Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Note on previous post ...

I had to delete a comment because it went over the top with the "this is not a contest" concept.

I don't know how much more I can explain. I do not think the pain of IF is a contest. Nor am I saying one person deserves support more than another. Nor am I saying treatments are more support worthy than ttc naturally.

I thought I was ~very clear~ this post wasn't about that. Are people just skimming it and jumping to conclusions or what? (Just an fyi - I am responding to come people's comments in the comment section. I try to email you from your profile, but many of you don't have your email displayed so I can't respond.)

Here is something else to ponder ... In my experience of the subject over the years from writing about it or reading other blogs about it, the people who get seem to get offended the most and respond with the "there should be no difference between the ins/outs of ttc support" are (usually) the people who didn't go through infertility - either conceiving easily in regards to time and/or with the beginning of treatments. While I am 100% behind the fact everyone deserves support while ttc, I also believe there are differences based on each woman's personal story. It just goes to show it sometimes takes going through something to understand more of it. Which, I guess, is a very obvious conclusion.

So my question is, as an infertile, does the support of another infertile and the support of someone who doesn't know the personal pain of infertility come across as any *different?

* let me note I appreciate ~all~ support and I assume we all do. I'm not asking about the sincerity of the support or about the aspect of the actual words said in support. I am not saying one is better than the other. No way. Just wondering if you perceive any difference in either of such a good thing to even receive at all - support.


Anonymous said...

I think that EVERYONE deserves support no matter what point in there journey they are at. But like you I do think there is a difference between someone who has been trying for 13 months and tries clomid and it works the first or second time, than someone who had been trying for 2 years and finally gets pregnant after 2 IVF's.

After my 2 1/2 years of trying to get pregnant, and gearing up for a donor egg cycle as we speak, I do feel like I am another category, the chance of spontaneous pregnancy happening for me is almost none, i've had to give up on a genetic link to any child I have, and unless someone has been there I don't think they'd understand that, that to me is a different kind of pain as well.

I guess we can never know how we would react in someone elses shoes, but I know that in the back of my mind I do think that when someone says it took them a whole year and clomid to get pregnant, that I WISH I had had it that easy. But it's all relative, ya know?

This isn't a contest and I wouldn't wish the pain of what most of us have gone through on anyone.

Shinejil said...

I think we can say "we'll support you, all of you" without pretending that the gal on her 9th IVF is the same as the gal still grappling with the idea she may need an RE.

Of course, some folks rub you the wrong way, but in general, there's a core of empathy that anyone who has seriously looked IF in the face and seen what it could mean for their parenting dreams retains, methinks.

I went from a kind of skepticism or even suspicion about IVF and donor egg to acceptance, understanding, and a profound sympathy with anyone facing those choices. I know that, though I suffered, I STILL got off relatively easy with my ectopic fiasco and followed immediately by a (seemingly successful) BFP.

But yeah, support from non-IF gals who have no idea what I did to get knocked up always feels a bit... odd. Much of it, since my pregnancy began, has been kind and sincere, but there's always a point I get to internally where I think to myself, "they have no idea how I value this."

Steph O. said...

I agree that there are differences in the journey. We all have the right to choose what treatments we will & won't do. I'll admit that my journey thus far has been difficult. I'll conceed that going through failed meds, IUIs, or IVFs would be harder. And, I remember how hard it was when I was "only" 8 months into it. Believing that it just "happens", then having to face the cold, stark reality of IF is tough. And it totally sucks.

Anyway, to answer the new question. I like support no matter who it comes from. I feel that if they haven't personally been through it, comments should be kept to an "I'm sorry you have to go through that" though.

emilythehopeless said...

during my treatments getting support from people who had been there already had much more of an impact than from people who had little or no clue about what i was going through. people who haven't gone through IVF don't fully understand what it's like.. there's really no way they could. support from people in my life who didn't understand sometimes actually made me feel worse. it's hard to have real empathy when you have never been through years of treatments. i can break it down even further and say that people who have biological kids can't fully empathize with someone like me who will never have one. .. oh geez i sound snarky.. i don't mean to. of course none of this is a contest (i didn't get that from what you said at all) but it IS different at different levels. just me personally going through the different levels i felt that about myself.. and in the way i offered sympathy and support. as i went through more and more crap i learned more about the pain and then could really feel the pain other women were/are going through. before i went through several IVFs i thought of it as a single event, i did not understand what the daily, hourly life of an IVF cycle was really like. okay, now i'm just babbling..

yes. it is different. and i am different because of all of it.

