Heads Up: Infertility Sounds Like a Scam to Your Boss

It’s tough to be going through fertility treatments under any circumstances. It’s extremely tough going through fertility treatments while you have a full-time job. Infertility itself is a full-time job. There are things you have to do in the morning, in the afternoon, and at night. There are things you have to do on the weekends. Sometimes you even have to go to the doctor’s office on a weekend. You don’t call the shots. (Pun?) Your doctors and your ovaries call the shots. (Pun?) Everything during treatments has to be done when it has to be done. Not the day after. Not on Saturday instead of Tuesday. Most employers don’t want to hear it. And I’ll have to admit: To someone who hasn’t been through it, like your boss, infertility sounds like a scam.


Infertility Sounds Like a Scam: Exhibit A:

“Okay, so you had to come in late today. But you’ll be in on time tomorrow, right?”

“That’s a tough one. It depends. You see I have to wait until the nurse calls me to see if I have to go back tomorrow morning…and she won’t call me until tonight…when you’re already gone for the day.”

Even the employers who are trying to be understanding,… we’re really trying their patience.

Infertility Sounds Like a Scam: Exhibit B:

“Okay, so you took off Wednesday afternoon. So, Wednesday’s are good for you to go to your appointments. That’s perfect. I can just get someone to cover your Wednesday afternoons until your treatments are over.”

“Well, no. You see they check my blood and my uterine lining and then they’ll call me to let me know if I have to alter my shots…let me back up…you see, every night I have to give myself hormone shots in my stomach with a pen and the nurse tells me if I have to dial the pen up or down and whether I have to come back the next day or the day after that.”

Luckily, the boss hasn’t heard a word you’ve said since “my uterine lining” otherwise they would probably think your issues aren’t about fertility-related illness nearly as much as they’re about mentally-related illness.

Or, if we don’t give too many details because we’re trying to maintain some sort of privacy…forget it. We tease them with this convoluted story that sounds like a pot-induced hallucination of having to be off at this time on this day but next week everything will change, and we can’t give any notice because we won’t know until the last minute… Now we’re going to be all cloak and dagger and leave out the nitty gritties and expect someone we work for to just go along?

Infertility Sounds Like a Scam: Exhibit C:

“So, I have to go to an appointment tomorrow morning.”

“You mean a doctor’s appointment?”

“Well let’s just say it’s an appointment.”

“What kind of an appointment? It’s a job interview isn’t it?”

“It’s not a job interview.”

“If it’s not a job interview, what’s the big deal? Why can’t you just say it’s a doctor’s appointment if it’s a doctor’s appointment?”

“It’s an appointment. My husband’s coming with me. He’s taking off also.”

“Oh…your husband…It’s one of those appointments. I’m sorry, I can’t give you time off to have sex with your husband.”

“It’s a dental appointment. Okay? Let’s just say I’m going to the dentist. I have this tooth, you see it? Not that one. The one behind it… Way bach heeah?”


(I really appreciate you taking time to stop by! If you’d like more laughs at infertility’s expense (specifically, my personal infertility journey’s expense) I’d love for you to take a look at my eBook: Laughing IS Conceivable: One Woman’s Extremely Funny Peek into the Extremely Unfunny World of Infertility.

It’s been downloaded by 1000s of infertility patients, partners, emotional support, & medical professionals looking for fun, fast-reading to help make some sense of all of this infertility insanity. 4.5 stars/ 66 reviews on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com//dp/B007G9X19A  – Also available on Nook and Kobo.)


3 thoughts on “Heads Up: Infertility Sounds Like a Scam to Your Boss

  1. So stressful doing IVF when you work full time. I have to say, though, my boss at the time was very good about the appointments. I decided to just go to her and sit down and tell her that I was doing IVF. She had a surreal reaction – she jumped up and yelled “congratulations!” and “Oh I’m so pleased”, whilst hugging me: exactly as if I’d said I was having a baby. We had never mentioned the topic of pregnancy before so it was all very strange and completely inappropriate. I remember thinking as I watched her grinning away at me: “But it’s not a good thing. Have you seen the success rates for IVF lately?”. I honestly just think she was just clueless about it all. But then again, who isn’t, apart from us lot and the doctors.

    1. I love this story! It kind of covers all of the reactions we get. From good to bad to ridiculous. It sounds like one of those hormonal surge moments I’ve had where I completely lose my barometer of what an appropriate response looks like. Thanks!

  2. You need to get a female boss who knows the drill 🙂 I lucked out and had a great boss who arranged my schedule so I could have my planning period in the morning. No sub necessary.

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