Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The things people say

Dear Rowan,
You can't imagine the stupid things people say to me concerning your absence. I try to forget most of the comments as soon as they are spoken because I don't want to clutter my brain with negativity. But some of them are too ignorant to forget.
I'm thinking of this now because a woman I met on Sunday at a Super Bowl party made me feel somehow unworthy of her attention after she found out I didn't have children.
The conversation went something like this:

"Hi, I'm Krista. I'm Sara's (that's the hostess) neighbor."

"Oh. I see. Do you have children?"



And, that was the last thing she said to me.

Just another little ding to my psyche.

Possibly the worst thing anyone ever said to me about infertility was during a vaginal ultrasound, performed at our base hospital by a very young man who seemed very uncomfortable with the whole procedure.

"Mmmm. Everything looks normal. You're ovulating. Do you have normal cycles?"

"Yes. Actually, I'm having this test done as part of a workup for an upcoming in-vitro fertilization cycle. We don't think I have any problems. My husband has low sperm count."

"Oh, well, that's an easy fix. Just leave your husband at home and go down to the Cal Bar on Friday night, have a few glasses of wine and see what happens. I bet you'd end up pregnant."

What an idiot!

The most hurtful things have come as a result of well-intentioned friends and family, who seem to think we must not be doing it right.

"Have you tried putting your legs up on the wall after sex?"

"You just need to relax and don't think about it. That's when I always got pregnant."

"You know, the key to making babies is that you can't make love. You have to fuck. I should know, I've had five kids."

Even my mom had some advice, "you have to let it soak in, honey. Don't jump up and run to the bathroom."

Unfortunately, when you're dealing with MFI, people tend to associate the inability to conceive with sexual dysfunction.

"Maybe Tony could give Greg some pointers on how to get the job done," one friend said.

"Well, honey, I don't know what to tell you except you should have taken a test drive before you signed the paperwork."

My mother-in-law found a way to ruffle my feathers even before we ever started trying to conceive. Out of the blue during a family dinner, she blurted out:

"I've looked into it. The only way you're ever getting pregnant is with IVF."

And, last, but certainly not least are the folks who have volunteered their husbands, boyfriends, brothers or themselves as potential donors.

"You wouldn't even need to go through all this, you could just use a turkey baster!"

I'm sure when you finally get here, Rowan, everyone will think it was their great advice that finally did the trick. In the mean time, I'm trying to ignore the stupid things people say and, of course, I'm trying to relax, because everyone knows that's how you get pregnant.


  1. People are ignorant.
    I have to tell.. I threw up a little when I read what your Mom said. Gross!! How did you respond to that?

  2. I just laughed. Understand that my mother is this very reserved little old Southern lady who never says anything out of the way. She won't even say the word "fart." ha ha ha.

  3. lol.. oh my so to hear her say that.. you must have almost passed out when she said it!

  4. Hey lady, visiting from the land of LFCA. We're also dealing with MFI & are trying a round of IVF/ICSI. People who have never faced infertility just don't understand...complete ignorance!