What is it with the infertility community at the moment? I’ve seen so much hate towards people who are in the process of achieving their dreams. I don’t understand – when did infertility become a competition?
I’ve heard Amy and I bitched about for it “only” taking twenty four cycles and two rounds of clomid. I’ve heard friends bitched about for it “only” taking one round of IVF, or for them having a surprise natural conception after not having a period for three years. I’ve heard people bitched about for “only” having one loss or none at all, or for being able to use their own gametes to make a baby rather than using donor materials. It amazes me that this community, who are so very supportive and wonderful during the days when you are really struggling, sometimes turn against those who reach the goal that we are all aiming for. I’ve even seen hatred towards people who have made the decision to stop trying and not try IVF and not go for adoption – that boggles my brain the most because that is one of the hardest and bravest decisions a couple can make in my opinion. I don’t see why someone should be hated on for ending their fertility journey.
Don’t get me wrong. I have been there. I have “muted” people on Twitter and Facebook after they have made a pregnancy announcement, and I think that looking after number one in these situations is really really important. My “mute” list on Facebook after we lost Squishy had about twenty people on it, because I had to protect my heart. It’s hard when you are just scrolling through Facebook and all of a sudden there is a scan picture or a picture of a positive pregnancy test. It sounds overdramatIc, but those things could legitimately ruin my day. I remember there was a particular announcement that I cried for three hours over. But my point is, none of this is the fault of the person who is pregnant. It’s not their fault that you’re stuck in the infertility trenches. That’s why I mute, because that person isn’t even aware that you have muted them.
I think that’s the overwhelming message here. I am respectful of my friends who are still struggling. I generally post scan pictures in the comments on Facebook, so that they don’t invade people’s timelines. I use the #pgpost tag on Twitter so that people can mute my pregnancy updates if they wish. As I said, it’s important to look after number one and I would never intentionally hurt someone. However, and this is the crux, do those who have achieved their dream not have the right to be happy?
We’re all aiming for the same thing here. Whether it is a natural conception, whether it takes two rounds of clomid, or one round of IVF, we are aiming for the same goal. I know how lucky I am to not be able to understand the pain of multiple failed IVFs or not being able to have children at all. But as we are all aiming for the same goal, I don’t get why there is such hatred towards those who achieve it from a small part of the community. Now that I’m pregnant, I hope the same happens for those still waiting. That hasn’t gone away. I still think of and speak to friends in the infertility community often, even those who have blocked me are in my thoughts and I hope every one of them reach an ending that they are happy with. We can’t judge other people by our own situation, because fact is there is always someone better off and always someone worse off.
Because let’s face it, whether we conceive through sex, clomid, injectables, donor materials, IVF, surrogacy, adoption or the decision is made to stop at any point in the journey and remain child free, we all deserve the same amount of respect. Everyone’s story is different, but that doesn’t make anyone’s more valued than anyone else’s. Let’s not hate on each other, because infertility is a bitch and those scars don’t just disappear because you become pregnant or end your journey in another way. The community is wonderful – let’s keep it that way by muting when we need to, looking after number one and not hating on people just because they achieved their dream. Infertility is the bitch here – let’s not be bitches towards one another.
(I borrowed the phrase “The Pain Olympics” from a wonderful friend)