Coming Out of the Infertility Closet
I know infertility is supposed to be a taboo topic but I can’t do it anymore. I feel like I was spending so much time and energy covering it up. So I came out of the closet. My husband said I should call this post “Cumming Out of the Infertility Closet”. I thought that was very creative and funny but I also don’t want to scare people away!
Who all have we told?
Our close friends
Our bosses and some coworkers
Random people that ask us about kids
All of my readers 🙂
It has been a crazy ride! For the past year, there have been so many times I wanted to respond to the incessant questions wondering when we will have children with “I’m infertile” or “after you give me 20 grand to pay for my IVF”. Yes, you hear a bit of bitterness in me. Instead, I made vague comments that didn’t really tell them anything. After those comments, I would panic that I gave away too much info or maybe not enough. It was stressful for me to feel like I had to cover it up.
As my husband and I get farther along on this journey, we have opened up to more and more people. My husband has a much easier time telling others than me. I really struggle with how to say it. My husband just blurts it out. He is the one who used the words “shooting blanks” when telling his boss why he had to quit his job. Seriously. I’m not kidding. I was in tears when he was telling me the story because I was laughing so hard.
I don’t know how he does it. When I told the first few people, I know my face was completely red. I would start sweating and couldn’t catch my breath I was so nervous about it. I have absolutely no idea why it’s so hard for me, but it is. I’m not ashamed of our infertility, but it is something that is deeply personal to me. Shortly after we realized something may be wrong, someone asked me about our plans for kids. I panicked and told them I hated kids and wouldn’t ever have any. I don’t know why that is what came out of my mouth. I clearly didn’t think it through! It does make me laugh though when I think about their response when I announce my IVF baby!
While my husband has had no trouble telling pretty much everyone he encounters, I really struggled telling my mom. I think it’s partly due to the fact that it’s a hard conversation to have and partly due to the fact that I know she was going to be really sad about it. I already feel sad enough about this situation, I felt like someone else also feeling sad would just make it harder. Knowing other people were sad due to my lack of being able to have a child put so much more weight on me. My husband and I have been really good in this journey not to throw blame. However, I was throwing blame onto myself all along.
Once I finally blurted it out, I felt so much better. I feel so relieved that it is now out in the open. However, we have been surprised at how rarely people want to talk about it. When we tell them, it usually cuts the conversation off. We are so used to it now, that we expect it. It’s a personal topic that relates to sex. That’s right, I said it. SEX. I feel that is why people are so hesitant to talk about it.
However, the longer we have dealt with this, the more I have realized that may not be the real reason. What I’m learning is that it may be more due to the fact that they care so much that they are afraid to say the wrong thing. While I fully understand this feeling as I have been there when people open up and I’m unsure what to say, please know that this isn’t the best approach!
If someone has opened up to you about their infertility journey, it means they are willing to talk to you about it! It doesn’t mean they never want to mention it again also don’t be afraid to ask how they are doing!
One of the easiest people for me to tell were my two best friends. They have been so incredibly supportive. One of them, specifically, has really shown her ability to be there for someone like I never expected. While major holidays like Mother’s Day come and goe and I sit at home in tears, it’s my one friend that decided to reach out to me and ask how I was doing. To this day, I don’t think she realizes how much that meant to me.
Because it’s so hard to open up, many people come online. That’s why I have joined this incredible online community. Many of the women I have met through Instagram and blogging understand and know what to say unlike many other people! I can’t thank these women enough for sharing their stories and being as supportive as they have been! That community is one of the wonderful things that has come from this journey!