While we, at The Band, work tirelessly to bring you expert resource pages, sometimes the best advice is from someone who has been where you're standing. What follows is a mixture between a resource page and a post.
I introduce to you, The Band, a Demo Tape.
Take what you need and leave the rest.
I am one of the lucky ones. I am infertile, but after six failed Artificial Inseminations (AI), from two different doctors, and three surgeries to remove endometriosis and uterine polyps, I finally got pregnant with twins via In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF).
For the most part, I am on the other side of infertility, but there are times when I still get mad at my body for not cooperating. It took three years and almost twenty-thousand dollars to become pregnant. It doesn’t seem fair that most people get to become pregnant for free.
There are a few things I want to pass along to those who are still trying to conceive but haven’t achieved pregnancy yet:
(1) Expect to get rude/hurtful comments from people who find out you are going through Assisted Reproductive Treatment (ART).
You'll likely hear that you are being selfish for not adopting, or that it's not natural to get pregnant with a doctor’s help.
My comeback to the first point was always, “Well, I see you have biological children so why didn’t you adopt instead of getting pregnant? Isn’t that equally selfish?”
This will generally shut them up, or at least get them to leave you alone. If they don’t have children, shrug it off. They don't know what it is like to want your own child.
People don’t know all the facts about your particular situation, and while it would be nice for them to mind their own business, they won’t. Ignore them if you can and focus on your goal of getting pregnant.
As far as ART not being natural, if medical technology exists that can help with achieving pregnancy, it would be stupid not to use it. It is no different than any other medical condition for which a treatment exists.
For those people who will tell you that ART “takes God out of the process,” ummm, how so? If you believe in a God, then whether or not the ART is successful is a pretty good indication that God is involved in the process. If you don’t believe in a God, then you can discard this argument as not relevant and keep moving forward.
(2) If you are not seeing results from your doctor, change doctors.
I know this is not a fun proposition, having to jump through all the hoops again, but if you are not getting results with your current clinic, you might want to consider a different clinic. I recommend checking out the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Annual ART Success Rates Reports to see where your provider stands (the CDC mandates that clinics performing ART annually provide data for all procedures performed).
(3) You already know this, it will hurt to see those around you get pregnant easily.
Baby showers will be torture. Pregnancy announcements will be like drive by shootings. You will probably cry every time you pee on one of those evil pee sticks and it comes up negative. The fertility medicines will make things worse. Expect to be more of a basket case than usual. Cry and then move on to the next part of your plan.
(4) Have a plan.
Call your insurance company ahead of time to see what they will cover. Look at your clinic's statistics for pregnancy success via AI (less expensive) and success rates for IVF (more expensive) and tell the doctor which way you want to go.
See if your clinic has a program where you pre-pay for three proceedures, and if you don't achieve pregnancy, a portion of your money is refunded. There are usually restrictions on these programs (age, medical history, etc.) but if you qualify, it can save you money. Approach getting pregnant as methodically as you can.
(5) Expect to lose all sense of modesty.
You will not care who sees your nether regions after a few rounds on the ART merry go round. You will feel like your body is not your own and that you are at the mercy of the doctors and lab technicians. It may feel like you are buying a car rather than trying to conceive a baby. That it is a normal feeling. Remember, how you get pregnant is not as important as that you get pregnant.
(6) You will be annoyed by people who think that IVF is guaranteed to work.
People will refer to your embryos as being “implanted” into your uterus, when in reality, they are just transferred to your uterus. Implantation is not guaranteed.
It may take more than one attempt at IVF to get pregnant. This is also true for AI. Don’t get discouraged if you do not get pregnant on the first try. Put your head down and just keep plugging through the crap, the sadness, and the feelings of anger you have towards your body, until you come out the other side. And know that you will come out the other side.
You will get through this. You will be a different person when all is said and done, but that is okay.
Don’t be afraid to tell people what you are going through. Although there will be those who are insensitive, you will be surprised at how many people suffer, or have suffered, with infertility. It is a very common condition. You are not alone. A lot of us have gone through it, are going through it, or have a relative who is going through it. Do not feel ashamed that you need help getting pregnant. Be gentle with yourself and know that you are one of many.
I wish you all success.4 Comments