I recently talked to an ex-boyfriend who is having marital issues. (You know it sounded normal to me until I just typed it.) He and his wife had been going through infertility issues for about ten years of their fourteen year marriage. Can you even separate infertility from your marriage at that point? Or is it like you think of infertility and you think of your marriage like they’re interchangeable? All I know is that these two didn’t talk to anybody who had been through infertility or join any online groups or support groups or anything. They kind of just kept it to themselves and told a few close friends / family members who, as we’ve all witnessed first-hand, usually either say nothing or the wrong thing just because they don’t know what the hell to say. I mean, who would know what to say? Even if you’ve been through it, it’s hard to know what to say to each individual sometimes.
So they kept it to themselves and now “themselves” is falling apart at the seams. Is infertility mostly to blame for that? Is keeping in touch with his ex-girlfriends to blame for that? Was asking his ex-girlfriend who’s been through infertility for advice on his marriage a good idea? Am I making this up as I go or was this a plot on Young and the Restless that’s been stuck in my head since high school?
Anyhoo… I get so upset that nowadays with all of the blogs and groups out there where you can remain anonymous that so many people going through infertility still keep it all to themselves… Oh, hypocritical me… That was me… You’d think someone with such a big mouth would have talked and talked and talked. But I didn’t. And if I were going through it right now, I’d probably do the same all over again. Not share. Not seek help or comfort. Truthfully there was no help where I lived: On Planet Total Denial.
How could I ask for help or advice or comfort when I didn’t acknowledge I had infertility issues? My husband and I would do the sex thing and the syringe thing and the doctor appointments three times a week thing month after month after month but I treated it all like I had a second job as a prostitute. You know, it was just something I felt I had to do. I didn’t really want to do it, I wasn’t proud of it, yet I wasn’t ashamed of it either. I just did it at night and in the wee hours of the morning and then I took a shower, put on business casual and went on with my day like it never happened. The only differences between doing fertility treatments and doing strange men: 1) I never got arrested for doing treatments. 2) I always came home with a lot less cash than I’d left with.
Maybe this image will be more palatable (Maybe not. It’s hard to tell with me): The whole time I did treatments, I was in dentist chair mode: “Can this be over already so I can just go on with my life?” I think somewhere in the recesses of my warped mind I thought: “Why would I want to talk to anybody about this? That will only prolong my time in the chair.” I didn’t want to acknowledge anything was wrong with me or that I couldn’t handle whatever was going on or that I might not ever have kids or that my father might not live to see a grandchild… and I never wanted to answer anybody’s questions or be the topic of gossip… so for months and months I just pulled up my fishnets, leaned against my pole, and shut the hell up. (And she’s out of the dentist chair and back on the streets.)
Thanks a lot for stopping by! I hope you feel at least a little bit better. If you’d like more of my nonsense at infertility’s expense, please sign up for my bimonthly newsletter.
http://laughingisconceivable.com (at the top of home page)
And please do take a look at my eBook (cover above):
Laughing IS Conceivable: One Woman’s Extremely Funny Peek into the Extremely Unfunny World of Infertility. The husband, waiting rooms, the nurses, answering services, the bills… None of them escape unscathed. Available on all Amazons, Nook, & Kobo. (Renowned fertility experts around the U.S. put their two cents in, in the “Look Inside” pages on Amazon.)