Sunday, April 22, 2012

Don't Ignore Infertility

This post is for National Infertility Awareness Week.  I'm participating in Resolve's "Don't Ignore..." prompt.  Please feel free to link to this or to send it to people outside of the infertility community.

So please, Don't Ignore Infertility.

Don't pretend that it doesn't exist.

Don't believe that because babies are born every day, that thousands of other couples are not struggling to realize their hopes of having a family.

Don't think that it's rare.  Or that it only happens to young cancer victims, or people over 40.

Because I am infertile.

And so are many of my friends.
  • My sister had a miscarriage before her current 36 week pregnancy.                                             
  • My good friend from high school struggled for almost 2 years and then had a miscarriage before  conceiving her daughter.  
  • Another high school friend had her first while on birth control at 22.  But it took her over two years to conceive her twin boys afterwards.
  • My co-worker had a miscarriage in between her two healthy baby girls.  The 2nd time took 8 months.
  • My other co-worker has been trying for over 2 years and is taking a break from the meds and IUIs.
  • A good friend and her husband tried for 2 years before having a successful 1st IVF.                  
  • My BFF has been NTNT for about 18 months now.
  • Another friend tried for over a year (without intervention) and was totally shocked when she actually got pregnant after about a year and a half.
  • Another couple we are close to has tried for over a year with 2 miscarriages.  They have done Clomid + IUI and are looking at IVF.
Facebook is telling an even bigger story although usually through kind of cryptic posts.  I found out today about 1 Facebook friend who had a miscarriage and there's another that I'm pretty sure has had one.

It's scary to talk about personal issues in the real world.  But the more people like Giuliana Rancic talk about their struggles with infertility, the easier it is for the rest of us to say that we too struggle.

Infertility hurts me every single day.  Even on the days when I'm happy.  Even on the days when I'm not sticking needles into my belly.  It hurts when I see women with their babies.  It hurts when I hear pregnancy announcements.  It hurts when I re-imagine my future with my husband potentially without a child.

As humans, we have a biological desire to procreate.  To see our genes live on in another.  Adoption is great.  But it doesn't solve this most human of urges.

As a teacher, I have taught over a thousand students over my career.  Is it too much ask that I have my own child to teach?

Please, don't forget me.

Additional Resources: 


  1. Could not have said it better myself. Thank you for sharing this. May the day come where no one feels the need to hide that they are living with infertility.

  2. Nicely done. Your list of people you know got me thinking of the ones I know - a friend who had 3 miscarriages and has still not (10 years on) told her family, a cousin who was infertile and had to adopt, his brother who lost a baby at birth, in-law aunt and uncle who never had children (and wouldn't have had access in those days to birth control), and others, as well as the beautiful people I have met on-line due to infertility - the friend who had 18 miscarriages, one ectopic, and one real life, now-cheeky, daughter, the friend who adopted siblings, and the friends who, like me are living life without kids.

    Thanks for reminding me of their struggles, and allowing me to pay tribute.

  3. Thank you for your words that have read my can you go back and tell my 15 year old self to pay attention to length of periods, also tell my 25 year old self the same thing.....and gee force my 27yr old self to read this and accept that I will be one of these stats.

  4. Infertility and loss is around us, even if it is not mentioned in loud words... thanks for mentioning this...

    Good Luck with your IVF cycle...


  5. Thanks for stopping by my blog! Excellent post! I'm just putting the finishing touches on my NIAW post too. You are so right about the cryptic posts on FB...makes those of us who want to educate feel isolated even when we know there are MANY of us out there! XO

  6. Sometimes I feel like it is easier for people to "ignore" us because the topic makes them so uncomfortable. It is hard sometimes to know how much to share and when to hold back...great post!