Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Self-Flagellation, Chapter Oh-I've-Lost-Count.

Watch your mother-in-law and spouse interact with other people's babies. Think about how they deserve to have lots of children to love. Think about how you have failed to give this to them. Wallow in self-pity and regret. Drink. Weep.


Susanne said...

There are children everywhere, needing love. Great parents and grandparents find these children and love them; they can't help it. It has nothing to do with how many biological offspring they have or don't have. Stop torturing yourself. This is not about giving, it's about living.

Cynthia W Gentry said...

Oh, I know. The funny thing about blogging is that it usually reflects a moment in time that then passes. And you feel better, but the blog post is still there. And that doesn't invalidate what you felt, in that moment.

Anonymous said...

i've never posted a comment on another's blog before but felt compelled after reading this latest entry... as far as i could gather, you have one biological child and have been trying for number two. as someone who has been undergoing fertility treatments and has thus far been unable to conceive at all, i think it important not to lose sight of what you already have.

Cynthia W Gentry said...

Hi Anonymous,
Welcome to the wonderful world of blog commenting! I'm glad you joined in. You raise a valid point. Yes, I do have a son, who was conceived after 9 cycles of infertility treatments (which included 2 miscarriages, one at 8 weeks). My husband and I recognize what a miracle he is, and not a day goes by that we don't give thanks for him. And I so I do understand where you're coming from, and the pain you're feeling.

Secondary infertility is a tricky thing. You occupy a sort of no-woman's land between people struggling with primary infertility, and people who have no trouble conceiving their 2nd, 3rd or 4th child. Then you have the well-meaning friends/relatives who are constantly asking, "When are you going to have another one?" One article on Babycenter.com points out: "Studies show that women who have trouble conceiving a second child grow just as anxious and depressed as women struggling to get pregnant for the first time."

So I think it's important to show compassion and understanding to everyone going through infertility, no matter when it occurs. It truly is one of the toughest things you can deal with as a woman, as a man, or as a couple.

Thanks again for writing.

Cynthia W Gentry said...

I also want to address something that susanne said in her comment. I assume that the comment "There are children everywhere, needing love" is another way of saying, "You could just adopt." (Apologies if I'm misinterpreting.) In fact, adoption both internationally and domestically is very, very difficult. I know people who have tried for many years to adopt, without success. Again, apologies if this isn't what you meant (I guess I'm not sure what you did mean), but I just wanted to point this out.

Of course, obviously there are many children in foster care and other disadvantaged situations who need our support, whether through volunteering or donations. Still, that doesn't eliminated the grief one feels due to infertility.

Anonymous said...

I didn’t mean to imply that I wasn’t sympathetic or don’t understand how it is you’re feeling. It’s just that, from where I’m sitting, I’d give my eye teeth to have what you have, that’s all… Incidentally, for what it’s worth, I came across your blog a couple of weeks ago and (my reaction to this particular post notwithstanding) have actually found it to be a great source of comfort precisely because you’ve managed to express exactly what it is that I’m feeling, so thank you.

Cynthia W Gentry said...

Hi Anonymous,
Thanks for writing back (and offering me perspective, which I often sorely need). I know how you're feeling--believe me--and I wish you the best of luck. And I'm glad to talk with you off-blog if you'd like to share stories or whatever.

I'm glad the blog has been helpful to you. That's why I write it. I know that one of the things that has saved my sanity is know that there are other people out there who have experienced the same thing and "get it," although I wouldn't wish this experience on anyone.

If there's a silver lining, it's in the wonderful people I've met in person and online. Thanks again for writing, and let me know if there are other topics you'd like me to cover!

metoo said...

hey there....i have secondary infertility too. And I have three kids. Yes, I want a fourth. Yes, I am terribly greedy. And yes, it hurts so much to not be able to do this. I have three miracles that I love and cherish everyday. I think with secondary infertility - you NEVER lose sight of what you have and that in many many ways, can make this journey even more painful. You KNOW 100% what you are missing out on by not being able to have another child. Just my two cents worth. Hang in there and I hope that this cycle, is your cycle.