two uteri, two mamas pregnant, AGAIN, with baby number two

8 DPO, and Lots to Talk About August 12, 2006

Filed under: Uncategorized — charlotte @ 7:42 am

We went for a fantabulous trip to a River with friends over the last few days. I feel renewed on all fronts. Now, back to the TTC junk.

I am learning a lot about myself and us in this process, on 8 days past ovulation.

I think we will test on 10 or 11 DPO. S wants to wait until 11+ DPO. We disagree and must reach a consensus.

We already purchased (well, I purchased) an Answer Early Result Pregnancy Test Box. Yes, I have read the enclosed pamphlet not once but thrice, and I love the pic of the lady peeing on the stick whilst standing up – good times.

It says that the test detects hCG in 69% of women 4 days before expected period, in 83% of women 3 days before expected period and 93% of women 2 days before expected period. What that means to us is 10 DPO (Tues), 11 DPO (Wed) and 12 DPO (Thurs), respectively. I want Tuesday, S wants Wednesday or Thursday.

This may appear to be a boring list of numbers and days, and a boring and stupid discussion about what day we should test on, but in fact it is not. The discussion is about our roles as parents, our feelings about motherhood, disappointment, life, the unknown, karma, jinxes and money. For tha realz.

For me, seeing a negative is not super shitty (yet, at least) so I want to test early, but for S it feels really bad to see a negative. If it were me, I would be peeing on stuff right now. In fact when it was me I started POAS at 7 DPO, like a crazy pee person.

But ladies, I better get used to the fact that it isn’t me. Not my body. Not my pee. It is so strange to experience this process again, without my body involved AT ALL. I am not going to pee on anything, get pregnant, grow a baby, give birth, breastfeed.

It is S’s turn. Her body. Sometimes in my darker moments I’m also afraid it will be her baby.

My mom just bought me the book, “Confessions of the Other Mother,” by Harlyn Aisley. I read a few stories (each from a different lesbian couple), and they were simultaneously validating and a bit depressing. Sometimes I want to know that other people are jealous and crazy too, but this time it just seemed to confirm that I am in a difficult situation, moving from bio-mom to non-bio-mom.

So you see, the POAS issue is really quite a deep and complex topic for us.

What do y’all think? When did you test? How do you feel about the being the bio or non bio mom? (BTW, is there a better word than non-bio mom or ‘other mother’? Because there is a difference. Those of you lesbians not yet in this situation may not know that there really are differences in the roles. I want a better name, one that does not have ‘non’ in the title.)


17 Responses to “8 DPO, and Lots to Talk About”

  1. M. Says:

    I just read Confessions of the Other Mother, too. It’s a hard call. The language feels really lacking. I wish I had something to offer you besides empathy on this.

  2. Sacha Says:

    I would hold off until day 12 to test. Wait until you’re late. Getting a nice strong positive is so much better than angsting over some faint ghost of a line. And just because the test says it will detect X days before your period doesn’t mean it will work that way for S.

    What a freakin’ crap shoot.

    There were waits where I would have never tested and just waited for my period. That’s how much I hated getting the negative (and how much I hated the money those damn pee sticks cost).

  3. mermaidgrrrl Says:

    I’m not anti-negative tests, so I start esting at day 10. I’m not sure what I’d do if my partner didn’t want to start testing when I did. Steal some pee and do it in secret?

  4. Tamsin Says:

    I think that as it’s S’s body this time, you have to give her the final say on this one, particularly if she’s likely to not cope well with seeing negatives.
    My viewpoint on early testing changed dramatically, the longer it took us to ttc. I never would have tested before 10dpo, but the fact that my LP is usually no longer than 12-13 days meant that early on, I felt cheated out of testing if I didn’t test “early”. However, I just found it so hard to remain positive after we’d got a negative test (and of course, there never actually was any reason to be positive for any of those cycles for us). So, the last few goes, we just waited for my period to turn up. We did decide to test 1 day before official test date on the IVF cycle, because there was so much more riding on it (and were amazed to finally get that magical second line).

  5. Tamsin Says:

    On the bio/non-bio mother issue, some of my friends use co-mother as a term (I agree, don’t want a negative in there). My partner considers herself an equal parent, but not a mother, so we will be referring to her as the co-parent we think (v. tricky though, as it would certainly be a lot easier, for me at least, to say “K is (pip’s) other mother”).

