Feelings Matter

Don’t Ignore…Your Feelings.

As I’ve mentioned previously, this week is National Infertility Awareness Week.  It is brought to us by RESOLVE.

RESOLVE’s goal is to increase the conversation about infertility and to inform the public that:

  • Infertility is a disease that affects 1 in 8 couples of reproductive age
  • There are many ways to build a family 
  • Help reduce the stigma by bringing attention to the details/issues/costs surrounding all ways people diagnosed with infertility can build a family.
  • Understand when to seek the help of a specialist

Something that I want people to understand is that, as a woman that’s been infertile for close to a decade, I have feelings, even if I don’t show them.

You see, over the years, I’ve gotten REALLY good at pushing my feelings away in order to not make those around me feel uncomfortable.  But you know what?  That gets really tiring.

Sometimes, I need to actually FEEL my feelings rather than hide them.

I need friends and family to realize that I hurt.

Yes, I am {eventually} happy for them every time they announce another pregnancy, but at the same time that I want to show them excitement, I also want to throw up because, once again, I’ve been passed by.

Year after year, month after month, day after day, I’m being passed by.

I WANT to feel happiness and excitement and the thrill of anticipation, but most of the time, I feel like I’ve been punched in the gut, anxious, nervous, hurt, sad, angry…none of it geared towards them, but for myself and my body which has failed and betrayed me so many times over.

Every month I don’t even bother taking a pregnancy test.  I quit doing that years ago.  Admittedly, on the longer cycles when I have no idea what is going on with my body, I have peed on a stick just for peace of mind, but knowing that I won’t ever see that second line.  Taking the tests though, and seeing a negative, just is too painful so I don’t bother putting myself through that.

Every month, I try with everything in me to not have hope, but on the rare occasion that I do let myself dream, I think of all of the ‘what-ifs’.  How would I react to a positive pregnancy test?  How would I tell Kyle?  How would I tell our friends and family?  What would it be like to actually be pregnant, go into labor, give birth and finally hold my very own baby in my arms?  Honestly, while I rarely let myself think those things, I do sometimes but it hurts too much so I quickly push those thoughts away.  Squashed before I ever get past the positive test.

ALL of my friends have kids.  Every. Single. One. Of. Them.  Most of them have more than one.  I know that they try to understand my feelings and where I’m coming from, but they really have no clue.  They don’t know the pain and hurt that I feel every single day of my life.

My family tries to get it, too, but they don’t.  Most of the time when I say something about someone else’s baby or pregnancy {as in, “did you hear, blah blah blah} I get blank stares and/or pity looks.  They want to understand, I think, but again, they just don’t.

My feelings matter though!

I need to remember that when I feel like hiding from them and everyone around me.

My feelings matter and I need my family and friends to remember that.  I need them to ask me every now and then how I’M doing.

When it comes to Infertility though, I know that instead of talking about it, people, my friends and family, shy away from it because they just don’t know what to say.  They don’t want to offend me or make me feel badly so instead of saying the “wrong” thing, they say nothing at all.  Which, if I’m being honest, a lot of times I don’t actually mind that because it does hurt so much to talk about, but at the same time I DO wish that they’d try to get past the “I’m Fine” attitude that I put forth most of the time.

I’m pretty sure I’ve said enough things about “Infertility Etiquette” over the years that most of the time, the stupid comments do not flow from the mouths of people I know and love.  However, from strangers, yeah, I still get the stupid, ridiculous comments all. the. time.

“Just relax”
“Why don’t you just adopt?”
“Go get drunk, then you’ll get pregnant.”
“Go on vacation.”
“How come you haven’t done IVF?”
“Maybe God has other plans for you?”
“You can have my kids, they’re driving me nuts!  Are you sure you want this?”
“Hey, enjoy your sleep, travels, etc while you can!”

And the comments go on and on and on. People can just be so rude and dense sometimes.

Yes, these things HURT me.  What I wouldn’t give to have a baby of my own.  I’d give anything.  People that say these dumb things just are completely clueless or mean.  I understand that a lot of times people mean well, and generally I try to give them the benefit of the doubt, but that doesn’t mean their words don’t make me want to run to the bathroom and cry.

Once again, my feelings matter, and people that say these things are not taking my feelings into consideration.

I want people to consider their words before saying these hurtful things to someone that’s living through infertility.

Because OUR Feelings Matter.

{Via}


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To learn more about infertility and NIAW, visit these links provided by RESOLVE, below:

http://www.resolve.org/infertility101  (Basic understanding of the disease of infertility.)
http://www.resolve.org/national-infertility-awareness-week/about.html (About NIAW)

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Comments

  1. Thank you for posting this, I feel like I could have written it myself. I agree, I think sometimes people don’t know what to say so they say nothing at all. It would be nice if someone besides my husband or mom would ask how I’m feeling every now and then. This is a lonely road, but at least for me it has shown me the people in my life who truly care and really those are the only ones that matter.

  2. Sorry guys! IntenseDebate just hates me or something. Maybe one day I’ll figure out why. In the meantime I’ll just paste the previous comments that were deleted.

