Miserable after I failed IVF #6 and wanted to share this

(10 posts)(9 voices)
  1. I just failed my 6th IVF and of course am beside myself once again. Of course there are people in my life who have no idea how to support me and no conception of what I am going through. It hurts me so much more and adds to the pain of the failure. I decided to send out an email and I wanted to share it w/anyone who might choose to do the same. I sent out an email saying:

    Hi, This note is sent to the people I care about that are probably very confused and have no idea what I am going through.
    I thought it might be helpful information, and might explain. I know that if I wasn't going through it myself there would be no way I could possibly have any idea of the pain and suffering involved.

    Here is another interesting article: Please copy and paste to your browser:

    Thank you for taking the time to read this.
    And if you don't have the time, that's okay too.
    Love, Me

    Here it is:

    Some information about infertility:

    The Emotional Crisis of Infertility
    Sir William Osler, a famous physician, once said that human beings have two basic desires - to get and to beget. To have your own family is a universal dream. This dream can become a nightmare for the infertile couple and learning that you have an infertility problem can cause painful and difficult emotions. Infertility is like a chronic illness that uses up a large amount of a couples' resources - emotional and financial - and involves the expenditure of a considerable amount of time, money, physical and emotional energy.
    Everyone\'s response to infertility is different depending on individual situations, emotional strengths, coping methods and personality. You will be confronted with the emotional impact of infertility before, during, and after treatment. It is better to prepare yourself for these difficult periods, so that with emotional support and mental preparation, you can successfully reduce the potential pain of infertility.
    Discovering that You Have an Infertility Problem
    Although you may have friends who have experienced infertility and you're aware that it is a common disorder, the news that you are affected by it is almost always unexpected. As you examine the issues surrounding infertility, you may find yourself experiencing some uncomfortable emotions. Some of the most common ones are:
    In most cases, infertility is not diagnosed until after one year of unsuccessfully trying to conceive. Because of this, you may suspect that you have a problem before finding out for sure. For many couples, infertility is very difficult to accept. Most couples initially respond with feelings of shock and disbelief. After planning for years to have a child "one day", you may feel that your life's plan has been put on hold. These feelings generally only last for a short while and are not emotionally harmful when you recognize and address them.
    Another part of the emotional process is often denial. You and your partner may find yourselves saying. "This can't be happening to us," and; rather than confronting infertility, you may choose to deny the problem. However, this phase serves an important purpose and allows you to adjust to an overwhelming situation at your own pace as you work at resolving your infertility. Denial is only unhealthy if it lasts for a prolonged period and prevents you from accepting the reality of infertility.

    For some women, denial also leads to fantasising - and they dream of what life would be like with a child. They feel that all their problems would be solved if they got pregnant. They lose touch with reality and everytime they start treatment, they think they are going to conceive. They find it difficult to cope when it fails.
    Sadness and depression
    The number of losses associated with infertility makes depression a very common response. In addition to the loss of a baby, infertility represents the loss of fulfilling a dream and the loss of a relationship that you might have had with a child. What you are mourning for is the absence of experience - and this type of sadness can be especially hard to deal with. You and your partner may have even more difficulty dealing with these losses because friends and family often underestimate the emotional impact of infertility - and you have no one to talk to. The nature of infertility is such that you may never know definitely whether you are able to conceive or what is causing the problem. Your grief therefore has nothing to focus on - and there is the continual hope that "this will be the time" which can leave your emotions painfully suspended, creating a continual "hoping against hope" attitude. When someone dies, the death brings family and friends together to grieve the loss - and this helps in healing. In contrast, infertility is a very private form of grief - you grieve alone without social support because the loss is hidden.
    Hopelessness is related to depression and usually results from the up and down cycle of emotions produced by infertility and its treatment. Most likely, you'll feel hopeful during mid-cycle when you've been treated and are looking forward to success. But if the cycle is unsuccessful, hopelessness can occur, and you may feel that you'll never become pregnant. Starting over again each month can make dealing with infertility especially tough. After the disappointment of several unsuccessful cycles, you may find it difficult to maintain a positive attitude. You may think that it gets easier with time - but it never does - and every time it fails, old wounds (which you hoped had healed) open again. After all, every time you start a treatment (especially when it is a new type of therapy you have never tried before; or treatment with a new doctor), you always do it with the hope that "this" time it's going to work for you. If you didn't have this hope, no matter how small, no one would ever start treatment at all ! Many patients deliberately try to suppress their hopes, because the pain of failing when you are hopeful is much harder to bear , and they try to resign themselves to failure. Others worry constantly about the future as well, because they know as they get older, their fertility declines.
    Loss of control
    You and your partner have probably planned your lives so that you'll begin a family at the most favourable time. Many of us think everything is possible if we work hard enough - and not being able to have a baby is often the first time you experience failure against forces at work which are beyond your control, no matter how hard you try. You may have practised birth control for years and waited until your careers were established before trying to have a baby. Discovering that you are infertile removes these feelings of control over your own life. During treatment, you may find yourself putting other parts of your lives on hold. This might include postponing moving to a new home, continuing your education, changing jobs, or establishing new relationships. The more you give up, the less in control you're likely to feel. Each treatment cycle can become a roller coaster of emotions with its ups and downs - the hopes of success and the frustration of failure.
    Anger arises from having to confront a great deal of stress and many losses, including the loss of control. It is not unusual to resent pregnant women, and friends and family who do not seem to understand the emotional tension associated with infertility. Often the anger is directed towards doctors - and this is one of the reasons why so many infertile patients change doctors so frequently. Many infertile couples are angry with God as well, because they feel God is giving them a very raw deal, for no fault of theirs.

