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Why we are out of the closet


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#1 prue~c

Posted 16 May 2010 - 01:26 PM

Some of you might wonder why I feel the need to share with the world my sex life and attempts to conceive a child. It's not the sort of thing my family brought me up to talk about at the dinner table. But funnily enough, it seems to be a topic of conversation whenever my husband and I are guests, be it a BBQ, dinner party or other social occasion.

I made a decision early in our sub-fertility journey to be completely open and above board about what we were going through. Sure, everyone knows someone who has gone through IVF, but I would put a dinner at Assiette (my new favourite restaurant) on it that they didn't know until there was a babe in arms that the couple in question had fertility issues.

Just a couple of weeks ago Essential Baby featured a newsreader - Deborah Knight  - on her second successful IVF pregnancy. And everyone knows about Jessica Rowe's IVF attempts before conceiving her first daughter, then a "miracle" natural pregnancy for the second (and just as an aside, why is it always newsreaders?).

The point of writing for Essential Baby is for me to talk about sub-fertility and assisted conception as it happens. I don't know whether there will be a positive outcome at the end of this process and even if it continues to be a disappointment, I want other women to know they are not alone. I hope by putting my face and name to the issue, it could help others understand what the infertile/sub-fertile are going through.

In fact the only woman in the public eye that I can recall who has "come out" about her failed IVF attempts is the television personality Johanna Griggs. I feel so sorry for her, but she does have two children from her previous marriage. I feel more empathy with her husband to be perfectly honest.

I want people to understand the huge impact it has on personal relationships, professional life, friendships and even something as simple as doing the shopping.

We are confronted everyday, through advertising, television shows, pricing for things such as medical insurance, travel - everything is geared towards the family. Every day I am confronted with my inability to have children.

I want to make my mother a grandmother. I don't want her to have to keep buying and making clothes for her friends' grandchildren because she has none of her own. I want my husband, who is like the Pied Piper, to have the joy of parenting his own child. I want to make my sister an Aunt. I want a Bugaboo, to waste money on inappropriate Collette Dinnigan children's clothing and to finally be able to step inside Fragile for real. I want the spare room - currently masquerading as  "the gym slash office" - to be "the nursery". I want to be able to walk through the kids' department without feeling like it's a jinx, and I really, REALLY want to use the baby names I have been saving since I was 16, to which, my husband miraculously agrees.

We just want a family.

And I want everyone to know that getting pregnant isn't as easy as they think. I was out with a work contact the other day and he told me he was "three days away from jizzing in a cup" but luckily it never came to that. Everyone is has their own story, their own advice, and their own idea of what my husband and I should be doing.

We are about to get back on the bus after two failed Intrauterine Inseminations, two failed IVFs and two failed frozen embryo transfers. We have three stored frozen embryos at the blastocyst stage, which is good news, but to be honest, I can't ever imagine being pregnant. It's such a foreign concept. When I was pregnant for a couple of days in December, I knew straight away. I felt so different, and I knew there was something in there, so now all we have to do is get it to stick.

#2 nora78

Posted 16 May 2010 - 02:32 PM

Hi Prue - I just wanted to add my words of support for you and your husband. I could have written your exact post a few months back, down to the letter!  So good on you for sharing your experiences of AC - I would like to be as bold - and I hope you get lucky before too long.  In the meantime I'll enjoy reading your blog.

Edited by nora78, 16 May 2010 - 02:33 PM.


#3 *LG*

Posted 17 May 2010 - 06:08 PM

I think it is great that you are sharing your journey!
It really is a taboo subject, something that is never talked about often enough.

If I hear another story about how easy it was for someone to get pregnant, or how they only had to walk into a room to get pregnant, or the "we only did it once and now we don't know what to do"...or heaven forbid the..."it took us ages to get pregnant" - how long...? "oh about 6 months"  rolleyes.gif

So thank you for sharing your journey with us. I hope the next part of your journey rewards you nicely original.gif

#4 cheshire_cat

Posted 17 May 2010 - 07:57 PM

QUOTE (prue~c @ 16/05/2010, 01:26 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
to be honest, I can't ever imagine being pregnant. It's such a foreign concept.


YES, this is exactly how I feel. What seems to come so easily for some people feels like some kind of surreal parallel universe to me.