Jen said...

I don't know that I'm qualified to answer that question from the perspective of an infertile, because I think most people dealing with IF have had a more difficult time than me. So of course I never felt bad when somebody reached out to support me, even if they had been successful in their treatments because I personally believe they went through much more difficulty than me.

That said I do sometimes feel inadequate when offering people support. I have not sought out new IF blogs to read, because (1) that is not where I am right now and (2) I would feel guilty offering support. At the same time, I still read the blogs of ladies who I read before becoming pregnant as I would feel horrible abandoning their blogs when they still need the support. And I want to give the support.

And while this may not be a contest and everybody deserves support, there are different degrees of pain that relates back to the different courses we are all on. Had I not been successful with IUI/letrozole, I would have most certainly felt more disappointment after a failed IVF.

Sorry for the ramble.

Tigger said...

It does, for me. You know my story, and what I've ended up deciding to do. When I was on the boards, the support of those who'd been in the trenches where I was seemed more...sincere...than that of those who hadn't. That's not to say that the "newbies" weren't sincere, it was just different. While I appreciated all support, you really CAN'T empathize with someone whose road you haven't even glimpsed. It's like the girl at the hair salon saying "oh, I'm in the same boat" after hearing my story...and then upon discussing it further, I found out she'd been trying for all of 3 weeks. Same boat? Not even the same PLANET.

Then again, I also always wondered if the one's who'd been trying forever and who'd done so much more than I were only patronizing me with their support, while thinking "she hasn't been through ANYTHING! Come complain to me when you've been through X, X, X, and X and we can talk." And I've had to be careful when giving support that I don't come across that way. It really ISN'T a contest, but we can't help how we feel sometimes.

Peeveme said...

Wow, great posts and comments. SO many thought..so few fingers (to type with). Just wanted to say thanks to you and your commenters for a thought provoking read.

Jenera said...

Way to shake things up :o).

As you know I've not had any IF experience so I'm not sure I can weigh in on that front. Having had a miscarriage though I will say my support of other preggos differs a bit than it did before that.

I know someone pregnant right now and she smoked weed right up until about a month or so ago and she is due in July. She also smoked cigarettes up until that time. yeah she quit but only 'cuz it made her sick, not because she was doing it for the baby. I have a hard time supporting her in any fashion because of the risks she is taking in her pregnancy when I did everything right and lost one.

When I see women who are careless and reckless with their health and habits, I have very little sympathy and I feel angry and bitter.

But after reading your story throughout your pregnancy, I've learned a whole new side to things. Not only do I know how it feels to be a woman who loses a pregnancy but I know some of your experiences and have a greater understanding of the IF world.

I can see where you and other IF'ers may have 'levels' of sympathy for other women but I can also see that there is still the general feelings of support regardless.

Jendeis said...

For me, I appreciate support from whoever wants to give it to me. But I do have times where I cannot give good support to others; where my response to some people's blog posts is a blunt "F-CK YOU." It's not that the blogger isn't deserving of support; just that I can't be the one to give it.

Anonymous said...

yes, there is a difference. the support i get from other people who are infertile is way more comforting than the support i get from someone who has no idea what i'm going through, because no matter how hard they try, they cannot even IMAGINE how much it sucks, straight up. i appreciate that people feel bad for me i guess, but i'm not looking for sympathy, i'm looking for something more than that, UNDERSTANDING, a CONNECTION, that knowing look in someone's eye that says "i have been there." people who haven't been there say things like, "it will happen when the time's right." really? when the time's right for who, because it's right for us now. people that have been through it don't say dumb shit like that, which is another reason why it's more comforting.

areyoukiddingme said...

I know about loss, but I don't know about IUI or IVF and all of their intricacies. I know enough to realize that I don't want to have to go through that kind of experience. I admire the strength of the people who do. I think I see where you were going with your previous post...as you get farther along in the series of procedures you have to undergo, you need a different kind of support. If you're trying for a few months, the "it will happen when the time is right" comments are welcome and appropriate. As you advance to the point where you know there's something wrong, you need the support of people who will tell you to take charge of your reproductive health. Once you get a diagnosis (or in some cases, a non-diagnosis), you need the support of people who are familiar with protocols and can give you their experiences. Once you get in the trenches, you want to share your experiences with people who understand - and you may or may not want to hear the success stories to give you hope. I think it's less about pain, and more about the differences of what people need from each other at different stages of their journey towards children.

Some thought provoking posts and comments here...

Anonymous said...

