...my journey through the valleys and over the mountains as i learn to live with the 'new' reality of losing xavier ian. this is a place i can jot down thoughts, feelings, and things i am learning through this journey of life.

if my dreams came true...

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since the nightmare began...

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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

...in honor of national infertility week...and a challenge from lis...

disclaimer: i do not suffer from infertility, but lis sent out this challenge, so here i go...

myths and facts about infertility (with my opinion thrown in!) from RESOLVE

Myth: Infertility is a women's problem.
: This is untrue. It surprises most people to learn that infertility is a female problem in 35% of the cases, a male problem in 35% of the cases, a combined problem of the couple in 20% of cases, and unexplained in 10% of cases. It is essential that both the man and the woman be evaluated during an infertility work-up.

i actually did know this, but i agree that people generally think there's something wrong with the woman rather than the man and that's not true at all!

Myth: Everyone seems to get pregnant at the drop of a hat.
Fact: More than five million people of childbearing age in the United States experience infertility. When you seek support, you will find that you are not alone. Join RESOLVE, a support group, or talk with others who are struggling to build a family, so that you won't feel isolated.
michelle: i'm not naive enough to believe this, although we did get pregnant quickly with michael and as soon as michael stopped nursing we got pregnant with andi. xavier was a surprise, but apparently not meant to be this side of heaven.
Myth: It's all in your head! Why don't you relax or take a vacation. Then you'll get pregnant!
Fact: Infertility is a disease or condition of the reproductive system. While relaxing may help you with your overall quality of life, the stress and deep emotions you feel are the result of infertility, not the cause of it. Improved medical techniques have made it easier to diagnose infertility problems.
michelle: i've actually heard people say this and they are still not pregnant, so obviously it is a myth. although can you imagine if some resort decided to start advertising that if you took a vacation there you'd get pregnant...they could make quite a bit of money off a scam like that...

Myth: Don't worry so much -- it just takes time. You'll get pregnant if you're just patient.
Fact: Infertility is a medical problem that may be treated. At least 50% of those who complete an infertility evaluation will respond to treatment with a successful pregnancy. Some infertility problems respond with higher or lower success rates. Those who do not seek help have a "spontaneous cure rate" of about 5% after a year of infertility.
michelle: yeah, if you have an infertility problem then get some help...it makes sense. i didn't realize the 50% stat though.

Myth: If you adopt a baby you'll get pregnant!
Fact: This is one of the most painful myths for couples to hear. First it suggests that adoption is only a means to an end, not an happy and successful end in itself. Second, it is simply not true. Studies reveal that the rate for achieving pregnancy after adopting is the same as for those who do not adopt.
michelle: i've actually heard of a story like this. of course it was coincidental, but it made me wonder. it's good to see that it is only a myth. there are so many babies that need to be adopted, it's too bad it costs so much money.

Myth: Why don't you just forget it and adopt? After all, there are so many babies out there who need homes!
Fact: For many, adoption is a happy resolution to infertility. However, most people explore medical treatment for infertility prior to considering adoption. In addition, traditional adoption options have changed, and adoption can be more costly and time-consuming than expected. It is, however, still possible to adopt the healthy baby of your dreams. There are also many older children and children with special needs available for adoption.
michelle: i can't imagine someone telling someone who want to get pregnant that they should just adopt. yes, you would have a baby, but if your dream was to give birth you'll still feel a void. adoption is great, but needs to be wanted and accepted TOTALLY!

Myth: Maybe you two are doing something wrong!
Fact: Infertility is a medical condition, not a sexual disorder.
michelle: i have nothing to say to this except, "how dumb do you think someone is that they can't even have sex right?!"

Myth: My partner might leave me because of our infertility.
Fact: The majority of couples do survive the infertility crisis, learning in the process new ways of relating to each other, which deepens their relationship in years to follow.
michelle: if you really meant your marriage vows, then you are in it for better or for worse (with baby or without baby) and you'll be willing to work on your marriage. marriage is hard work!

Myth: Perhaps this is God's way of telling you that you two aren't meant to be parents!
Fact: It is particularly difficult to hear this when you are struggling with infertility. You know what loving parents you would be, and it is painful to have to explain to others that you have a medical problem.
michelle: seriously?! how could anyone say this to someone? anytime someone tells me that something is possibly God's way of telling me something i just want to hit them! first if God is trying to tell me something, let me figure it out on my own. secondly, don't make assumptions about what God is trying to tell me.

Myth: Infertility is nature's way of controlling population.
Fact: Zero population growth is a goal pursued in a time of world overpopulation, but it still allows for couples to replace themselves with two children. Individuals or couples can certainly elect the option to be child free or to raise a single child. Infertility, for those who desire children, denies them the opportunity to choose.
michelle: wow! that is harsh. i've never heard anyone say anything like this.

Myth: I shouldn't take a month off from infertility treatment for any reason... I just know that this next month will be THE one!
Fact: It is important periodically to reassess your treatment and your parenting goal. Continuity in treatment is important, but sometimes a break can provide needed rest and renewal for the next steps.
michelle: it makes sense that taking time off would be helpful, especially if you've been doing one treatment for awhile and it's not working. i mean, why continue something that isn't working for 'x' amount of time...that seems silly to me. think about cancer, does the doctor say, "here's the one treatment we have and we'll continue doing it until you are cured or die?" no. the doctor tries one treatment and if that doesn't work tries another and if that doesn't work keeps trying. yes, you shouldn't give up, but that doesn't mean you should continue doing something that isn't working.

Myth: I'll be labeled a 'trouble maker' if I ask too many questions.
Fact: The physician/patient team is important. You need to be informed about what treatments are available. What is right for one couple may not be right for another, either physically, financially, or emotionally. Don't be afraid to ask questions of your doctor.
A second opinion can be helpful. If needed, discuss this option with your physician.
michelle: if your doctor labels you a 'trouble maker' for asking too many questions, then it's time to get a new doctor!

Myth: I know I'll never be able to stop treatment until I have a pregnancy.
Fact: Pregnancy is not the only pathway to parenthood. You may begin to think more about parenthood than about pregnancy. You may long for your life to get back to normal. You may consider child free living or begin to think of other ways to build a family.
michelle: imagine losing the baby. then i'm guessing that you will never be able to stop until you have a living baby. yes, there are other ways to parenthood, but again if your dream is to give birth you'll possibly have to accept parenthood without birth.

Myth: I've lost interest in my job, hobbies, and my friends because of infertility. No one understands! My life will never be the same!
Fact: Infertility is a life crisis -- it has a rippling effect on all areas of your life. It is normal to feel a sense of failure that can affect your self-esteem and self-image. You will move through this crisis. It is a process, and it may mean letting go of initial dreams. Throughout this process, stay informed about the wide range of options and connect with others facing similar experiences.
michelle: i'm sure it's just like everything else. it seems impossible while you're in it, but you will come through and have stories to tell and hopefully be a better person for it. AND if you have a positive outcome all the more you'll appreciate your baby!


  1. thank you for supporting and shedding some light on this topic for us, i am ever grateful! and also i am glad i found your blog! subscribing now and so sad to hear about your son...us BLMs do have a way of finding each other don't we?


  2. Michelle, thank you so much for stopping by my blog to introduce yourself and your son Xavier. My heart feels for you and all you are dealing with right now with loss and in your marriage. Please know I too have dealt with issues in my own marriage since losing our son Calvin and that I expect it is more common then you and I know. I look forward to reading your blog and following your journey in the aftermath of Xavier's loss. From one mommy to another...Hugs