It’s just IVF…..

Since my very public 3rd miscarriage back in November, we’ve received a whole spectrum of support from friends and family. We’ve been very open about our treatment plan and how things are progressing. Frankly, we’re starting to get a little miffed pissed at peoples indifference about taking the next step to IVF. Since our problem was always staying pregnant rather than getting pregnant, it’s been difficult for us to wrap our minds around IVF. IVF is the big enchilada, the holy grail of infertility treatments and as such has more weight with people than say IUIs & injectables. Yet, people act like we’re talking about getting flu shots!

For example, on Friday we were at my in-laws and my husband casually mentioned that he’d talked to a coworker about his journey with IVF (3 failed cycles) and how he hoped we would have better luck. I mentioned the availability of a possible FET or two after a fresh IVF cycle and how that could potentially reduce our costs and the physical impact on me. My MIL & SIL were in the room and both just stared blankly at the tv as if we were discussing the migration patterns of ants. No questions? No comments? Hello, is this thing on? This is the 5th or 6th time my husband has brought up IVF with his family. My mother in law has said things like “we just really hope something works for you” or “I’m sorry you guys have to go through this.” We know they are sympathetic and we know that they do hope the best for us, but we’d appreciate some interest in this major life event! 

My immediate family has been great though, so we do have them. My mother especially is VERY interested in the whole process and has even done her own research (including visiting my RE’s website). As we go through it all, I’d love for our families to know and ask and care when the milestones occur. Is that asking too much? I’ve seen other bloggers have their entire families go with them for the embryo transfers, so I just can’t imagine wanting a text asking where things are at is too much to ask. Then there’s my grandma, who I’m close with otherwise, is quick to change the subject whenever I bring it up. It is so frustrating! We’re getting to the point where we just want to quit talking about it and just let them all wonder what is going on (maybe then they’ll ask!). 

In general, I think it just upsets us that people aren’t treating it like a big deal, and it is just a HUGE deal to us. Maybe we’re in the wrong here, maybe it isn’t that big of a deal. But even if it isn’t, shouldn’t people humor us and act like it is? I’ve shown more concern for a friend who got a bad dye job than what I’ve received from the majority of my friends. Is this common? How much support have you all received through your IVF journeys? Am I expecting too much? 


Resolve to know more


RESOLVE is urging the infertility community to spread the message “Resolve to know more.” I’m writing about how others can resolve to know more about comforting someone battling infertility. Since infertility is still a fairly uncomfortable topic for most, treading the waters can be intimidating. Here are a few tips –

  • Stay away from using cliches. We’ve heard them all before and they weren’t helpful the first time.  “God has a plan for you” or “It will happen when it’s meant to happen” or my personal favorite, “Just relax” make us crazy! The next person who tells me to relax is coming off my Christmas card list. If you want a generic thing to say, try “I’m so sorry, that must be horribly difficult. If you want to talk about it, please let me know”. 
  • Be extra sensitive on holidays. Holidays can be especially painful for those of us with infertility. Imagining how events would be different with kids, seeing a facebook feed full of babies and children enjoying the holiday, and being around our family members with kids are just a few of the triggers than can make the holidays extra difficult. I have a friend who sends me a text every mothers day just to “let me know she’s thinking of me”. An easy thing for her to do, but it really has meant a lot to me. 
  • Be interested in the process. The friends and family we’ve found the most comfort in are the ones most interested in our treatment. Treating infertility isn’t just taking a few pills and having a bunch of sex. It is a time consuming, complicated, sometimes painful, always exhausting, and completely engulfing process. I appreciate when my friends and family ask questions and seem interested. 
  • Don’t complain about your pregnancy. We know you are bloated, swollen and nauseous but we’d love to feel ten times worse and be in your shoes. Whenever I hear a woman complaining about her pregnancy I want to just shake her and tell her how lucky she is and to appreciate every wave of nausea, but I don’t because that’s what a crazy person would do (and I’m not quite there). 
  • Offer your time. If you are family or a close friend, offer a ride to an appointment or to sit with them in the waiting room. A lot of appointments are involved with infertility treatments and it can get overwhelming. Having someone else come with us make it a bit more fun and spices up the routine. Personally, I prefer to go to my appointments alone but I do appreciate the offer. 

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