    Katy commented on Feelings Matter – http://meganswishingwell.blogspot.com/:

    THANK YOU!!!! I laughed and cried the whole way through this post. I just found your blog on google and I’m so glad I did. I was diagnosed with PCOS when I was 17 and have been having trouble getting pregnant for almost 5 years now. It was wonderful to see someone so open and honest and telling the world exactly how it feels! Those stupid comments you listed… I’ve had everyone of them too! It’s amazing how many people just dont know what to say. Some times my husband even gets it wrong. You are such a wonderful example of speaking out when sometimes it’s hard to. So Thank you

    Linda commented on Feelings Matter – http://meganswishingwell.blogspot.com/:

    I love you Megan. And I want you to know that I am still praying for you. Thanks for posting these things…about your feelings, and it does help me so much to understand better what infertile couples go through. (Although nobody can totally understand if they haven’t lived it.) It just stinks, and I know it hurts you so very much, and I am so sorry that you have gone through this for such a long time… and I wish I could take away your pain honey.

    ((Hugs)),

    Linda @ Truthful Tidbits

  3. I too just found your blog and I love it. I especially love this post. I have had 5 IVF’s – four of these using donor eggs. We have now decided to try and learn to live life child free. It’s been a tough year to say the least.

    I struggle with being ignored by friends and family regarding my infertility. When I do bring it up, boy you can see the discomfort this subject brings to them. I don’t ever get asked how I am doing. It’s sad. I have the greatest husband but even he tends not to ask how I am doing as he thinks it will make me think about it. I’ve tried to tell him, that I always think about it – whether I am happy or sad. I just want to feel like people actually do care about my feelings – as they do matter!!

  4. Wow..I cant even tell you how much I related.
    Just the other day my sister in law told me about a girl “who just prayed and prayed and prayed about getting pregnant…and magically it just happened”…left me feeling so hurt. She didnt mean to upset me of course…but left me feeling like my prayers werent good enough or something…this stuff really hurts sometimes…and its okay to admit it.
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts!

  5. I so needed to read this right now. I’m having a hard time “pushing those feelings away” right now. Lots of new pregnancies and births all around me. Thank you for posting!!!!

  6. So to say I came across your blog by divine intervention would probably be pushing it. I googled infertility blogs and yours was near the top of the list and your title made me smile. I’ve just come from having yet another hard conversation where I started breaking down with my mother since my younger sister (18) is pregnant by accident and is planning her shower. I don’t have much of a support network that can understand what I’m going through, and while I’ve not been to a doctor yet, mainly due to insurance reasons, I can’t help but fear the worst as two years have crawled by with no protection and no positive tests. You don’t realize how much those things cost until you buy enough of them to build a small Ethiopian village, huh? I don’t like to talk to my family about it, especially with all the happiness over my sister, and my poor husband has to deal with me all the rest of the time without piling my own insecurities and disheartening thoughts. I was just looking I suppose for someone I might talk to, might find someone who understood and who really -got- where I was coming from. Obviously I haven’t had to deal with the sentencing just yet, but I’ve already lived it millions of times in my head. I really want to thank you for your post here. I’m sure it’s one of many that would touch me so. It was the exact same thoughts I was just having in my own mind, and to hear them spun out on the blogosphere was really … well.. at least gratifying..to know I’m not the only one who thinks these things. So..I guess just thank you.. and if you ever have the time, I’m sure I’d love to talk with you a bit more.

    Thank you again,
    Mrs. White
    ♥♥
    http://littlehomemadehousewife.blogspot.com/
    1035kwhite{at}gmail{dot}com

  7. @Embellished Bayou Agreed! It’s nice to know your friends care and when they ask how things are is when you know that they do, even if they don’t have the “right” words.

    @Katy I’m glad I could make you laugh. Sorry you’ve been on such a long road TTC, too. And thank you. I’m glad I can be a voice of infertility and help others in our position along the way.

    @Linda Thanks Linda! Love you too! Even if you don’t always know what to say, just being an ear and shoulder and sending prayers helps! <3

    @Kellie I’m sorry you know this pain too, and even more so than me being that you’ve been through so much treatment. I’m sorry that your friends don’t ask how you’re doing as well. 🙁 If it makes you feel any better, my hub doesn’t ask how I’m doing either. (((HUGS)))

    @Bri wow, yeah. If only our prayers we the answer, we’d all be pregnant before we knew it! (((HUGS))) for you too!

    @Lindsey I completely understand. It seems every day I hear of a new pregnancy or birth. It hurts, I know. (((HUGS)))

    @Mrs. White I’m sorry you know this pain, too. I’m here to vent and cry to any time you want, just email me megancarlson@gmail.com. (((HUGS))) I’m glad that my post could make you feel a bit sane in the TTC craziness!

  8. Megan,

    Thank you so much for sharing your story. I am able to relate on many levels. I have been silent and have been trying to conceive…honestly since 2007ish, but I have yet to admit to my doctor, friends, (or even mention to family) because I am too afraid of the pressure from them.
    In fact your blog has validated all of my feelings and for the first time I have let myself cry. I am a caregiver. I am a teacher. I love my students, but I am not looking forward to this next year.
    Close to half of my coworkers have children under the age of five…all conceived while I have been silently trying. At work it’s the fine line of awe for their children and envy. I feel that I have lost the stoic grace to politely handle the comments and questions. Such as, “Now I have to go home to my second job of being a mom.”
    I wish and pray for this opportunity. Thank you for helping me to realize that I need to break the silence…just thinking about talking about it makes the thoughts of returning to a job I love less stressful.

    I am grateful for you and your voice on your journey.

    Many blessings,
    Randi

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