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Background:

In the group of our old friends there are around 30 people. We were all born around the late ‘70s to mid ‘80s. I’m actually 38 and my wife is 33. Some of us are still single, some are now couples starting to build family with 1 to 2 children.

Me and my wife we had our first son 15 months ago and she’s now pregnant again. We are just crazy for him, and he is also somehow objectively beautiful, and we never made anything to hide our enthusiasm for such a blessing. In the group there are two brothers, they both are married and they don’t have children. Around 6 months ago I had a private speech with one of the two brothers, and he told me he and his wife have been trying for years to have a child too, but it seems they can’t. He also told me that his brother’s wife was pregnant around two years ago and she lost the baby. They’ll unlikely be able to have a child too. He also told me they both (couples) don’t feel comfortable at all about that missing piece in their life. I felt and showed him all the empathy I could, and I said “sorry if I said something in the past that might have hurt you or your wife”.

Hearing all that simply destroyed me. I went back to all the times when my wife and I just so naturally spoke with them about how beautiful parenting is, how beautiful our (all friend’s children in general) children are, how beautiful he is when he wakes me up in the morning even if I’m tired, etc. I’m sure I told them both publicly more than once “you should think about it, it’s the best thing you can do in your life”.

Afterward, I always felt very uncomfortable about all that and I was somehow trying to “limit my happiness in front of them”, sounds bad, I know.

Tomorrow we all (~30+ people) are gonna meet each other for 5 days vacation in a house we’ve rented all together for New Year.

I already told some of my closest friends that my wife is pregnant.

If there wasn’t such situation, I would cook dinner and buy wine for everybody the first evening and tell them the news during a toast.

But I don’t want to be heartless with the two brothers and their wives, they are my friends and I feel (probably unable to show ‘em, though) very empathetic for them both. I don’t want to hurt them, nor ruin their New Year, so, in such scenario:

How to tell my friends that my wife is pregnant again?

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I have childless friends, and know people who have miscarried. (And it turns out that miscarriage is actually common - it may be as high as one in 2 pregnancies.)

First of all, know that you cannot keep this a secret. They will find out. Either they'll hear it from someone else, or they'll see a new kid. Either way, this is news you'll have to give them, and I'm glad you recognize that.

As with any news that may be unpleasant to the hearer, the most important thing is to deliver it with sensitivity. So.. doing that in the middle of a New Year's eve celebration, when everyone's having a good time, counting down, and may be drinking to excess, would decidedly be the wrong time to do that. But... do you know that they'll be hurt? As with any loss, there is a grieving process - where are they at? Have they arrived at acceptance? Will they not be happy for you? These are considerations that I think you may have overlooked.

WRT the news: sit with them quietly - each couple. Tell them in no uncertain terms. "I wanted to let you know that we are expecting, and I wanted you to hear it from us first". Be sensitive - there's no need to do high fives or hip bumps in their faces. Empathy here would be to let them know what's happening and not overly celebrate it in front of them. They are aware of their past, so there's no need to mention that to them as well. Merely let them know and watch their reaction.

Also, if there's going to be liquor available, I assume your wife won't be drinking. So it would make sense to deliver this news before the celebration so your siblings understand why your wife isn't drinking.

I'd add this comment: of my 3 sisters, 2 are unable to have children and 1 chose not to. They were happy for us and are part of our kids' lives. Even though our pregnancy may have been a reminder to them, it was not the bad news it might have been.

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    That’s what we did. They didn’t look upset at all. Happy for us, mostly, maybe a bit sad. Thanks for your contribution. – Marco Dec 30 '18 at 18:06
  • @Marco If you are satisfied with an answer, you can accept it by clicking the checkmark symbol next to the arrows. – Arsak Jan 2 at 14:50

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