I have followed your blog for some time now (I graduated from PAIF before you did, having TTC for 8 years, being blessed with DD after IVF #2, and our miracle surprise DS last year). My honest opinion is that there are some people I feel need more support than others. Plain and simple, I have a hard time feeling sorry for some, worried about the sex of the baby, sad that they didn't concieve in time to have a spring baby, etc. That just pisses me off. After having gone through what we have, the people I feel for are the ones who know the deep, cutting heartache of facing the fact that they may never have the child(ren) that they long for so badly that their toes ache.

It doesn't matter to me what method they are trying to concieve with, if they are not successfull, and it doesn't look like they will be, that sucks the most. I hadn't gone through anything but IVF and FET, so I can't comment on clomid or anything else, but if the hopes and dreams are as intense as mine were when going through our treatments, the loss must feel the same, too.

Great post, Nancy, I love following your blog, hope you're feeling better.

Julie said...

The support given probably shouldn't feel any different, but it does. As someone said before it usually comes from what people say when they are trying to be supportive. People who haven't been through IF have a tendency to say stupid things. On the other hand people who have been through all the pain of not being able to conceive know how hurtful those comments are and how they are not really supportive at all. Words from people who have truly experienced IF (not the people that claim they know because it took 6-12 whole months) don't seem hollow.

I also think that while it shouldn't be a contest that some part of us compares what other people have experienced and judges whether they really can understand. I know that I compare myself to others (even though I probably shouldn't). Some people I feel I have experienced more pain and heartache than they have, and others I feel like they have experience a ton more than I can even imagine at this point.

AJ said...

Nancy I totally agree with what you are saying.

I think the following might not totally be on the same topic but here it goes :0)

As an IF'er, who had to have a hysterectomy without being able to conceive any kids, I still am getting comments like "are you sure there was nothing the Dr. can do?" Ummm....seriously, do you really think I would have a hysterectomy if there was any way to avoid it?

I am also getting really annoyed at the people that are "mad" about me having to have a hysterectomy. Seriously, it's not your life or your body, I'm not mad anymore, so get over it!

Anyways, infertility is a touchy issue but you always have insightful, thoughtful posts.

I hope you are healing well and don't have any more surgeries please!!!!

Heather said...

I know what you mean that it's not a contest. I know that things have been a bit easier for me seeing other pregnant people since we've had our one daughter. It was the worst when I thought we'd never even have one child.

But I know that all losses and tries are painful when they don't work out. I actually have to see a friend today who has a preschool age daughter and found out she was "accidentally" pregnant last week and had a miscarriage yesterday. I feel so bad for her. Even though I know they were ambivalent about how they felt about having another child, I know there was a part of her and her DH that were kind of excited.

Steph said...

Nancy, that was me who said "Infertility is not a contest". It wasn't directed at anything you said..you asked for thoughts on the subject, so that's just what ~I~ had to say about it.

My point being is that someone, for example, who's been TTC for 2 years, shouldn't look at someone who's only been trying for 1 year and think they aren't suffering too, because they haven't been doing it as long. That's what I meant by "it's not a contest". It wasn't anything personal, I was just sharing *my* viewpoint.

Of COURSE someone who's been TTC for years has a lot more emotions about it than someone who has just started out..that's natural..and expected, IMO. Their heart has been broken time and time again, so they're in a different place than someone who's just started.

I just meant that *everyone* who is TTC and having trouble deserves support, just like you and everyone else said.

No offense intended, and I'm sorry that you removed my post because I thought hard about it before I typed out MY viewpoint.


Steph said...

BTW, I just went back and read the other post and the "this is not a contest" comment I made is still there...?

It's under "anonymous" because yesterday when I tried to select 'name' and type my name in it wouldn't let me publish, it said there were fields missing.


Kimjj514 said...

The thing to remember is that everyone has their own personal experiences when it comes to TTC...whether they are diagnosed as IF or not. It's easy to look at someone and have a difficult time giving support when you know they haven't gone through IF, but it's also easy to miss the big picture. For instance, I have never gone through IF and I'm very appreciative for that. I truly feel for all the girls that struggle for the miracle of life. I pray daily for those that are struggling with TTC, and I, too, get angry when I hear of some teenage girl who gets KU without even trying (even though I was once one of them). However, even though I've never gone through IF, I've had MANY other challenges to get through. After my son was born my health spiraled downward and was hospitalized so many times I can't even count. I've come close to death on more than one occasion, before being diagnosed with an autoimmune disease. So on the outward there are people that are in that 1st year of TTC that get their BFP and you feel that bitterness towards. But you can't assume that they have it easy just because they've never struggled with IF.

