Gifts for the non-pregnant woman
January 17, 2009 10:10 AM   Subscribe

My wife's not pregnant. How do I perk her up?

We're trying for littleclasstool 2.0, haven't been trying long, but she'd been convinced by various tummy rumblings over the last few days that we were go for fertilization. We were going to wait until inauguration day to find out for sure ("yes we can" and all that), but nature let her know this morning.

So she's sad. And I'd like to do something silly to make her happy. I need ideas.

She shares my sense of humor and therefore will see the comedy in actually making fun of the situation itself. Also, we're on budgetary lockdown this month, so I'm looking for low-to-no-money ideas.
posted by middleclasstool to Human Relations (26 answers total)
A glass of champagne, a nice bath with rose petals in it, and a warm towel straight from the drier that you hug her with when she gets out of the tub.

then some more sex to start again
posted by rmless at 10:16 AM on January 17, 2009 [3 favorites]

if you're looking to find comedy in the situation maybe you could make her a weird meal or snack? Something that a pregnant woman would want to eat... ice cream, pickles, something (possibly stereotypical) along those lines.

Also, getting drunk would be something she couldn't do if she was pregnant!
posted by slograffiti at 10:18 AM on January 17, 2009 [2 favorites]

There was an episode of Friends where they throw a baby shower for Phoebe who was having her brother's kids and they gave her stuff like alcohol and leather pants, for after the kids were born and given away. She didn't react well. If you like the show maybe you could find that episode for her. Or, in another episode Chandler and Monica are horrified by a birthing video.

Or just get her drunk like slograffiti said.
posted by cabingirl at 10:26 AM on January 17, 2009

I don't think you'd want to give her ice cream and pickles as though she was pregnant -- seems like you're kind of shoving her non-pregnancy in her face. I would, however, go out for really good sushi (which she wouldn't be able to eat if she were pregnant).
posted by chowflap at 10:48 AM on January 17, 2009 [1 favorite]

Definitely more sex.

Definitely do things she wouldn't be able to do if pregnant.
posted by batmonkey at 10:52 AM on January 17, 2009

Seconding the bath and all that.

And like chowflap said, instead of getting her food that a pregnant woman would want, get her (or even make her a dinner with) stuff that she can no longer eat or drink once she's pregnant (soft cheeses, if she likes those, some nice wine, pate, seafood, etcetera).
posted by Ms. Next at 10:54 AM on January 17, 2009

Response by poster: More sex will be coming, just not for a couple of days.
posted by middleclasstool at 11:00 AM on January 17, 2009

Also, I can imagine that she's sad, and that she was hopefully paying close attention to her body, but: "she'd been convinced by various tummy rumblings over the last few days that we were go for fertilization" - maybe others have different ideas of experiences about that, but I cannot really think of any pregnancy symptoms (except for maybe the nausea and that's a stretch) that would cause tummy rumblings. Did she read that somewhere? If not, she might want to read up about the early signs of pregnancy, so that she doesn't get her hopes up in vain.
posted by Ms. Next at 11:01 AM on January 17, 2009

Response by poster: She's going on experience here. With the last one, she had unusual cramps for several days before she was due for her period, which never happens for her. At first she was convinced she was getting it early (which, again, never happens), and then wham blammo, we found out before church one Sunday that there was a bun in the oven.

Same thing happened this time, really early and unusual-feeling cramps. So she figured it was the same thing. But then her period came this morning, so.
posted by middleclasstool at 11:07 AM on January 17, 2009

middleclasstool: thanks for answering my question. Didn't know that, that's interesting. In that case I hope she'll feel them again soon.
posted by Ms. Next at 11:21 AM on January 17, 2009

It's a beautiful day. I think you should go to Pinnacle Mountain, then have a late lunch/early dinner at Capi's.
posted by box at 11:22 AM on January 17, 2009

I'm thinking that if you have another kid at home, that the best thing to do is give her a complete day off. Make up a little tray of hot cocoa, snacks and a book or movie. Then swoop her up in your arms and carry her to bed. Give her a big kiss and tell her you're taking the kid out for two hours, and you'll have a surprise for her when you get home. The surprise doesn't have to be anything big, just a candy bar or flower or a silly toy that the other kid picks out, tied up with a bow.

Do not, under any circumstances, give her a baby/pregnancy related gift. My husband made the mistake of bringing home a spare Mother's day dessert from his job because he thought I'd like the chocolate mousse. Instead I sobbed for half an hour. (Although I think it was the pity sex that night that finally ending our three years of trying)
posted by saffry at 11:57 AM on January 17, 2009 [7 favorites]

Probably just being with her is enough. Get a movie, maybe a bottle of wine. If she wants to talk, listen. Try not to say too much, unless she wants you to.
posted by KokuRyu at 12:04 PM on January 17, 2009

Probably just being with her is enough. Get a movie, maybe a bottle of wine. If she wants to talk, listen. Try not to say too much, unless she wants you to.

