Infertility is it's own kind of torture

When we got married, we, like most couples, discussed our plans for a family.  We talked about how many kids we wanted and how many years between them.  We decided we wanted 3 kids with 3-4 years between each child.

When we had been married for about 4 years, and without really trying, we got pregnant.  To say we were excited and nervous would be an understatement.

I remember lying on the table for our first ultrasound, hearing the heartbeat, and thinking "this is real.  This is happening!"

My pregnancy was uncomplicated.  No morning sickness, my only "craving" was fried chicken salad, and the baby was healthy at every appointment, although measuring ahead of schedule.  When baby day came our son was born via a scheduled C-section perfectly healthy and 9.5 lbs.

He was the best baby.  Rarely cried.  Slept for 4 hours at a time from the beginning.  And loved to snuggle.  

Given how easily we conceived our son when we decided we were ready for another, we expected it to be just as easy.

Boy were we wrong.

Since our son's birth, we've only ever had 1 other pregnancy and that ended in an early miscarriage.  We followed doctors' orders, we underwent tests, and we tried and tried.  We lived the roller coaster of emotions and we grieved, oh how did we grieve.  But we were never able to grow our family naturally.

Why do I share all of this with you?  Why bare myself and expose a very painful experience?

Because people need to know what infertility looks like.  That there is such a thing as unexplained secondary infertility.  And it is its own kind of torture.

Knowing that your body has produced a baby before, but now for some reason can't, or won't.

And when you are going through that, the last thing you need is friends & family, or worse, strangers, asking "when are you having another baby"?  Or "it's time to give _____ a brother or sister!"  It's like a knife in an open wound.  You are already raw, broken, and devastated.  You already feel like a failure.  The last thing you need is added pressure.

So friends, can I ask a favor?  Please, please STOP asking these questions unless you have allllll the inside knowledge.  And if they brush you off, take that as a hint and don't ask again.

Also, don't give advice about how to get pregnant.  They know how.  It's not a secret.  Just because you know a gal who knows a gal that got drunk and knocked up does not mean that works for everyone.  And a getaway to a resort does not magically make a baby.  The ideal positions are known and I guarantee you they've been scouring all the books & websites & support groups.

I do want to offer some hope, though.  It's not all doom & gloom.  My husband and I are proof that in time, some people find acceptance.  We have grieved the loss of the family we dreamed of and we are now thankful for our small family.  Our son gets 100% of our attention.  He doesn't have to share us with siblings.  And we can afford things that larger families cannot.   Vacations, Birthday and Christmas presents, and almost all the books he wants.  If you want to read more about the benefits of having an only child, check out this post

So please, next time you want to ask your friend/sister/random lady at the store, when she's going to grow her family, just don't.  You have no idea what she has been through.

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