Anyway, my point is that we tend to forget that TTC is just a small piece of the puzzle. And I understand what you're saying. But there also comes a point that you just have to be able to "let go" of the pain and bitterness that you may feel and say to yourself, "I've got 3 beautiful children and I've beat IF." Yes, you struggled to get those 3 children..but you've won the battle by all means.

Lisa said...

As a non-IFer, I cannot even begin to understand the pain of any kind of treatment. I do know people who have had fertility issues as well as a lot of people that have had to deal with loss. I know that knowing people and experiencing it for yourself is two very different things. But, I would like to think that my support is genuine even though I have not dealt with it first hand.

The sad thing is that it does seem like a contest for many people. I am not sure why that is since most of you can truly relate to what the other is going through.

The only thing that bugs me as a "fertile", is when someone from the IF community claims that they value their pregnancy or baby more than I have because of the struggles they endured to get there. Nancy, do you feel like you value or appreciate Ella and Karl more than Allison because you had a harder time conceiving them? I just have a hard time when people tell me how I felt about my pregnancy or my boys. Just because they feel that I did not struggle enough to have them. It makes it seem like I was not worthy of having my kids...

Wordgirl said...


You sure know how to get people talking woman...



Anonymous said...

It's not a contest, but some people do get the scars on their heart easier than others. I felt like an infertile all the years I thought my troubled ob history/infections would prevent me from having a baby. I cried over baby showers and pregnant women, suffered in silence with all the feelings I later saw other infertile women struggle with.

So it turns out I got pregnant in 6 months, lost the baby, and took Clomid to hurry up and get pregnant again 6 months later. It was hard. My emotions toward pregnant women were about 10x as intense as they were before the loss. Maybe that's not infertile to some people, but I promise, I understand, in ways a normal gal never does.


Kaci said...

I know that I offer support differently depending on what I know about a person. I do support my friend who is on C3 TTC#2 after she conceived #1 her first cycle off BCP. But the feelings for her & the support for her are different than my friend on year 5 TTC#1. Even though I can relate more to what friend 1 is going through, I have much stronger feelings about what friend 2 is going through. I don't know if that made sense, but I recognize there is a difference.

I always worry that I don't know how to offer support to IF'ers so sometimes I say nothing and other times I say something & pray they realize I mean to be supportive even if I've just stuck my foot in my mouth.

Anonymous said...

couple a' things..

1) I didn't mean my first comment to the original post to be harsh towards you....you just got me thinking, that's all. I think I got the gist of what you were writing. It was just something I'd been thinking about.

2) I agree with the commenter who said it's offensive to constantly hear that I don't appreciate or value my kids as much as an IF would.

I wish it DIDNT have to be such a pissing contest but, I guess it's like so many other mommy things..........someone always has to one-up someone else.

Sugar and Ice said...

I think some people just read what they want to read and totally miss what is actually being said sometimes. NO, it's not a contest, but if anyone out there actually thinks all pain is created equal, then they obviously haven't dealt with much pain. I'm not saying that the pain of someone who has been ttc for 18 months is always worse than someone who has been ttc for 12 months. Of course, the pain can't be measured in months, and there are always other factors involved...type of infertility, age of the couple, financial status, health of the woman, previous loss, etc. In the end though, even though there's no good way to compare, yes, some people's IF is worse than others. We tried for over three years before getting pregnant the first time...and if someone tries to tell me that they tried for six months and then got pregnant naturally and it hurt just as bad for those six months as it did for my 36+ cycles...well, I'd have to disagree. However, I don't think my hurt even compares to some of the crazy things I've read in other blogs of women that tried for much less time with me (women who start treatments earlier and discover they don't respond to treatment...women who have to get donor eggs/sperm...women who have to use a surrogate, etc). There are just so many factors. So, yeah, IF sucks for everyone...but it sucks for some people more...period!

Birdee said...

I'm not quite sure on the quesiton, but I'll give an answer based on how I preceived it.
I took it as "the feel I get when supported by someone who has not experienced levels of IF vs. someone who has been there".

And I agree - I loved all support, especially compassion.
But there is a warming I would feel - a closeness, comon bond - a golden thread when supported by women who had been where I have been. But almost on the flip side, when I was supported by a women who just had her first - second or more failed IVF - or even failed IUI's. I felt guilty. Like "How am I to complain" yet I KNOW these women know where I have been, and as humbled as I felt. I still felt so grateful for their support, for them looking at me and saying "We know you hurt".

