“I just can’t do this anymore.”
I told my husband at the end of another stress induced fight. We had been going through fertility treatments for about 8 months and it was taking a toll on us. We were getting the same result over and over.
Not pregnant. Again.
We had struggled with secondary infertility for 20 months at that point, and had sought out medical intervention in hopes of becoming pregnant again. My husband and I kept the line of communication open between us every step of the way. We carefully selected treatments that we were comfortable with and hoped for the best each month.
Unfortunately, after trying these treatments we were stressed, exhausted, and frustrated. No closer to our goal of expanding our family. I began resenting my husband because I was the having to do a majority of “the work.” Charting, attending appointments, and submitting to test after test while it appeared that all this wasn’t weighing on him.
The time we needed to be united the most, we were falling apart. We needed to take a long, hard look at what we were doing.
What did we truly want?
Were our actions leading us to that place?
Did we even want another child or were we just trying to prove we could get pregnant again?
My “Type-A” personality lead me to the internet to research tips to aid in our decision. I so badly wanted to hear from someone that it didn’t work out for. To my surprise, I didn’t find much. I understand every couple’s decision is incredibly personal. No two situations are the same, however I want to share some tips that helped us cope with this decision and move on afterwards.
Celebrate What You’ve Been Through
Obviously we did not come out of this situation with our desired result, a baby. We did, however, gain a stronger marriage, a new appreciation for our daughter, and support we never knew we had. All of those things deserve to be celebrated! We decided to celebrate these things by going on a quick family getaway to help us get back to “the old us.”
Inform Your Support System
Depending on how public you have been with your fertility treatments, your support system should be in the loop. It was difficult to share with some people so my husband took the lead and informed some of our decision.
One Day at a Time
Even though we have made this decision, the emotions behind wanting another child are not gone. Some days are better than others, but I take comfort in knowing we made a decision that allows us to be the best parents and spouses we can be.
You Can Change Your Mind
I can’t predict the future, so I don’t know if we will want to try fertility treatments again. My husband and I agreed that we will check in with each other periodically to see if we are still comfortable with our decision.
Seek Out Additional Support
For me, I needed someone who could relate to our situation. Even though I had friends who had gone through similar processes, they eventually had another child. I wanted to talk with someone who had made a decision similar to mine. I was able to find others in similar situations in online support groups through Resolve: The National Infertility Center.
Have you wrestled with the decision to end fertility treatments?
What things helped you cope with your decision?
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