Your blog is great so far, good luck with the journey  original.gif




#5 shebap

Posted 17 May 2010 - 08:02 PM

Hi Prue

I completely understand how you feel.  I want to make my mother a grandmother and my husband a father - we both love kids and just want to have a family of our own.

Looking forward to reading more of your blog.

Sheba

#6 RockyV

Posted 17 May 2010 - 08:28 PM

Hi Prue and Welcome

Really appreciate the view and perspective you are offering readers, with such honesty. It does a great deal to help people who don't understand the incredibly draining journey of AC and IVF.

I will probably get shot down for this, but as someone who conceived without assistance, it feels like we are "the enemy" and often portrayed like this on such websites. I am incredibly grateful I have not had to have the heartache of so many, appreciative of my luck and do not boast or rub it anyone's face, yet we are often accused of inconsiderate comments and having no idea (*LG* type comments).

We are here to support you in your journey, even if we did not necessarily experience it the much more difficult way you have. I have many friends who have fertility issues, success stories and heartbreak. I have been there for all of them.

I wish and all those on their TTC journey a bucket of luck. hheart.gif

#7 kelseyanne

Posted 18 May 2010 - 08:21 AM

Prue,

Thank you so much for being open and honest. One of my biggest frustrations in this journey is that it seems that everything that has been written about infertility/assisted conception has been written by someone who has gone through it and come out the other side with a happy ending. While I am very happy that they get their happy ending, I struggle to relate.

I find one of the hardest things about this is that it is all unknown. I dont know if I will get my happy ending. If I do, I dont know if it will be this month, next year or 5 years down the track. I dont know how much I can actually cope with. I dont know if I will be able to afford to continue down this path.

Thank you for sharing your story, while you are still in the midst of it. I hope that you do have a happy ending very shortly.

Nuit Blanche - to be totally honest, you have no idea what it is like, and you have even stated that you "have not had to have the heartache of so many". You are not the enemy, but it is often very hard for those who struggle with infertility to even be around those with children. You may say things that seem totally appropriate to you, but may strike a nerve for someone who is struggling to have children. Please continue to appreciate how easy it has been for you, and to support those you know with fertility issues. But, just like I cant say I understand how you feel when you have a difficult day with your kids, you cannot know how I feel as I struggle with infertility.

#8 Eirinn

Posted 18 May 2010 - 08:31 AM

Hi Prue, and welcome.

I just want to wish you and all those struggling to conceive the best of luck. It took 2 years, a miscarriage and a stillbirth before I conceived my daughter. I know that is small time compared to what many others go through, but as you know, every month that goes by without a BFP seems immensely long.

Anyway, I want you to know that I know how blessed I am. Every day I think of the people longing to have a baby of their own. My husband and I are both acutely aware that when we go out happily with our little girl, that there may be people staring enviously, as we once did.

#9 hernette

Posted 18 May 2010 - 09:00 PM

QUOTE
I don't know whether there will be a positive outcome at the end of this process and even if it continues to be a disappointment, I want other women to know they are not alone. I hope by putting my face and name to the issue, it could help others understand what the infertile/sub-fertile are going through.


This part spoke to me.  After 18 months and 2 miscarriages I just wish I had a crystal ball to say you will have a baby by this time next year...or by July next year, or whatever.  My mum and DH still tell me "be patient, it will happen" (with the best intentions) but they don't go through the temping day after day and the OPKs, and the convincing DH "yes, it does matter if we miss one night" and then, if you've had multiple miscarriages, you can't even enjoy your BFP if you get one.  

Anyway, enough about me.  I will be following your journey and wish you all the best.

By the way, I recently bought a pomegranate pendant on a chain.  The pomegranate is a symbol if fertility in many cultures.  I have no illusions that it will actually bring me good luck, but I kind of like the idea that other women might find this out and know that we share something.

#10 bubba-licious

Posted 19 May 2010 - 11:05 AM

QUOTE
I will probably get shot down for this, but as someone who conceived without assistance, it feels like we are "the enemy" and often portrayed like this on such websites. I am incredibly grateful I have not had to have the heartache of so many, appreciative of my luck and do not boast or rub it anyone's face, yet we are often accused of inconsiderate comments and having no idea (*LG* type comments).

