I’d like to pose a question to all of you that has been weighing hard on my heart:
How long does someone have to try to have a baby before they can be part of our club? How far do they have to go to be considered one of us?
I think it’s an inevitable part of human nature to look for ways that you’re “better” than others, but I also think it’s the worst part of human nature. In my opinion it’s the root of prejudice, racism, sexism and many of the atrocities that have plagued human societies since the very beginning of time.
My biggest fear in parenting is that I won’t be able to teach my children not to judge others, that they aren’t better than anyone else, they’re just themselves and that is what makes them wonderful (even if I think they poop rainbows.)
I’m really scared that this is starting to happen in the infertile community… I promise this will be the last time I mention it, but the in the comment section of the blog post I wrote about yesterday regarding P.A.I.L. there were several comments made about the woman who started the blogroll and how she didn’t even deserve to be a part of our community because she hadn’t struggled hard or long enough before she got pregnant.
At what point is our pain enough to be a part of this club? Should we wear our number of years or months struggling as a badge of honor instead of grieving them? Does moving on to a higher level of ART mean you’re “more infertile” than the girl next door? Does having more than one miscarriage make you more deserving of sympathy?
I think we’re all guilty of occasionally thinking we’ve had things harder than others, at least I know I am. When I’m depressed and wallowing in self pity it is hard to remember that I’m not the only one hurting but a sad and amazing thing happened the other day that made me realize that none of the things I mentioned above matter, every single person needs and deserves support.
A friend of mine in real life told me that she had just started her period after her third month trying to get pregnant. She was tipsy (as most of us are the day the BFN shows). She apologized multiple times for complaining to me, because she knew how hard of a time we’d had. She was sweet and honest and was so frustrated about things not being easy like they are for everyone else. She told me how they had planned and waited for the “perfect” time to start trying, how she’d given up caffeine months before and done everything she could to be ready.
…She was telling me my own story…
Listening to her brought me back to the first few months we tried, I think I cried more those 6 months than I did in the next 2 years. I had forgotten how hard those months were. They were the months where I wasn’t yet infertile, I just wasn’t normal. They were the months where I had to come to grips with the fact that even the best laid plans don’t always work out. They were the months where I didn’t belong to either group, fertile or infertile. I couldn’t even talk to my doctor about a potential problem because I hadn’t tried long enough. Those were the months where I felt the most brushed off and un-heard. They were the months I felt the most alone. They were awful months.
I want everyone to feel welcome in this community. I want everyone in my real life to know how our son was conceived so that they feel like they can talk to me if they’re struggling. I want to always remember that my hurt is no more important than anyone else’s.
So I ask that you try to be understanding of everyone you meet because every person has hurt that they’re carrying and it really isn’t our place to judge who is hurting more.