    Although I’m the bio mother-to-be, I know that K has had many worries about being excluded/thought of as a lesser parent because she has no biological connection. That’s by me, as well as by family/friends/outside world in general. Her biggest worry is that I will want to bond so closely with the child that she will be shut out. I can see why she thinks that, as I do have a somewhat obsessive personality and often prefer to just get on with myself rather than letting others help, especially when I’m stressed. However, I’m hoping that because it’s something that we are both already aware of, we’ll be able to combat the situation, should it arise. Overall though, because this is our baby that I’m growing, not just mine, I really don’t think that it will be a problem.

    I know that there will be differences though – we already know that I will be the “food” mummy and primary care-giver, while K will be the “fun” mummy (and I’m certainly aware of how other people differentiate between the bio and co-mother, from seeing lesbian friends who are parents). I even know of lesbian parents who have asked another lesbian couple “so, whose baby is it?”!!!!!

    What did/does S feel about being co-mother last time around/bio-mother this time? Did she have the same worries that you now have?

  6. Trista Says:

    When we decided that Kristin would be the one to get pregnant first, I had a very difficult time. I had always seen myself as being the first bio mom. I had so many fears, so many jealousies. I stayed pretty hands off with her pregnancy, I had to. It was driving me nuts that she was getting pregnant and I wasn’t. In fact, her entire pregnancy felt like a loss to me — and I spent the greatest part of it feeling like a shit for feeling that way. I was worried that I wouldn’t bond with the baby, that my position in the baby’s life would always be tenuous and on sufferance.

    For us, there really isn’t a difference in our roles, though. Honestly, I think that was because Kristin couldn’t breastfeed. Those two weeks that she was determined to breastfeed were miserable for me. Mostly because I could see that our baby was starving, but I wasn’t allowed to do anything for her. My instincts, my knowledge were being pushed aside in favor of the bio mom’s and I felt as if I were merely a bystander, and not a mother. But now there are no differences in roles, only differences in parenting styles.

    One question for you… you’re still nursing LM, right? Have you considered continuing to nurse him and/or pumping to keep your supply flowing so that you could co-nurse the next baby?

    As for testing. Speaking as a non-bio mom (yes, I HATE that term) moving into being a bio mom, I feel anxious about my body’s abilities and yet at the same time, wanting to let my body unfold and work the way it works. I am on guard about Kristin projecting her body’s experience and rhythms onto mine. The two times I have let Kristin talk me into testing earlier than I wanted to were incredibly hard for me. Yes, it would have been negative in either case. But to see that negative before I was ready for it… and then to have the whisper of hope keep going “maybe I’m one of the 40% that it doesn’t work for on this day…” only to have to test again and possibly get a negative again… That first negative might be difficult, too, since you conceived on the first try…

    Even though it’s hard, I’d let S choose when to pee on a stick. But make sure she does it when you’re there so you can both stare at it together.

    Oh, this comment was too long and very disorganized. Email me if you want something more coherent…

  7. Sacha Says:

    goodness, what Trista said!

  8. Co Says:

    We haven’t done our first insem yet, but I’ll echo Tamsin and others about the POAS decision. It’s S’s body so it should be her call.

    So excited for you two now that you’re in the game, though! 🙂

  9. charlotte Says:

    your posts are never ever too long, and you are never disorganized…and I always appreciate your wisdom.

    I read your blog about this and I think that it is important for me to weigh my need to know anxiety, with S’s real sense of shittiness and hoplessness seeing the neg. So thank you for that.

    BTW I am so exciting for you both!!
    To answer your question, S feels really good about moving forward as the bio-mom…I think it is an easier transition than mine. She does not have a whole lot of fear around it becuase having a child is charted territory for us.

    To All,
    I think you are right that it needs to be her POAS decision. And that may mean waiting until Thursday even. BALLS!!

    I just need to get used to the caretaker role, and the magnanimous, “honey I will defer to you” stuff. It’s just not our usual MO.

