Friday, November 11, 2016

When Someone Else goes through Treatment

How do I respond when someone I know is going through fertility treatments?

It feels kind of awkward.

On one hand I want to say, "Good luck!" but on the other hand I don't want to be the reminder that sometimes (or, as we all know- often) it doesn't work out.

A wife of one of my husband's good friends is going through treatment right now. She posted about it on facebook and asked for prayers. The comments were hard for me to read. They ranged from "You got this! You deserve it!" to " God is good. He will bless your family." to "I know it's hard but it is worth it. Having children is the most rewarding thing in life."

And I have... Lots of thoughts about all of those comments.

But I will keep those thoughts to myself, not share them with my friend obviously.

But I think people have the misconception that fertility treatments work. Often, if not all the time. And we know that they work... Rarely.

So I would like to support her, but I don't know how. Then again, I probably can't support her right now. Last year one of my best friends was going through IVF. I told her that I loved her very much and wished her the best but I wasn't able to be the friend to her that I wanted to be at that time, that I still needed space from the world of fertility treatments. Spoiler: She didn't get pregnant. :(

And I am probably still there. I just can't hear about the appointments and the medications and the procedures and the updates. I'm not there yet. And it's not really a goal of mine to ever get there. If it happens, it happens. But I'm not really concerned about it.

But the most awkward part is that I feel like I am the reminder nobody wants, that you can try everything and still not get pregnant. So I don't even know if any good wishes from me would be welcome or well received. (Well, she is a pretty amazing person, so she would probably accept my sentiments lovingly and sincerely. But others? I'm not so sure...)

I am definitely hoping for the best for her. I guess I will do it from a distance.


  1. I know I am the reminder that nobody wants.

    1. It's such a weird feeling, right? Hopefully we show others that life after infertility can still be good, fun, and fulfilling.

  2. Hi Phoenix. Good topic. I think about this a lot. I love your description "I am the reminder nobody wants". I have felt like this so many times. It's a bit of a conundrum. I don't know anyone in my actual life at the moment who is having fertility treatment, but even when I wish people good luck online, I think: "Do they think I'm a fraud?" - because I write about how the IVF industry gives people false hopes, and how doctors should tell people upfront how low their chances are. So I think: Can I in good faith wish people well when I'm like their angel of doom? When I was TTC I had another friend who was going through the same stuff and when I decided I had had enough, I could see the fear and distaste on her face and she pleaded with me to try new treatments etc. She ended up pregnant and we haven't seen each other since she had her baby. It's such a weird situation.
    I'm not sure how well I could support a friend now if a friend was going through it. If I'm honest, part of me would want that friend to say "Do you know what, I'm gonna stop. I think people are fine without children!". I suppose everyone looks for solidarity and wants their own life validating. I think sometimes, "what's wrong with wanting them to be the same as me? Is my life so crap that I can't do that and I have to hope against hope that they get their baby?". That makes me sound really callous, but at the end of the day, what's wrong with that really? Fellow mothers relate to each other, of course people without kids relate to each other in the same way. I'm glad that some of my friends have children, but I think thank god that some don't, like me. Otherwise I really would feel like an outsider. I hope I've made sense and not come across as a bastard or irrelevant to the subject! Good post.

    1. You did not come off poorly in your comment, Different Shores. :) You are safe here. I've found that when other people go through fertility treatments it brings up a lot of stuff for me. The person I wrote about in this post just wrote a long post on fb about all the injections and the difficult journey. I feel for her. She is one of those absolutely amazing people and I hope the best for her. I don't want her to know my pain. But I also can't read her posts right now, and I definitely can't read the comments. It's a weird topic, a weird situation, and it honestly just sucks. I have to keep moving forward in my own life and see who sticks around and is along for the ride with me. (Now I don't know if I'm making sense hahaha.) Like I already said, it's all so weird and it brings up a lot of stuff.