Spot on- making a non-pregnancy somehow be about anything involving pregnancy seems weird.
posted by gjc at 1:21 PM on January 17, 2009

I'm in a similar situation to Mrs. Classtool, in that we've been trying to get pregnant again for almost a year with no luck. It's one of the worst feelings in the world - you try not to get your hopes up too much, but it still feels like a punch in the gut every time your period shows up. I get angry (F@#K you, G_d !!!), guilty (I'm being punished for using birth control all of these years) self-loathing (I don't deserve to have another child) and hopeless (what's the use of getting up in the morning when nothing good is ever going to happen to me again). I'm starting to cry now just writing this.

What helps me is when my husband gives me a little space to mope - but not too much, or I start to spiral down into even deeper despair. Getting me out of the house and going somewhere beautiful and scenic is helpful. If she has a hobby, encourage her to get creative by buying her a nifty tool, gadget or kit. Getting some take-out and renting a good comedy is always a boost.

If she feels like talking, tell her that you love her and that she is a good person who deserves to have happiness in her life. Remind her that she is an awesome mother to littleclasstool 1.0 and that you are grateful for having him/her. Let her know that you will continue to love her no matter what happens.
posted by echolalia67 at 2:32 PM on January 17, 2009 [2 favorites]

Sounds like you want to o something along the lines of "So this sucks, so let's take a moment to recognise that and move on."

I'd tie a ribbon around a box of pads or tampons and give her X number of home-made gift certificates good for on-demand baby makin' nookie. And a good old fashioned snog.
posted by DarlingBri at 3:55 PM on January 17, 2009 [1 favorite]

As a practical matter sometimes pregnant people still get a fake period. If this one is lighter than usual.... (I know this from experience.)
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 5:40 PM on January 17, 2009

My wife and I went through a similar situation and were POSITIVE we were pregnant. Nope, the period came. And then, 3 1/2 weeks later, she started getting all these weird symptoms. We thought she was sick, until she used the left-over pregnancy test kit ... bingo, we're pregnant! So don't be surprised if pregnancy is in the very near future.
posted by Happydaz at 5:44 PM on January 17, 2009 [1 favorite]

I like the above suggestions for a cozy romantic pampering session - wine, nice dinner, bubble bath, DVD. My answer to everything is "have a massage", so I think you should give her a massage, even if you just massage her feet while you're both snuggled up on the couch watching the DVD. Or a tummy rub?

I have a few wiccan friends, and in this sort of situation they'd be doing fertility rituals. I know of 3 wiccan women who each did a ritual of abundance (they all swear the intention was to increase their financial abundance) and all 3 of them got pregnant within a couple of months of each other. I find this absolutely hilarious.

If it doesn't conflict with any of your beliefs or morals, I imagine you could find a basic fertility ritual doing something like lighting a candle of a particular colour, making an affirmation of your intention to get pregnant, sipping some wine, sprinkling some herbs around and doing something sexay. I think that could be quite fun, positive & intimate for the two of you. You could even make a ferility dinner with things like eggs, phallic shaped vegetables, cliched "aphrosdiac" food such as oysters. Champagne! (Champagne is my second answer to everything, after massage).

If you're interested in the magic pregnancy spell, memail me & I'll ask my wiccan friend for it.

posted by goshling at 6:46 PM on January 17, 2009

be kind. moreso than usual.
posted by pinky at 6:48 PM on January 17, 2009

If you've been trying for a while, an interesting thing to do to make sex more low-key and less "We gotta do it NOW" is to wear a condom during sex. Silly, but it's a reminder that it's more than just reproduction.
posted by RikiTikiTavi at 9:24 PM on January 17, 2009

For some crazy reason, I'd be likely to remind her that I LOVE HER, no matter her reproductive state. From your perspective, she's given you one perfect child, continues to be your wife, and otherwise continues to live life with you as opposed to someone else. A certain amount of thanks and 'we're together no matter what' seem to be in order. Reminding her that you're around no matter what - and will continue to be - may well go a long way.
posted by chrisinseoul at 6:49 AM on January 18, 2009 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: MeMail reminders point out that I have been remiss in following up to this thread (thanks for that feature, Matt/pb) so here it is, simple and underwhelming though it may be:

We just took our toddler out and walked down the street to the park. We took turns holding him in our laps while we slid down the big slide, watched him play with sticks and emphatically point at the basketball players while triumphantly yelling "BALL" over and over again.

Afterward we took him to a pizza place, got a pie and a couple of beers, and watched him hit on an entire booth of teenage girls. They ate it up -- little dude's a charmer. I took him for a tour of the arcade, then we went home and she snuggled up with him.

Funny thing is, he did the heavy lifting for me. Just by being simultaneously his mommy's boy and pant-wettingly hilarious, he made her forget her funk in no time. I can do the funny, but not with his ease.
posted by middleclasstool at 8:17 PM on February 16, 2009 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: Well, and now I'd like to follow up to my follow-up.

We're pregnant again, and nearly out of the first trimester, so I've been granted permission to go public.

Yay for babies! Boo for my bank account!
posted by middleclasstool at 12:21 PM on May 30, 2009 [3 favorites]

posted by goshling at 11:11 PM on May 30, 2009

Congratulations, mct!
posted by box at 8:13 AM on May 31, 2009

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