  10. amy Says:

    i think like anything in the relationship, you negotiate when to test. both my partner and i are as equal moms as is possible to our little angel. the only exception is that i breast feed but my partner doesn’t seem to have any issues at all with our roles. i think b/c our donor was her clone and actually our daughter looks more like her than me, may help. when we’re out together, people always address her as the mommy, which i’m sure makes her feel great and i’m totally fine with it.

  11. bri Says:

    I know I’m not the typical demographic here, since the Penguin has a daddy instead of two mommies, but we’re also different in that daddy has already been a bio mommy. So…

    He was hands-off about my decisions to test early and often. For me, I needed the slow let-down of those Internet cheapies glaring at me. If I had been buying expensive ones and testing from 9dpo on, I would have gotten a firm talking-to. As it was only .80 a day, it was my call. I knew he thought it was silly, but he still supported me and talked me through it when I cried/pouted each morning.

    He was suddenly very invested in the tests during those 3 days that led up to our positive beta, though. He got all insistent about when I should test and all interested in comparing the lines. And actually asked me to test again one afternoon. At that point I was obviously happy to oblige since there was Hope.

    I agree with the general consensus that the one peeing gets to decide for the most part. If she feels able to compromise a little, great. If not, I think you are a little out of luck for the moment.

    I also wanted to echo Trista in saying that I find it frustrating when Wes talks about his pregnancy (I know, gender weird pronoun issues there) and tells me about what such and such was like for him and how perfect GMB was in every way in babyhood (HA! Not even true!). I get very bitter because not only is he a super health freak with excellent muscles for baby-pushing and such, he was fricking 19 YEARS OLD and that is just so not the same as being a 31 year old asthmatic fibromyalgic terrified of childbirth. Fortunately, the fact that it was nearly 16 years ago helps – he doesn’t remember it all so clearly.

  12. J-Le Says:

    usually i start weeing on sticks as soon as i can. but this month i didn’t feel the urge. i think that’s because the longer it takes us to conceive, the less i believe i might be pregnant each month.
    having said all that, today is 11 DPO and a couple of hours ago i decided i wanted to test and made myself come online and cruise blogs in order to distract myself from weeing on sticks too early. and the topic that i’ve stumbled across as i cruise is this very vexed dilemma!
    aaaaarrrrrgh, the irony!

  13. Calliope Says:

    so um…any peeing going on over there?

  14. Gandksmom Says:

    New here….and hoping that you get that +. As for being the bio or non bio mother, I don’t think I could have handeled being the non bio mother. I want all the attention! You are a good woman! Anyway, I think I will stick around and get to know you all. BTW – I pee’d on sticks from 10DPO every single cycle.

  15. Clare Says:

    gosh I feel completely validated by this. I am in exactly the same position the non-mother and I feel some completely weird about it. We had all sorts of strong conversations last week around the timing of testing wee vs blood it went on and on.

    Now we know the answer and it is positive it is completely and utterly amazing and the depth of my pleasedness for Gaye is stronger than I can even explain or than I could have imagined.

    But I also feel lost, what is my role? I am not the carrying one (and last time I was) and although I was able to hand over lots of decisions (it is your body you must do what is right for you) some things have suddenly taken on an enormous importance to me (like who we tell, what we tell them and when we tell them)that having myself heard in these decision is really important.

    Finding the balance is the key – I just can’t find it

  16. Clare Says:

    Thanks Charlotte, I have indeed gone into more depth on my blog about the bio/non-bio gig. Thou I may incur the wrath of the mother police!

  17. ~ danielle Says:

    coming in late on this… but I use the term “vessel” and we’ve also used the terms “milk mom” and “adventure mom” (since I was the milk mom with Bub and Heather is more adventurous and physical than I am, so she was the adventure mom).

    Heather’s pregnancy was a huge awakening for me and I felt alot of the same things others have felt about not having any control, grief over not being the pregnant one, not getting to nurse, etc. (though I do nurse Ms. Baby on occassion). Ms. Baby just turned one yesterday and it still is hard for me sometimes, it certainly has opened my eyes as to what it must have been like (and is like) for her when it comes to our parenting Bub (whom I was the vessel for). I think it’s great that your talking about it and working through it (you nutty therpist type you 😉 not only for yourself and S, but also because it was great for me to know someone else struggles with the same stuff.

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