    Feeling alone is a common experience among infertile couples and makes coping even more difficult. Most people cannot comprehend the complex feelings associated with infertility. Insensitive remarks, such as "relax and you'll get pregnant," or "after you adopt you'll have a child of your own," are not based on fact and can cause a great deal of pain. It is not unusual for relationships to change if friends and family are unable to understand and empathise with your feelings. Let your friends know that what you need is not their advice, but their support.
    Infertility is an experience that continually fluctuates in intensity and direction, so that at different times you may have different needs and experience different emotions. There are no set "stages" in this experience, and, while, at one time, your emotions can be mystifying and frighteningly intense, at another time, you may simply feel numb. There may be moments when the fact of being infertile dictates every facet of your life. The way you learn to deal with the experience of infertility will also be different at different times. One day a particular strategy may help you a lot, but later on you may find it useless. At times you may find that the pain you experience is very destructive, but at others you may find it a useful motivating force in your life. It is important to acknowledge that emotional responses to infertility vary greatly, as do different people's methods of coping with them. Each person has to find his or her own way of coping with the infertility situation, and sometimes you might need help to accomplish this.

    Does this sound like anyone you know?
    Getting pregnant can start to become an obsession. As you fail to conceive, cycle after cycle after cycle, your anxieties may begin to haunt you, as negative thoughts loop endlessly through your mind. You blame yourself, your body, for failing, even though it may well be your husband's body that is the source of the problem. The content of those negative thoughts differs from woman to woman, but they're all related, a laundry list of should-haves and shouldn't-haves. We should have started trying earlier. I shouldn't have drunk so much in college. My husband shouldn't have experimented with pot. I shouldn't have had an abortion in my twenties. I should have taken better care of myself. Eventually your relationship with your husband starts to suffer. The thrill of frequent sex has worn off, and when your husband comes home from work exhausted on day twelve of your cycle, you tell him that you don't care how tired he is, he's doing it tonight if it kills him. You're panicked about not being able to conceive, but he's laid back. Don't worry, he tells you. It will happen. Just relax and stop obsessing about it. But you can't.
    Then your best friend gets pregnant. She calls, all excited, prattling on and on about the names she's picked out and the darling crib she wants to buy and how excited her parents were to find out they're going to be grandparents. You pretend to be happy for her, but deep down inside you're insanely jealous, and you can't get off the phone fast enough. You're racked with guilt. You find yourself avoiding her and everyone else who has children. You just can't bear facing them. You are stressed out. You may feel depressed, anxious, or angry. You might have trouble concentrating at work, and you may even cry every day. You begin to wonder if you'll ever have a baby, and if you'll ever be happy again. Your whole world is falling apart-just as it did for my patients Brenda and Janine.

    How to Help Support Your Infertile Friends and Family
    Things you shouldn't say
    Things you should say
    Things You'll Need:
    • A sensitive heart and desire to help
    1. Step 1
    Remember that these people are HURTING. You want to help - but remember what the road to hell is paved with....the best of intentions. It doesn't matter that you meant to help the person when you opened your mouth and said something that really, really hurt them. Words, once spoken, can't be taken back and can leave scars that compound the pain. Tread carefully here.
    2. Step 2
    Here\'s what NOT to say:

    Some things never to say to an infertile

    "It\'s God's Will" or "God will give you a baby if He wants you to have one." - Think about this. You are saying that God doesn't think they're fit parents, so He chose to sterilize them. They already wonder why people who murdered their own babies were allowed to have them, while they were denied this gift. Bad choice of words. Don't.

    "Wow! Why are you wasting this much money?"

    "Why don't you adopt?" - Infertile couples have already heard of adoption, and know what it is. Furthermore, the decision to adopt is very personal, and it's not not for everyone. This may become an option for them in the future, and believe me, they're probably considering it. Please also do not suggest that someone is "selfish" because they DON'T want to adopt.

    They don't want to hear stories about your friends who adopted and how great their experience was.

    They especially don't want to hear your story about your friend who adopted and - SURPRISE! Had a baby a few years later.

    Don't suggest that they just needs to "relax" and they'll get pregnant. If only it were that easy. Infertility cannot be cured with a bottle of wine and a romantic dinner.

    Remarks about how they should not have "used up fertile years" by waiting until they finished college/bought a house/took that trip to Europe are cruel.

    Opinions about having a baby through infertility therapy/IVF/etc being "unnatural" should be kept to yourself.

    "Aren\'t you a little too old to have a baby?" or "Wow! Do you KNOW how OLD you'll be when your baby GRADUATES FROM HIGH SCHOOL?????" aren't helpful, or polite, either.

