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Saturday, September 05, 2009



Thank you SO much for writing this! I went through years of infertility treatments, losing four pregnancies. I was constantly fighting not to scream or hit someone every time someone asked me "When are you going to have kids?" and sometimes noting "helpfully" that my husband and I had been married for X number of years and that I wasn't getting any younger. (I know that, thanks.)

Those who knew of our situation weren't much better, with their suggestions to go straight to IVF (no thanks, I don't want to risk becoming an Octomom or have to decide which embryos to abort or freeze indefinitely) or adopt. I also had to grit my teeth for the folks who tried to console me with phrases such as "Don't worry; you can try again" (I HAVE been trying, and I'm getting older every day) or "It was God's will" (well, God seems awfully sadistic to give me hope and then take it away).

I NEVER ask couples about their plans for kids; I assume either they have chosen not to have them or they are trying and going through the same heartache of infertility treatments I went through. In either case, it's a very personal question and one better left unasked. I wish more people would understand that.

Thanks again for writing.

The Barreness-Monica

So wonderfully written, I am overwhelmed with its bare honesty, and beauty.

I am still working on finding my path of peace, where the deep deep pain can be a lessened.
I still try to not to cry when nieces and nephews have birthdays, and many times fall on days when I get my period. All those times I had hoped for...all those days they can not share with a cousin.

Friends still offer suggestions for fertility, and although I know it is coming from a place of feels insulting. Don't you think I have tried all I could think of?

Empathy is not a word I think many consider with us, but instead sympathy.

thank you, thank you, thank you


AWESOME!!! Don't forget the unfathomable financial expense!!

Ryan Ashley Scott

Beautifully written, raw and honest. The emotional heartache of infertility is something that can't be understood unless you've been there, but this post may very well help friends and family of infertile couples to show a little more compassion.

I've been struggling with how to write this response because I agree and disagree at the same time.

I've been on the other side, wondering when some friends were going to have children, not because that's the natural step but because to me, they seem like they would be wonderful parents (trust me, people that seem like they would be crappy parents are NEVER asked when they'll have kids, so at least take compliment in that). The other compliment is that people *care* enough to give advice because inside, they know they can't solve your problem but it's human nature to offer a hand when someone you care for is down (even if being "down" isn't in your eyes but theirs).

That said, we have informally tried for 5 years to have children and our only semi-successful attempt was a stillborn baby boy. So, I know the pain of wanting a child but not being sure it will ever happen.

That said, I continue to ask some people if they plan on having children AND I get that question at least three times a week myself (and yes, it stings).

My answer?? "We'll see, it's not up to me, it's up to God" has worked for me. Despite your faith background, that speaks to a sentiment people can understand. Most people don't even press further but when they do, my response continues to be "it would be a wonderful blessing, we'll see" and I'm not *usually* pressed to tell the story of years of temperature gauging, delivering a dead baby or even plans for the future.

It's a tough position to take, but I don't see the harm in people asking or even being helpful; at least I know they care about me.


Oh wow. Very well-said. I'm on both sides as well. Like I said on the Facebook page, I don't mind people asking me, I'm an open book and I have nothing to hide from friend or stranger. However, I was not ready to have children until now. I didn't feel like I had 100% to give before now. I'm 32. We have been trying for over 5 months now, and no luck. However, given that I'm 32, I'm also very happy and comfortable with my life, if it DOESN'T happen. IVF and fertility treatments are not for me. If it is not God's will, then so be it. I will just have to travel more! I do get sad each month when AF comes, but know that next month we can just try again. It's not ruling my life right now, and I don't think it should, if you are comfortable in who you are and where you are in life. I was thinking the other day about that "Jon & Kate plus 8." They are roughly my age. I could not have imagined wanting a baby so bad at age 24 or 25 and going in for treatments. I guess I was too focused on sewing my wild oats and getting a career started. I always thought the treatments come after years and years of trying, and usually after you are 35. Is it common at so young an age? I had no idea.
Anyway, great post and I can totally relate to the baby showers, the stories about kids, the toothless photos, all of it. My fridge is filled with nieces and nephews and friends' babies, and that's OK. We need to be at peace with it.


That was well written. I have been through IVF 5 times, I did get pregnant on the third try but had a miscarriage. I don't like it when the first question out of a new acquaintances mouth is "do you have Kids", I understand that they are just trying to be friendly and make conversation but it is such a hard question to answer. Now I just say "no" and don't offer any explanation, the person usually doesn't have much to say after that though. The stats are interesting to me if so many people in the world have infertility where are they?


In a few paragraphs, Pamela speaks of her journey through life's ultimate disappointment in a manner that is both heartbreaking and dignified. Thank you for summing up so poetically what has been my own very similar experience and educating those for who fertility is a given.

A recent real estate transaction lead a broker who I had just met to not only ask me if I had children, but she went right onto the question "So how many children do you and your husband have?" When I replied a polite but finite "none" , she furthered, "So are you just recently married?" Again, "We are celebrating our ten year anniversary this week." No further questions. Just a puzzled stare. The question does arise several times a week and it always, always stings. I am not looking for empathy, and I hate to be pitied! I'm just looking for a little sensitivity people.


I can give no other response other than this: Pamela has described, to a T, the way infertility has felt to me. Thanks, Pamela.


In the first year I wasn't in freak out mode, but I was worried. I was also 24 thinking I would have no problems. I'm now 30 diagnosed and unable to afford treatment. I once said I'd never do IUI or IVF until I had no choice. Its amazing how we eat our words. Also IVF won't make u Octomom. That's all her docs doing!!! No doc in his right mind would put back 6 embryos. If he suggests it ....RUN!!

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