I know the week is almost over but I wanted to share for those of you that don’t know that April 21-27, 2013 is National Infertility Awareness Week. Did you know that infertility affects 7.3 million people in the U.S? That means that 12% of women of childbearing age, or 1 in 8 couples are dealing with infertility. I bet you know someone who is dealing with infertility!
Infertility is defined as the inability to conceive after one year of unprotected intercourse (six months if the woman is over age 35) or the inability to carry a pregnancy to live birth. I have family and friends who are dealing with infertility. The Man and I also experienced it, as we tried for two years to get pregnant before seeking help (yes, longer than we should have!) I was convinced that the next cycle would be “the one.” Thankfully, we got pregnant one cycle after seeking help and we have a happy ending to our infertility story. There are many who do not.
It can be hard to know what to say to someone who is dealing with infertility. Telling them to relax doesn’t help…trust me, I know this from experience. Infertility is a medical diagnosis and relaxing does not fix it. Would you tell someone with cancer to relax? I think not. It’s the same with infertility. I strongly encourage you to check out this page for things to do or say to someone who is struggling with this diagnosis. I had so many people tell me to relax or tell me how easy it was for them to get pregnant. Neither helped. I was that women who blocked/unfollowed people when they announced a pregnancy. I just couldn’t handle it. It was hard, so hard. I didn’t talk much about how hard it was. It feels like you are broken, especially when everyone around you is getting pregnant.
Knowing how long it took us to conceive Munchkin makes me a little nervous to expanding our family. We both want more children. I do wonder how long it will take to get a little brother or sister for Munchkin. I try not to dwell on it as I know it won’t help. But the thought is there, lingering in the back of my mind.
Even if we don’t have anymore children, I am so thankful for my baby. I am so blessed by her. I’m thankful that I was able to carry and give birth to her. I treasure that experience. I don’t take it for granted.
I have friends who are still trying to have a baby. If you’d like to follow their stories, I know they’d love to have you follow along. Wife of a Sailor and Lauren are trying to conceive their first child. I recently found Courtney’s blog through the Ultimate Blog Party 13 and she is dealing with secondary infertility and is going to be doing IVF to conceive her second child. Brittany is doing an IUI to try to conceive her second child. Then there are those who decided to adopt to become a mom, like ArmyMomma. This ladies are all amazing, incredible moms.
If you or someone you know is struggling with infertility, they don’t have to do it alone. Please check out the resolve website for information and support. You can find a infertilty 101 and more information on NIAW. You can also reach out to me or to any of the ladies I mentioned above. You are NOT alone!