The Lonely World of Infertility {Infertility Awareness}

Eleven months and one hundred and ninety-six injections. Those are just two of the numbers that helped to create our family. Our infertility journey began in 2009. I delivered our son Harrison in 2011. We started a new journey in 2012, and I delivered our daughter Libby in 2013. It’s 2014, and I am starting the infertility journey again – for the third time in five years.

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There are some days I’ve convinced myself that I’m crazy for doing this for a third time. The third time means more waiting in awkward waiting rooms, more of sitting there hopeful in exam rooms for ultrasounds only to be disappointed by follicle sizes, more injections {and icing my already scarred and stretch mark filled stomach}, and more phone calls back-and-forth between the nurses at my doctor’s office. Starting this journey again involves more of everything, including feeling lonely.

For me, loneliness is one of the hardest aspects of going through fertility treatments. Loneliness trumps the awful side effects of Clomid, Follistim, Ovidrel, and progesterone. Loneliness wins over many of the hopeful moments before I receive another phone call from the nurse informing me that yet another cycle failed. Loneliness is the only feeling I have after that phone call. It’s present when I’m the only one awake, late at night, standing in our kitchen icing my stomach and preparing another injection. The loneliness doesn’t go away.

What is going away is the silence that surrounds infertility, and I am proud to be part of that movement. Fertility awareness is on the rise. Support groups exist on Facebook and through your doctor’s office. There are even national fertility walks to help raise awareness and amazing women such as those at Houston Moms Blog who are helping to spread the word about infertility!

Women diagnosed with fertility issues are also opening up on a more personal level and talking about their struggle with friends, family, and even co-workers. Thank you to those women. You are brave. You are strong. You are loved. You are amazing. I am one of the lucky ones because I have you! You are fighting for each of us and helping us to feel a little less lonely going through this process.

Here are a few ways you can help someone struggling with infertility ::

  • Let them know that you’re there to support them anyway that you can. A very simple, “I can’t pretend to understand what you’re going through, but know that I’m here to listen whenever you need to talk” will lift their spirits on the gloomiest of days.
  • If you find out you’re expecting, please do not hide it. I promise that as difficult as it can be to hear, we would rather hear it directly from you rather than find out on Facebook or through another friend. I am genuinely excited for you to become a mother!
  • Plan a girls’ night out! There’s nothing better than going out and unwinding with friends to take your mind off of the doctor’s appointments or two-week wait anxiety.
  • If you know they are having a difficult time, send flowers or a greeting card. Simple gestures go a long way!
  • If there are other children in the family, offer to babysit during doctor appointments or meet us at the doctor’s office to help with the children.

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In honor of National Infertility Awareness Week, we are dedicated to raising awareness and educating our community about the varying types of infertility and the many options available.  Our hope is that this series will open your eyes and inspire you in a really dynamic way, so please join us as real local moms open up and share their stories all throughout the week.  To read more, please click here.

Lane BioAbout Lane G.

Lane is originally from New Orleans and lives in Pearland with her husband and two children. In addition to being a wife and mom, she is the co-founder of Bayou City Mamas, a Houston area mom’s group. She welcomes anyone who is struggling with infertility or has questions to contact her at [email protected]

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One Response to The Lonely World of Infertility {Infertility Awareness}

  1. Avatar
    Ebbe April 30, 2014 at 1:18 pm #

    Thank you for the article. I am in my third year of going through tubal infertility, this has been the most challenging event in my life but I keep my trust and faith in God. I am grateful for my friends and family who support me with prayers and words of encouragement. Thank you for your story which has encouraged me and to anyone out there going through this difficulty, please do not let anyone shame you into thinking that you are less of a woman, you are a going to be an even better mother because of all the pain and suffering. Keep your head up, take care of your spirit and your body, continue to be the best wife/partner, daughter, sister, niece and friend that you are to all those who love you. God’s time is the best and He will see you through.

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