Resolve is the National Association of Infertility and defines Secondary Infertility as the “Inability to become pregnant, or to carry a pregnancy to term, following the birth of one or more biological children. The birth of the first child does not involve any assisted reproductive technologies or fertility medications.”
Yep, that’s me. It’s something I never thought I would be a part of. I don’t know how many times I’ve answered questions like; Is he your only chid and Don’t you want another one? Yes and Yes are my answers. My son is now 7.5 years old and we have been trying for 3 years now. 5 miscarriages, 2 cancelled IVF cycles, 1 failed iui, 5 D&C’s and 1 hysteroscopy later, I am still part of that 30%! Actually, I’m 1% of women because I’ve had 5 losses.
I have a sister who I am very close to and want more then anything to give my son a sibling. Our streets are filled with families of 4, 5 and some even 6! Where do I fit in? Many people don’t understand the struggle because they think that I should be fulfilled, by number 1. Women and Men who are struggling with conceiving number 1 don’t always understand and many times underestimate my journey.
I’ve heard everything from “at least you have your son” to “Just Adopt.” Yes, that’s true, I do have my wonderful son and I love him dearly, but I want another child! Yes, Adoption is an option and that is so easy right?! NOT! I have thought about that for sure, but at this point I want to do everything I can to carry my child if all possible.
Secondary Infertility and miscarriage has brought on so many emotions. Everything from sadness, to guilt, to anger. I feel sad for all my miscarriages. 5 lost babies is 5 too many. I feel guilty for not being able to give my son a sibling and complete my family. I feel guilty for wanting another child when I already have one amazing child. I feel angry because my body is not working properly.
Since I’ve also been dealing with recurrent miscarriage this adds to the pain I am already feeling from my struggle with Secondary Infertility. Some of the comments and responses I have heard when sharing my journey can be very hurtful. Comments like……..”it wasn’t meant to be” or “It will happen when you stop trying” or here’s my favorite “G-d knew that there was something wrong with the baby.” Ummm….. PLEASE never say this to someone who has experienced a loss because G-d has nothing to do with my infertility and losses. My infertility is a medical condition and it’s all science. This isn’t a punishment from G-d. Don’t get me wrong, I believe in G-d and still pray and have faith and hope that one day I will get another baby, but I know G-d doesn’t pick and choose each person that is infertile, has a miscarriage, has a disease or goes through any type of loss. I can list a hundred more emotions and what not to say, but that list will be too long.
I just want to say this post isn’t intended to offend anyone. I am very fortunate to have a great support system. Sure I’ve had people say some of these things to me. Yes, even those who I love dearly. I know most people not dealing with infertility or miscarriage may not understand how deep my heartache is and they sometimes say things these things because they think it will be helpful to me. I know they are not trying to hurt me. Honestly there is nothing anyone can say or do to make me feel better. Sometimes the best thing to hear (For Me) is “I’m sorry” or offer a hug. If I unfriended everyone who has said something I don’t want to hear, I would have very little friends. I know that I have definitely said the wrong thing many of time and thought it would be helpful, not hurtful.
Also, I have learned that many people are very uncomfortable with the subject of infertility and miscarriage because of the stigma behind it. It’s sad honestly that still to this day there is a stigma. I’m not ashamed. I wish we can shed the taboo of miscarriage and infertility. Being in the 1 percentile of women who have had recurrent miscarriages makes it very hard not to feel alone. If you have had a miscarriage at all, know you are NOT alone. In fact, 25% of pregnancies end in a miscarriage. That’s 1 in 4! Unfortunately, many going through this struggle do not share their experience or heartache. After 5 losses and 3 years of trying, I am very open with my journey and finally feel comfortable to share with everyone my struggles. I have learned the more I talk about it, the better I feel and have found many times, that people open up and share their experience with me. Many times, they will help me or vice versa. Hopefully one day, this Stigma will disappear and we can stand up and talk freely about our journey’s. I am not the poster child of infertility and miscarriage by any means, but I will share this journey with you and hopefully along the way it will help someone. I know it helps me personally to share my story.
Love and Baby Dust,