Dear Fertile People

Things an infertile girl wants you to know

Tag: The Club

Seriously?

Today we learned that we have male factor infertility in addition to my PCOS, blood clotting disorder, recurrent miscarriages and autoimmune disease.

Please don’t tell me some stupid shit like it just wasn’t meant to be. I might punch you in the throat.

A tip

Why are Mother’s and Father’s Day so close?
Why not space them out to give us infertile/loss people a bit of time to breathe?

As I was falling apart, my husband was working desperately to help me keep it together.
Reverse that, only one month later and I am feeling off-kilter and unbalanced.

This year was particularly hard for both of us. We have already decided that next year we are going to try and ignore it all and go to a movie. We just sat around, looked at each other and cried occasionally. I do not want to do that again anytime soon.

Here’s a tip for the fertile people: it’s ok to acknowledge these two days. If you are thinking of it, you can be sure that we are as well.

Purple nail polish?

In the last month or so, I have had several unexpected infertility and loss bonding sessions.
A sweet co-worker going through her first loss. The lovely tech taking my blood the day before Mother’s Day while being surrounding by pregnant women. The online friend trying to figure out how to mark the due date of her lost baby without falling into the pit of depression.

These three conversations were a result of my openness and willingness to talk about infertility and loss. This is fairly new for me. I used to be fully in the closet. I don’t even know why. Why don’t people talk about infertility? It’s too personal? That just seems silly now. I gain so much from these interactions. Infertility, despite the strong online community, is very isolating in real life. Fertility is all around you – literally. You feel alone in your grief with only your spouse to hang on to. Until you start talking about it. When you find a person dealing with infertility too, the bond is immediate. You are sisters. Sisters in loss. We have our own club. It sucks, but it’s ours.

I wish that there was a way for us to find each other IRL. Without stupid rubber bracelets. Something more subtle. Purple nail polish on our pinky fingers?

Don’t Say This

Dear Fertile People,

Have you tried blank supplements? It’s supposed to help you get pregnant.

Argh! Don’t say this!

If there is a supplement out there that did what it promised, I would know about it. The infertility community, especially the online infertility community, is crazy well researched. We can spout off stats, treatment options, test results and opinions like you wouldn’t believe. We are girls who know not only what the doctor is going to say before you see him, but we’ve researched it to high heaven, have created a pro/con list and have pages of questions.

Not only would I know about a miracle supplement if it existed, but mixing supplements and high powered fertility medicine is not a good idea. At the very least, talk to your doctor first.

So don’t say this, there’s nothing to be gained by this question/suggestion.

Announcing a pregnancy

Dear Fertile People,

This is a tough one. You’re having a baby and you’re super excited about it. I get that. I’m happy for you. I’m also sad, sad, sad for me. Regardless of how you announce your pregnancy, it’s always like a blow to the head, unexpected and crushing. A reminder of what I don’t have.

So what’s the best way to announce your pregnancy to someone dealing with infertility? Slowly, allowing for sufficient processing time. If you’re close with the person, chances are that they probably know if your pregnancy was planned or not. A planned pregnancy is easier to deal with because everyone knew it was coming. Eventually. An unplanned, out of the blue pregnancy announcement is hard. On both parties. Do your best to be sensitive and once again, allow time for processing.

I am a fan of announcing a pregnancy via email. Not to everyone, but to those that might have a hard time with the news. Email allows me to have my reaction, whatever it may be, by myself. I control when I can/want to respond. The extra processing time is a godsend.

It’s a crappy experience for everyone involved. Sensitivity goes a long, long way.

The Baby Shower Guide

There’s a baby shower going on today at work. I was feeling bad that I didn’t think that I could go. I put in money and signed the card but anything baby shower related is too painful for me. Then I feel bad. Then I feel sad. It’s a cycle, one that repeats itself all day.

Really though, why would I do something that hurts so much? No one will care. There will be plenty of people there and I’m sure that I won’t be missed. I just tried to explain why I won’t be able to participate and got a really, really insensitive response. People just don’t understand. But I knew that already.

The Baby Shower Guide for Infertile People:

Don’t go. If it hurts, don’t do it. Since we know that the understanding is just not there, don’t attempt to explain unless you are asked. Just don’t go. If anyone is upset you can tell them that it is too painful. No more, no less. Anyone who doesn’t get it is pretty damn thick. I don’t see an upside to going. The only downside is that I don’t get a cupcake. Oh well. I’ll live.

The Club

Congratulations, you have functioning ovaries! Have a super special parking spot.

I will be in the back of the lot, not part of the club.

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