Five things our members love about

by Laura Sussely-Pope

Favorite ThingsAsk a group of people what their favorite thing is about our site and you'll come up with a wide variety of responses!

What we found when we chatted with our members, was that topics typically struck around a few common themes.

We pulled together a few selections in each to share with you. Thank you "shout-outs" to those who shared!

What members love about

1. Cool tools

"One feature shows how your baby develops in your womb, week by week. Another tool lets you set up a pregnancy calendar with a link every day to articles, books, products, or a thought for the day. I sent the link to my mom so she could follow along, too," Suzanne shares.

Elise says, "I joined as my husband and I decided we were ready to start a family. We both were naive -- thinking that all we needed to do was try. After all, both of our siblings seemed to have families easily. As the weeks stretched into months, my anxiety level grew. Then I finally learned about charting through the resources, tools, and support here onsite! We're now expecting number two! It works!

2. Getting the 411!

"The site's articles are well written and inform me about the risks and benefits without scaring me away from children. Thank you!" Megan recommends.

"Throughout my pregnancies and as I'm now raising my kids, I've been able to turn to and find the resources for whatever I was looking for. I learned tips on dealing with horrid morning sickness, learned what my options were for birthing, and even that green poop was not always as bad as it looked," Stephanie says.

3. Compassionate spirits

"After my loss, I felt like giving up on my dream of having a family. I felt so incredibly alone -- and then it began. One notification email that I had a private message. Then another…and another. Soon my inbox was full. I followed a link to my birth club only to see an outpouring there as well. Soon after, hosted 'Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Month.' My entire board put a blinkie in their signatures for MY baby even when I learned some were mourning their own previous loss. I had lived in a bubble world and did not realize until this event that 1 in 8 women endure this type of pain. It's taken time to heal and I know that I will never forget, but the outpouring of support not only for me but for ALL that are in pain or struggling has been phenomenal," a member remembers.

Kacy states, "The compassionate spirit of this whole site amazes me. Over the years, I've witnessed people reaching out to one another. Even those that may be virtual strangers "now" find that they are connected with someone else's story."

4. Open borders

"I came to after becoming disenchanted with another site. The expectation there was that once you joined a particular group, you stayed put and didn't dare cross the 'line.' Here, the belief seems to be the exact opposite! If you see a thread that you can contribute to, you jump in! If you want to "board hop," go for it. 'Lurking' to give support, ask advice, or just enjoy more conversations is fun and helps me feel a bigger part. I'm not a "board member" -- I'm a member!" Janice says.

5. "Sisterhood"

Grace says, "Being a member of means you accept being a part of a 'sisterhood.' Something that I learned, was that support does not always mean agreement. Sometimes you may not hear advice that you want, but it may be exactly what you need to hear. I love that I can trust people to give me honest feedback."

"I believe our groups have been through a bit of everything together. Pregnancy, loss, financial worries, relationship woes, colic, teething, tantrums, moves cross-country (and across continents), and tons of celebrations! We've vented, laughed, cried, fought and then hugged and made up -- or at least agreed to disagree and every emotion in between. The bond we share is a sisterhood and as long as I have my 'family' I know we can survive most everything." Karen says.

We'd love hearing more about your personal favorites! Feel free to give a shout out to your friends! Invite them back here to do the same!

Photo courtesy of iStockphoto.