Sunday, April 21, 2013

Infertility Never Leaves You

Nothing like the start of National Infertility Awareness week to get you started blogging again.  It took more than that actually…. it took an interaction with a stranger in the most unlikely of places.

We had a garage sale today.   Hadn’t really planned on it, but our neighborhood was having one and I had stacks of things to go various places:  the used bookstore, Goodwill, the music store.  

I ended up putting the books out for the garage sale.   In an effort to encourage people to buy more, you could pay a dollar for one—or get five for two dollars.  What a deal.   I hadn’t really expected anyone to buy them, but all my favorite infertility titles were out there:  The Infertility Cure, Taking Charge of Your Fertility,  and even a children’s book I had from my initial bout of infertility with my first husband.

There was a man browsing the titles and I saw him pick them up.  He looked through all the books, I think trying to find a fifth title.  He didn’t find one, so he asked if he could have all of them for two dollars.    I looked at him and simply said take them.  I wish you luck and hope.  And, then I cried.  [And I’m still crying as I write this.]

Even though we are one of the fortunate ones to have had the means to an end, I am still so sad that one in eight people have to suffer through this nightmare.   Most people would be surprised to know that someone in their family or close circle of friends has been suffering.  Often because of shame or guilt, the topic is never discussed.   

Wondering what you can do?   Here are a couple of suggestions:
  • Don’t ask married couples when they are planning to have kids.   Most will mention it when they are ready and need some encouragement for that next step.  
  • If you are in a position to decide on company medical benefits, have compassion and cover infertility treatments.   The cost of treatment or adoption is astronomical.  Couples usually find themselves in debt or without savings by the end of the journey.   Treatment is often postponed, which never helps in age-related infertility.
I know that when many of us cross over to the family side, our infertility warriors who are still fighting can feel left behind.  Just trust us when we say that we never forget the pain, it often surfaces at the most unlikely of times.  

Keep the hope. 

Mr. F, dreams do come true.
Mr. F just weeks away from his 2nd birthday.