We are here to support you in your journey, even if we did not necessarily experience it the much more difficult way you have. I have many friends who have fertility issues, success stories and heartbreak. I have been there for all of them.


I do know what you are saying Nuit Blanche. I remember when I first joined EB & saw women how where having trouble concieving comment they just seemed so... jaded. It didn't matter what I said I felt like it was the wrong thing. Well now I am one of 'those' women. Where the comments of fertile women seem so trivial. How bogan is a name. Can I feed my child McDonalds. Can I get pregnant if I DTD standing up  wacko.gif  along with people in my real world being 'supportive' telling me to relax- it will happen when it is ment to, you work too hard, go on a holiday. It really hasn't been that long. And them wanting to know intimate details of your sex life so that they can offer their helpful tips. I have had more blood tests, ultrasounds, 'alternitive' treatments and testing then I can even begin to mention. Not to mention the amount of $ I have wasted on HPT that were never going to show a BFP. Yes I am frickin Jaded!!!

You are not our enemy & I don't think you are portrayed that way but while you think that comments like the one above are 'supportive' you do not know what it is like- you have no idea. I really didn't realise that until I was standing there myself, I honestly thought that I was saying the right things & that these woman were just angry at the world & looking for someone to take it out on.
It is nice that you are their for your friends but please don't expect us to feel like you are supporting us.

Eirinn- Congratulations on your precious little girl what a blessing! (DF & I are known as baby stalkers cause we are so bad at staring at babies & toddlers with envy!  blush.gif )

Prue- I am the opposite to you. I imagine myself with a lovely big belly, holding a newborn on my chest & even getting up in the middle of the night to sooth my crying baby. It is heartbreaking cycle after cycle to realise that it may never happen.  cry1.gif  Good luck with your next attempt.

#11 Sentient Puddle

Posted 19 May 2010 - 11:09 AM

Thank you for sharing your journey Prue - just want to wish you the very best of luck for the future.

#12 winterleaf

Posted 19 May 2010 - 04:23 PM

Prue,

I applaud you for being out of the closet so that others may understand the infertility journey. To raise awareness of how difficult it is.

I wish you all the best for your upcoming cycle and I will be following you.

#13 Kate's first !

Posted 19 May 2010 - 06:46 PM

So empathise with you !

I had a long journey in trying to conceive myself. It took nearly 6 years and the thing that actually helped me the most in conceiving and having a healthy pregnancy was Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture.

I hope that you are successful and I wish you all the best


#14 natjay

Posted 19 May 2010 - 09:28 PM

Wishing you a lot of good luck with your journey.

Good on you for being so brave to tell your story.

I had no idea how rude and insensitive it was to ask people about when they are going to have kids until I joined EB. So many people go through this painful struggle and it really isnt fair. But, a lot of them do come out with a very very good outcome at the end. Hoping you are one of them.

#15 Sand68

Posted 19 May 2010 - 10:17 PM

original.gif

Edited by Sand68, 14 July 2010 - 07:31 PM.


#16 megalula

Posted 20 May 2010 - 08:49 AM

Wow a little bit teary at reading this. I read somewhere on EB during our 2 year ttc journey that every day is a step closer to you having your baby. It really helped me to think of this. No matter if it's 9 months or 9 years away - you're always a step closer. This actually helped me. I really hope it is true for everyone in here trying. That said, for me had I had another miscarriage I think we would have given up. So PPs here are much stronger than me and truly amazing.

I love the idea of the pomegranate. My BFF also bought me two leprechauns - one for a bracelet and a little pewter statue for my bedside table. They're a symbol of fertility too. I'll look out for these and for pomegranate pendants in future.

Good luck Prue and everyone - Oh and I love, love, love Assiette too!

#17 Amanda_R

Posted 20 May 2010 - 09:19 PM

Oh I've been wondering how you have been doing Prue, only just realised this was here.

Will be following closely.  Best wishes for the next trip, I hope its short and ends in the sweetest possible way.

Oh and damn you piquing my curiosity about this baby name you've got! Tounge1.gif

Seriously though, I honestly truly hope it happens, you deserve it.





#18 MamaNita

Posted 21 May 2010 - 02:28 PM

Prue - Life certainly throws many obsticles at you. I too TTC for many years (about 6 to be exact). Our friends just 'knew'. Sometimes words do not need to be said.

