the criticisms that you have. I realize that Mr. JB has defended me in all the ways that he can, but I feel like I need to take up my own cause.
I know that Mr. JB has said that there is nothing to worry about in regards to our marriage which is the God's honest truth. Your concerns about the "cone of silence" that I have placed around my infertility is something that I find quite upsetting.
For an infertile woman I live, breathe, dream and write about it on a constant basis. I have a wonderful support structure that I have found -- in person and on the internet -- that has gotten me through the past five years of my life. What it boils down to is that I don't talk about it with a lot of people because I don't want to. Sometimes I would like to pretend that my life is normal -- I know that may not be the healthiest way to lead my life, but after years of therapy, I know how to navigate through my sadness and this is the way that I choose to do it. I am sorry that it offends you that I cannot strike up a conversation about it or even mention in conversation how difficult it is, but I do not want my infertility to be the ONLY THING that people talk about. I don't want pity, that is the last thing that I want, but I don't want to be the topic of conversation either. I do belong to a support group in Toronto that meets on a regular basis and I have thought about seeing a therapist again, but I don't feel like I am in that sort of need. I have been depressed, I have been on anti-depressants. I can identify whether or not I need to seek professional help and I will not hesitate to do so if need be.
I don't believe that I have ever stopped you from asking me questions or bringing up the topic, but I know that I don't bring it up in regular conversation. I would never walk into a room and introduce myself as "infertile JellyBelly" nor would anyone expect me to. This may make me a weak person on the inside, but this is who I am. I have never pretended to be anyone else besides the person that I present myself to be. I am definitely not that good of an actress.
I wish that if you had these concerns BIL that you would have brought them up when you were home. I know that I had a ridiculously busy summer, but so many of these issues should have been dealt with before you left for Rome. The last thing I thought I would ever be is angry with you, which I am at this point.
I have tried my best to be the best wife possible for your brother and it hurts me to my very core that you would think otherwise. Unfortunately, this is who I am and how I choose to lead my existence and despite the hardships that we have faced as a couple, we lead a very happy life.
I don't want to open up a long debate with you, but I think that you need look at what is going on in your life before you assume what is going on in ours.