Am I even answering the right question?
Anywho - Great Question, I've missed you and your mind and heart exploring questions. I hope your feeling better (getting some rest - I know your okay)

Joe said...

This opinion is of an outsider looking in that just doesn't always get it. The competitiveness, the anger the jealousy, the feeling of guilt once you are pregnant. I'm sorry but if I wanted a child and was able to conceive that child the last thing I would want to feel is guilt! Why is there so much pressure?

At the end of the day in my opinion, a child is a child, a life,a miracle, no matter how it was conceived, because the goal was reached, to have all that extra tacked on to it, yeesh! I couldn't imagine showing one person more support over another with pregnancy or ttc,I couldn't imagine being told sorry I cant really support you because I did more to have MY kid, and if I was ever told that to my face, oh boy, I'd have to walk away to make sure I didn't punch you.

Maybe its because I haven't gone through it that I feel this way but I think its immature and selfish thinking and I think the entire goal of ttc, you know the CHILD, is being buried by well, negativity, selfishness and competitiveness. Again it must be because I'm an outsider looking in who just doesn't get it because I can not wrap my head around it.

Anonymous said...

It's not a contest, but it does suck. I always got irritated with people saying things like 'you havne't been trying very long, relax.' And yeah, it did take 'only' 7 months to conceive, and I didn't have to do IVF, just a boatload of drugs and procedures. And all that was after 3 miscarriages.
And now that I have 2 healthy kids, I still get really annoyed with people who think that somehow 'erases' the losses.
IF is its own world, and I wish it didn't exist. But we're all in it in some way, or we wouldn't be commenting on it, right? so it doesn't make sense to compete for the most crappiness. It's nice to hear what works for different people, you never know, you might find your own solution that way.

nancy said...

Steph, yours is still there because it's not the one I deleted. The one I deleted was a very rude comment.

Steph said...

Oh, ok..I didn't see that one, LOL. I was afraid I had offended people but it was not my intention.



nancy said...

It's funny, when I blogged about it yesterday, I almost said specifically that I wasn't responding to what you said, but thought you'd see that it wasn't about you. And you did - just in a little round-about way!

Bay said...

So where to begin....
I know what it is like to be the person who says "noone knows what it is like until you are there" I lost a sister to leukemia and it was horrible. She was 34 and so alive until she got sick. So I know what that person feels like. But, I also know what it feels like to feel guilty. Guilty that it was easier for me than most. I always felt like I shouldn't feel guilty though. I couldn't do anything about it. I wasn't flashing it around like I was some lucky fertile who didn't have to withstand the months and/or years of hardship. I also understand the need for awareness of our words. I know not to say "well now you have a reason to keep practicing" or whatever terrible off the cuff thing people say when then just shouldn't say anything except for "I'm sorry." But, I know I don't REALLY know what the IFers out there feel like. But I understand Joe. I am that person who doesn't want to ever hold any ill will especially over things we can't control. Even though this same person has had complete and total breakdowns over the birth of a friend's baby, or a baby shower, or an impending due date anniversary. I was sad for me but could still be happy for them.
However, I know you Nancy, I know you better than anyone here and I know what you mean when you say what you say. But it is left up for interperatation and I can sometimes see how it can be taken wrong. I KNOW what you mean when you say "there are no feelings of they haven't earned it". Even though it sounds like the first category didn't earn their stripes because they had it easier than most. I know how rediculous it sounds to you but I know because of your experiences you do mean it. I know it isn't a contest but sometimes it does feel like who's list is longest. I have a hard time wrapping my head around all of it too. So as for the categories, I know I can't have empathy with those in groups other than #1 (and loss), I sure can and do have sympathy for each and every one of you who haven't had it easy. There are some amazing and strong women out there! Whew~ sorry this was so long!

Anonymous said...

hi there,
Some thought-provoking stuff here for sure!

There are some women out there (myself included) who have made the decision not to do IVF or any ART, drawing the line at IUIs. For my husband and me, our religious beliefs preclude us from going any further than IUI/Clomid/injectibles. (However, we are open-minded about other people making this decision for themselves and are delighted for everyone who goes to greater technological lengths than we and are able to get pregnant.)