    Don't remark "you're next!" at baby showers/christenings/etc. Infertile women find these events painful enough to attend.

    "Oh, you can always try again." - after a failed IVF or miscarriage.

    "So, are you pregnant yet?"

    "This is nature's way of telling you that you weren't meant to be a mother." - This is just plain mean.

    "Well, these things happen for a reason. God must want you to adopt an orphan or volunteer to work with children."

    "It just isn't meant to be." - This is what you say to someone who just broke up with a boyfriend, not someone who is desperately trying to conceive a child, or worse - someone who just miscarried. Their baby died inside them. Would you say this if their child were three years old, and hit by a car?
    3. Step 3
    So...what should you say? How about....
    "I'm so sorry you are going through this. If you need to talk, I'm here for you.

    Want to share any thoughts?
    Wishing everyone comfort in dealing w/this nightmare.

  2. Just wanted to share once again, that I sent this out to at least 10 people, and only 2 responded, guess it goes to show that even when you try to explain the hell you are living with to people in your life who don't understand at all, they have more important things on their minds.

    Guess the old expression is true:
    You find out who your friends are when you go through the toughest times in life, and boy is this an eye opener.

  3. Baby - I'm sorry you're feeling so down. Give yourself time and you'll know how to proceed. Have you tried talking to a therapist or joined a RESOLVE group? i've found that talking to others who have been through BFNs/losses has helped tremendously. i'm getting my official BFN tomorrow for this cycle, and after talking to my mom today, she pulled the old "well i guess it wasn't meant to be" line. argh. she of all people should know better. i dont' think anyone can possibly understand how devastating it can be unless they've been through it themselves.
    please take time to heal.

  4. Baby...thank you so much for that read...I just had a chemical pregnancy about 3 weeks ago and I am struggling to cope as well...why can't people be more understanding? I just don't get it...

    helenN...I\'m so sorry about your bfn...will we ever get a break?? You're in my thoughts...take care

  5. Hello babycometrue,

    I am so sorry your IVF #6 failed. My heart goes out for you. Time heals everything. Give yourself time to heal. Have you thought about take a vocation? I talked to an infertility counselor after IUI #3 failed. It did help.
    I found out I have no embryo to transfer as the result of my first IVF. It was worse than a BFN. $20,000 are gone for nothing. Trust me, failed at #1 didn't feel anything better than failed #2, #3.. I have done 4 IUIs. I am mad at my RE and whoever have recommended him.... I also hate IVF... There are children everywhere I go. "You don't have one, you may never have one" stick in my head when I see a child. It is so painful.

    Hope you will find happiness soon.


  6. I understand your frustration. I just officially got my BFN (my 2nd now) this weekend. I was expecting it. The embryologist only gave us a 10% chance of success based on our frozen embryos never re-expanding before transfer. I just feel numb. Don't even want to think about what we do next. My parents response, "you can try again." They have no idea what a toll the process takes on you, physically and emotionally (not to mention financially - our insurance doesn't cover anything.) I also find the uncertainty the worst. I keep replanning my life - one way if I'm pregnant, another if I'm not. Ughh.

    Some of us on this site will become parents, some won't. I hope we all find peace.

  7. lagaluga1987-

    Thanks for this excellent letter idea. Some very good stuff. I've seen several of these types of letters on different boards, but this is the best I've seen... the least whiney, the least lashing out, and the most enlightening. The only thing is all the letters to send to friends/family that I've come across have been LONG. I've noticed that society's attention span is dwindling in this information age. I'm wondering if there's some way we could say the same thing in a shorter version... I'm not talking about twitter length, but maybe 2-3 paragraphs max???

  8. if you repructive system is not working at 100% and you are over 40 years, the adds for you to have a baby is very low,is time to tray a difrent ways,,the best is for you to have ivf and pay for surrogacy,,,,if you body can not produce egg pay for egg donation,,sorry is no easy answer,,,most of the people reding this post have the same tipe of problems,,,is better to pay less for each ivf or surrogacy that way you do not go broken,,,

  9. BCTM~I did the same thing a few years ago. I sent a long letter where I tried to shed a little light as to what I was going through, how I was feeling and how they could help me to my close family and friends. I didn't get ANY response and have learned that they just can't understand and I just have to accept that I will not get the support I need from them. It's just yet another aspect to the isolation of IF. It's so frustrating. Luckily, this board exists. Hang in there.

    Oh, and I disagree that therapy is all that helpful.

  10. This is the first time i have ever used a forum to talk about my feelings on my failed IVF and IUI.
    The last lot of IVF was a few months ago and I still have really down days and I have no date to have another try due to the cost of it here in the UK.
    Can I just say that you letter is perfect and I would love to be able to compile something like that for my friends and family. I know though that they say all these insensitive things because they just dont know what else to say as they have never been in my situation. it seemed as though just after the last lot of IVF 3 members of my family fell and I still have not been to see any of the babies as its just too painful and im always asked "why have you not been to see Vicky yet???"
    My partner is lovely but he works hard and I don't want to see too whingy. I have noone else to talk to.
    I feel so on my own

RSS feed for this topic


You must log in to post.