How To Feel Sincere Happiness For Others When You’re Still Struggling

It's tough to see pictures of pregnant bellies when your dreams of motherhood aren't coming true. Here's what I've learned about coping.

Meghan Rivard September 18, 2017
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How do I feel and express happiness for others around me that have something that I want?

This is a hard question with not an easy answer. It is often a struggle for me.

From the time I was a little girl, I wanted to be a mom. Throughout high school, friends told me they could see me as a soccer mom with a minivan full of kids.

But life does not always cooperate in the way we plan and I am not able to biologically have children.

But I have a husband that is loving and completely open to adoption.  We were selected by two birth parents to adopt their baby girl, and we now have a beautiful 4-year-old daughter. She is a miracle and we love her beyond comprehension.

But I’ll be honest. I still occasionally still have a hard time seeing women with pregnant bellies or people posting pregnancy pictures on social media all of the time.

So how do you work through “jealously” and sincerely feel happy for your pregnant friends?  For me, it was and still is a work in progress, but here are two principles that have helped me out.

Gratitude

I think it is okay to have a “pity moment,” but only for a moment. Acknowledge and honor your grief –  and then focus on the many positive things in your life. Gratitude has been scientifically proven to change your brain and improve your life.

Gain Perspective

Recently, a family in our community almost lost their one-year-old when he stopped breathing and started having seizures. He was in the hospital for several months and is doing much better now. However, watching their trials and seeing how they worked through them and grew stronger as a family was very eye-opening to me.  It made me realize how blessed my life has really been and I can choose to focus on the positives and not the negatives.

Ultimately what I’ve realized is this: Life is short and there’s not time to waste with self-pity.

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Meghan Rivard

Meghan is an adoptive mother and a big advocate of adoption and foster care. She resides in Indiana with her husband, their one-year-old daughter who is the center of their lives, and their dog Max. She has a Bachelor's and Master’s Degree in Social Work. Meghan stays at home with her daughter but is so happy she found this outlet to share her personal adoption story and educate about adoption!


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