When I did get pregnant, it was all a blur. Ask me about how I felt, and I will tell you that pregnancy for me was gruelling. I could never 'relax' or sit back and enjoy it as I was on edge all the time. The years beforehand TTC had changed me. This was now the new 'me'. I will never be what I was again.

Oh FWIW I tossed with the idea of deleting my signature, but I want you to know that I got there. I am blessed, and you will be too. Believe.

#19 Bewitchedmummy

Posted 21 May 2010 - 10:11 PM

Prue... so good to hear from you again!

Enjoying reading about your TTC journey!

Wishing you all the best!

#20 prue~c

Posted 23 May 2010 - 11:01 AM

Thanks for the replies everyone. For the record, Nuit Blanche, I don't consider you to be the enemy  original.gif

Other people's pregnancies don't bother me. Sometimes I get a little teary, and last year I had a bit of an emotional breakdown when several friends all had babies within days, and another announced her very unexpected pregnancy, but since then I have been perfectly fine.

In fact I seem to have become the confidant for a couple of friends who are all in very early pregnancy. They all know about my issues, and for some reason have chosen to confide in me which is quite thrilling, really.

One of the interesting things since this blog started is the number of people who have "come out" in real life to me. I had a call from a work contact the other day who told me about her history of recurrent miscarriage, before she finally had a child. Another acquaintance told me about her efforts to find an egg donor.

Others have called me asking for advice, which I am reticent to give, but at least it has go them thinking!

Prue

And PS, don't remove sigs. This isn't meant to be a blog for infertile people, it's for everyone.


#21 ~mumto2girls~

Posted 23 May 2010 - 11:02 AM

Hi Prue - Like Mel and AmandaR have said its so great to see you again!! Have been wondering how you have been!!

I look froward to reading your blog and your journey ahead of you.. I wish you and your husband all the best and would love to see you get a positive result in the end!!

Take care
Amanda xx

#22 Guest_Bigmess_*

Posted 26 May 2010 - 04:49 PM

best of luck prue.
you never know what life has in store for you next. I was expecting to be infertile (for no reason) and looking forward to being a foster parent.
I was alone for ten years, from 20-30. I was treated badly by men.
I was jealous of women who were TTC, at least they had someone to TTC with! Some love in their life! I guess I was what is ridiculously called 'socially infertile'!

Then all my waiting, hope and faith were rewarded when within the past 2 years I met a man I love, and we got pregnant the first time we tried.

Looking back, I realise I never gave up and always believed it would all happen for me. I also aggressively pursued all options and never forgot how lucky I was to just have a loving family and friends. Best of luck.

#23 harrison~at~last

Posted 29 May 2010 - 09:02 PM

I remember when we were TTC for DD.  Sometime during the 2.5yrs I hated people with babies and kids, but one day I said to DH 'we don't know how they got that baby, one day our joy may be someone else's sadness'.  There's no way for me to combat this, but I have always been very open and honest about our TTC/IVF/ICSI journey because it wasn't easy, it wasn't nice or fun or relaxing or any of those things, but it gave me DD and it's given me these precious babies.  So, I have something to be thankful to it for.

#24 ~Mintie~

Posted 04 June 2010 - 06:43 PM

I must admit, I really admire your openness. Nobody (IRL) knew we were going through IVF, and still today my inlaws don't know that their new grandson is the product of a petree dish. Through my IVF journey, I yearned to have someone to talk to about what I was going through. I was very blessed to have this forum and a handful of very special people that I've met on here to confide in, but sometimes, you just need to talk to people face to face. And I wish I had that. Luckily our journey was short, falling pregnant first go, but I shudder to think of how I would be mentally if that hadn't been the case.
Infertility really is something that people do not understand unless they go through it. And whilst I have occasionally been jealous of those who fall quickly, I more so feel relieved for those who don't have to go through the same heartache I and a few of my friends have gone through. I would not wish it upon anyone.
All the best, I look forward to following your journey, and hope to read some good news from you soon.

#25 mamma2miracles

Posted 13 June 2010 - 10:48 AM

As the mother of two gorgeous IVF boys, just wanted to say good luck on your journey, and I hope you two experience the joy and absolute culture shock becoming a mother is.





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