My point in reminding you about ethics coming in to play is that you may look at my situation (ttc 2 years, many failed iuis on clomid and injectibles) and put me in a certain category, feeling that you have been through more than my DH and I have. However, for us, IUI is the last option of medical assistance, so a failed Clomid/IUI cycle is positively devastating because we know there will never be more than that for us. If IUI and Clomid or injectibles don't work, we will not be having biological children (unless there is a miracle).

I hear what you're all saying about supporting everyone no matter what category they're in, and I hope we all do really mean it (I think we do). It can be damaging to categorize people without knowing their FULL story. For example, I usually don't offer up my personal beliefs about ART because I want my friends to feel fully supported by me, and not feel that I am judging them for going forward with ART (as I said before, I have no problem with others doing it, it's just not something that's right for me). Likewise, I hope that others will not judge me for making the decision NOT to do ART.

You never know whether you're seeing someone's full story and their perspective, or just a portion of it, so please tread very carefully when categorizing people, even if it's only in your own mind.

Best wishes to everyone!

Juniper said...

I am what IFers call a "fertile," which is why I am not leaving the link to my blog. I have had some nasty comments directed to me simply because of that, and I just can't deal with any of those right now.

My perspective is one of someone who has had 2 extremely close friends struggle with infertility. One friend went on to adopt after 7years of trying, including 3 years of clomid and multiple IVFs, and
was the type who didn't have a jealous bone in her body about anything. I really wish I had her gift. ;) She rejoiced over all of her friends' and family's pregnancies, and accepted any and all support no matter how it came out. I love that girl, and we are still friends today.

My other friend struggled emotionally during her TTC time, and I did everything I could to avoid talking about my kids, spent time with her without my kids, and listened to her struggles without trying to sympathize or advise. I have not been there so I have no right to even try to do either. All I could do was listen and be her shoulder to cry on.

What is odd is that the 2nd friend became so nasty and hateful to me once she became pregnant with a surprise baby in between treatments. She suddenly began making comments that I wasn't as excited as she thought I should be because I could have kids "whenever I wanted to" and could not possibly understand the appreciation she had for this child. My heart just broke over this.

What is the point of my post? To be honest, I just wanted to say that as a "fertile," comments from IFers can really hurt, and it hurts when I feel that I am being attacked just because of a biological makeup that I have no control over, just as IFers heartbreakingly have no control over their biological makeup. I love and appreciate my kids with every fiber in my being, which I feel is just as strong as that of a mother who has had to struggle with IF, but in a different way.

I am just loving and appreciating my kids in the only way that I know how to.

How can I show support to my IF friends? The 2nd friend never distanced herself from me, which I would have understood if she had. She kept close to me, then turned on me in a way once she was pregnant. She even was extremely disappointed that she was having a boy, and at that point I had to say "enough." Sadly, we no longer speak to each other.

I got a little sidetracked there, and I apologize for hijacking your post, Nancy. My question to you is how should I relate to IF friends in this sort of situation? Have you experienced anything like this, and what did you find were the most supportive things said or done by any "fertile" friends that you had?


nancy said...

Juniper, I think just the fact you supported both your friends was all you could do. The fact your IF friend turned nasty on your wasn't your fault at all. Fertiles should not be scolded for conceiving easily - that's such a ridiculous notion. You are a good friend and I'm sorry you didn't get that in return!

Krista said...

I can see why you'd feel that way. Even with my relatively short ride on the TTC rollercoaster, I have a hard time being excited for anyone beginning to TTC. Its like if they get it right of the bat, then it just rubs me the wrong way.

Steph said...

Nancy, I apologize. I didn't even see the part where you were trying to say you weren't talking about MY comment, I didn't see the other one or what was going on, and I just assumed you meant mine since I mentioned the word "contest".

I responded to that before I went back and read the other things you'd posted.


joyous melancholy said...

I think the way we take the support of someone who's battled with IF and someone who hasn't can be likened to the sympathy at a funeral of someone who has never lost anyone they love compared to that of someone who loved the one you lost as much as you did. The words may even be identical, but there's something about KNOWING that the one saying them KNOWS what it will mean to you.

One of the biggest things I learned through my own IF experience was to not judge another woman's journey to motherhood. I don't think I appreciate my baby more than a woman who conceived easily can. I don't think I love him more than any other mother can love her child. I know that I am a different mother than I would have been if he had come to me easily.

But what you said rings true: the people who get seem to get offended the most and respond with the "there should be no difference between the ins/outs of ttc support" are (usually) the people who didn't go through infertility. Most people who did go through IF (and many who didn't) know that it's not a contest, that one journey can not be compared to another. Different doesn't have to be better or worse, it's just different.