I’ve been reading “When the Cradle is Empty: Answering Tough Questions About Infertility” by John and Sylvia Van Regenmorter. This week we will look at Chapter 2: Pitfalls along the Path.
The authors discuss their early beliefs that they would get married have children and live happily ever after. When they weren’t getting pregnant they said they waited almost two years before seeking medical help. Often couples wait just hoping it will work. Unfortunately there is often a medical condition that can only be fixed by a doctor/medicine so all the “trying” in the world won’t help until the issue has been addressed. But they say it is normal to ignore the problem and/or not want to be labeled “infertile” (I always hated that term, it seems so final, so I always said we were “trying to build our family”).
Once you decide you are ready for help who do you go to? Sylvia said their first appointment was at an OB/Gyn that specialized in infertility however he also specialized in prenatal care so the waiting room was full of pregnant women. She said:
“One day [I] overheard the conversation of two other women, one was 37; the other looked 18 at most. The younger one asked the older one if she was happy with her pregnancy. ‘Oh, yes,’ the older one replied. ‘But I’ll be glad when it’s over; I just hope we have a boy. I’ve had five girls, and my husband wants a boy. He’ll kill me if it’s a girl.’ The younger one declared the she hoped she wasn’t pregnant. ‘I’m too young to have a baby,’ she said matter-of-factly. ‘Of course, if I am pregnant, I’ll get an abortion. There’s no way I’m taking care of a kid!”
I can just feel the sadness of overhearing that in a waiting room. It breaks my heart. That would be a time I would really be questioning God, “Why did you allow me to be in the same room as “Mrs. Rabbit” and “Clueless Teen”?”
So one of the things to consider when choosing a doctor is the setting. There are good ob/gyn’s that specialize in infertility but if possible you should really get a referral for a board-certified Reproductive Endocrinologist (referred to as an RE).
Here are a few organizations tha have good resources:
The authors finished out the chapter by explaining what to expect in an initial consultation and to be aware that:
1. It is not always the women’s medical issue, 40-45% of the time it is a male issue too
2. Both husband and wife should be evaluated
3. If there is something that doesn’t feel right about your doctor ask for a second opinion or seek a different doctor, you would hate to lose 6-12 months on protocols that were not effective
This Miracle Monday remember that God works miracles and maybe the advances in reproductive technology are just the miracle you need. If you are on your third failed IVF I know that sounds trite. There just needs to be a balance between relying solely on prayer, “Please let me get pregnant” (even though you continue to do the exact same thing every month) and “Please help me get pregnant, what help is available out there for us?”