Being pregnant at the same time as your best friend sounds like a dream come true. You'd have a built in support system who knows exactly what you're going through. But for one married couple, that dream is actually their reality - they're both expecting babies at the same time.
In a sweet Instagram pregnancy announcement, celebrity makeup artist Toby Fleischman shared the news that she and her wife Lindsay Lanciault are both pregnant. Oh - and their due dates are only 3 weeks apart, with their "twinblings" both due this summer.
"Everyone always says they want to get pregnant with their best friend," Fleischman wrote in her caption, accompanying a photo of the two holding complementary "It's a boy"/"It's also a boy" signs. "And I just happened to be lucky enough to be married to mine."
"Parallel pregnancies" for lesbian couples aren't common, according to Dr. Kristin Bendikson, a fertility specialist at USC Fertility. "The only time I've seen it happen is when I was a resident - and that was, like, 20 years ago," Dr. Bendikson told PopSugar while discussing the Fleischman-Lanciault family's story. "The overwhelming majority of lesbian couples that I see are usually focused on one person getting pregnant at a time."
The soon-to-be moms were in that same boat when they initially began their journey to motherhood. The Los Angeles couple explained to PopSugar that Fleischman, the older of the two, was planning on getting pregnant first. She successfully did, but that pregnancy ended in miscarriage. Complications arose, resulting in the two women having to find a new sperm donor and adding stress to their relationship, something that tends to happen when any couple is having difficulty conceiving.
But there was an added level of tension that's unique to lesbian couples struggling with one partner's impaired fertility - the eventual decision to shift and have Lanciault be the focus of new attempts to conceive. Those complicated feelings are a part of why the two chose to share their story. "I wish more women had spoken openly to me about it before and during our process. It wasn't until I started sharing the details with some friends that I learned I wasn't alone," Fleischman told Babble.
Eventually, with the help of their acupuncturist Danica Thornberry, the two women healed their rift and refocused on their now-joint efforts to have a baby. After two years of struggling to conceive, Fleischman found out she was pregnant in November, just as Lanciault was beginning to try. Lanciault became pregnant just a few weeks later, via the same sperm donor.
Though "elated" at the news, like many LGBTQ families, the pair were somewhat wary in light of Donald Trump's election. Because of this, they're taking precautions by adopting each other's birth child as early as legally possible, "just in case." They also noted that they feel the "challenge" of "this huge responsibility to raise respectful, compassionate, feminist men," given that they're two women expecting two boys.
Of course, there are some obvious downsides - like the high-than-average level of mood-swinging pregnancy hormones in their house. Fleischman told PopSugar, "[W]e go through waves - in one day - of being obsessed and in love with each other and so euphoric to 'I don't want to be next to you. Please don't talk to me.'"
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