Saturday, July 7, 2012

Infertility Etiquette

So I've found a lot of articles lately about infertility etiquette and things not to say to people that are considered to be infertile. Yes, I did have a pregnancy, but it didn't have an outcome of a baby that I could hold in my arms, so I am still considered to be infertile and will be going through infertility treatments again to get the baby I deserve in my arms. Anyways, I found an article today that I really love through RESOLVE which is a national infertility organization. The link for the article is Infertility Etiquette and I'm going to highlight the points below and my thoughts on them (not all of them apply to our case, but they may apply to others).

1. Don't tell them to relax - this is probably one of the worst things someone can say to me. If you've ever been through this, you would know it's not possible to just relax, no it's not going to happen if I just relax. "Couples who are able to conceive after a few months of "relaxing" are not infertile...The woman feels like she is doing something wrong when, in fact, there is a good chance that there is a physical problem preventing her from becoming pregnant." Relaxing will honestly do me no good. I DO NOT ovulate on my own. We don't know if I ever will, guess what? It takes ovulation to make a baby!

2. Don't minimize the problem - this just kind of goes with the relaxing point above. Unfortunately, there is a problem, I wish there wasn't one, but there is. Yes, we know what comes with having a child, it doesn't make us feel better when you say "take advantage of sleeping in while you can" and anything else because honestly, I'd rather be getting no sleep right now than be childless. 

3. Don't say there are worse things that could happen - how would this possibly be comforting? "To a woman whose sole goal in life has been to love and nurture a child, infertility may indeed be the "worst" thing that could happen." Having a miscarriage for me was the worse thing that could have happened after going through 24 months of fertility treatments. The fact I have to go through infertility treatments again is definitely not ideal.

4. Don't say they aren't meant to be parents - Honestly I can't believe people would say this. "If God were in the business of divinely sterilizing women, don't you think he would prevent the pregnancies that end in abortions? Or wouldn't he sterilize the women who wind up neglecting and abusing their children? Even if you aren't religious, the "maybe it's not meant to be" comments are not comforting. Infertility is a medical condition, not a punishment from God or Mother Nature." Even though at times I feel that I'm being punished.

5. Don't ask why they aren't trying IVF - Well we are, so this wouldn't bother me. But I know it does bother people when they're going through the other treatments, because we've been there, done that. And here we are, IVF. 

6. Don't be crude - this should just go without saying...

7. Don't Complain About Your Pregnancy - this is the BIGGEST problem I'm having right now after my miscarriage. It bothered me before I got pregnant, but the way it bothers me now is way worse! I want to be puking. I want to be unbelievably uncomfortable in this hot summer we're having. I want to have the glucose testing and every other thing pregnant women complain about. So please, think about someone going through infertility treatments or someone who's suffered a miscarriage before you complain about your pregnancy "problems." "You have every right to vent about the discomforts to any one else in your life, but don't put your infertile friend in the position of comforting you. Your infertile friend would give anything to experience the discomforts you are enduring because those discomforts come from a baby growing inside of you. When I heard a pregnant woman complain about morning sickness, I would think, "I'd gladly throw up for nine straight months if it meant I could have a baby." When a pregnant woman would complain about her weight gain, I would think, 'I would cut off my arm if I could be in your shoes.'"

8. Don't treat them like they are ignorant - we are not ignorant! We know how much responsibility is involved in parenthood! We're going through all these treatments because we know that and want a child. "The length of time you spend waiting for that baby does not factor in to your appreciation of responsibility. If anything, people who have been trying to become pregnant longer have had more time to think about those responsibilities."

9. Don't gossip about your friend's condition - I don't mind people telling other people what we're going through, I'm completely open about it, but remember that many others are not. Plus gossiping does nobody good. 

10. Don't push adoption (yet) - Yes, we know this is an option but please do not push this yet. We are trying everything in our power to have biological children before we will consider adoption. Since we aren't to the point where we're considering adoption, I'll skip the last couple of points. We now know that I can get pregnant which is a big step forward for us. I'm hoping that we will have a biological baby in our arms in no time, but there's not a definite, and we know that. Just please support us in all of our decisions. 

Please keep these in mind, we would greatly appreciate it as well as anyone else you may know going through infertility treatments. It's a hard thing to go through. People that have never gone through the treatments simply won't understand what we're going through, so please try to remember that. There is etiquette when it comes to almost anything, this is the infertility etiquette. 


  1. This article helps couples struggling with infertility know where to go to get help for financing their treatments. Getting pregnant can cost a lot of money when couples suffer from infertility but the good news is, there is lots of help out there available.

    Infertility Clinic