“Just don’t think about it.”
“It will happen when the time is right.”
“When are you having kids?”
“Most people try as soon as they get married.”
“Don’t you want kids?”
“Why hasn’t it happened yet?”
These harmless inquiries should be just that- harmless. They shouldn’t feel like daggers, but in reality, they do.
Day after day, week after week you’ve changed diets, stopped caffeine and alcohol, started exercising more. You’ve pray, timed sex for the perfect day, and you’ve painfully waited. You buy ovulation tests, pre-natals, pregnancy tests, the basal body thermometers, everything and anything you can buy to feel “ready”. This has got to be our month! But, there’s a quiet whisper in your head reminding you of the cycle.
Month after month it’s the same cycle over and over again. Period, scheduled sex, but make it “spontaneous”, the two week wait where you swear to God these cramps have to be implantation cramps, and finally, and worst of all, the negative test that bring the waves of tears mourning a pregnancy that wasn’t even there.
Then the cycle starts all over.
You feel so devoured by trying that it starts to shake you from the inside.
Then the questions start to surround your every thought.
“Why isn’t this easy?”
“Am I the only one who isn’t pregnant?”
“If I’m a woman and I can’t get pregnant does that make me a failure?”
“What else can I do… I’ve done everything.”
“Maybe I’m not supposed to be a mother…”
You’ve talked to your Gynecologist, and she informs you that happy healthy couples can take up to a year to conceive, even longer when you’ve been on birth control. It’s a comforting thought for a few silent moments, but then you wonder if this is normal, why does it hurt so much? Why does it steal your breath away and make your heart throb every. single. month.?
Why do I feel so alone?
No one every told me that this wasn’t going to be easy. No one ever told me how much I would crave motherhood. No one ever told me how fragile fertility really is.
But I’m here to tell you that we’re not alone.
The reality is, 6.1 million families in the United States alone struggle with infertility.
The reality is, about half of those infertility issues come from women.
The reality is, about half of those infertility issues come from MEN.
The reality is 1 in 8 women have PCOS and while not every women who has this is infertile, many are.
The reality is 1 in 10 women have endometriosis, which can cause infertility.
The reality is YOU are not alone in this. I want to tell you that it’s okay to feel overwhelmed, upset, distraught. It’s okay to take a break from the obsessive ovulation testing, the temperature tracking, dare I even say the pregnancy test taking. It’s okay to take a step back and give yourself time to breathe and refocus on your mental health.
The next time you start to put yourself down, remember this mantra:
I am not alone.
I am strong.
I am capable.
I WILL be a mother.
You are not alone. I see you. I understand you. And I stand with you.
The Fertility Project’s goal is to bring education about fertility and women’s health to every woman everywhere. Young and old; trying to conceive and trying to avoid pregnancy; daughters, mothers, and everyone in between. Every woman- together.