Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Infertility Awareness Week

This week is National Infertility Awareness Week, so I want to share some of my experiences with you.

There are many myths out there about infertility. I think the biggest one is that it is not common. Did you know that 1 in 8 couples have fertility issues? With statistics like that chances are you know someone who suffers from infertility.

Here are a few other myths:
~ Infertility means you can't get pregnant: this is true, but infertility also covers the repeated loss of pregnancy.

~ Infertility is a female condition: This is not true, of the couples suffering from infertility, approximately 17% are male factor cases.

~ If you get pregnant easily the first time you will not suffer from infertility: Secondary infertility is when you are able to get pregnant and have a baby and then can't get pregnant again.

I never knew what infertility even was until we decided we were ready to have a baby. As I was taught in school I figured all I needed to do was have unprotected sex and I would be pregnant. This in itself to me is a myth, but it is true for many couples. I thought it was true for us when we got pregnant only the 2nd month we tried. We were so excited, and kept the secret for about a week and announced it to all the family at Christmas. It was the best Christmas ever, until two weeks later when I started spotting. I hadn't even had my first OB appointment yet so they sent me for an Ultrasound to check on the pregnancy. There was a baby and it had a heartbeat of 94 bpm. To me this was a good sign, until 2 days later when I started cramping and they sent me for another ultrasound. This time the tech wouldn't show me the screen and I knew there was no heartbeat. I had prepared myself for the news already, but it was still devastating.

Doctors recommendations were to wait for my next cycle before we started crying again. This was fine with me, I needed time to mourn my loss. Again we made an incorrect assumption though. We thought that because we got pregnant so quickly the first time that within a cycle or two we would be pregnant again. Month after month we timed sex, I took my temperature, I used Ovulation Predictor Kits (OPKs), the cheap and the expensive and month after month a new cycle would begin. As we neared my due date for the first pregnancy I decided it was time to take a break. We were going to have sex for fun and if nothing happened I would schedule an appointment to start fertility testing. Not paying attention to my cycle turned out to be much harder than I anticipated so I made sure we were having timed sex. I wasn't even going to test because I was sure it was going to be negative. A few days after my original due date and a few days before our anniversary I decided to test anyway, after all it was becoming a habit. This time though, I didn't even look at the test. I made B go in the bathroom and look for me. I couldn't stand seeing another negative test. To my surprise he came back to the bedroom speechless and just shook his head yes. All of a sudden I was flooded with emotions. Joy, fear, excitement... I didn't know how I really felt.

For more information on infertility please visit http://www.resolve.org/infertility101 and http://www.resolve.org/takecharge. for more information on National Infertility Awareness Week® (NIAW)

1 comment:

  1. Well written. So many people do not realize how common infertility is. hairetyr


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