Monday, June 30, 2014

Breaking the Silence

When I was first received my IF diagnosis, I did what any normal person would do and scoured the Internet for resources and answers. For hours. And days. While obsessing researching, I discovered a multitude of support networks online. It was like an underworld for infertiles! It took a while to find the right one for me but soon, I had found a group of incredibly supportive women, all at different stages in their journey and all knowledgeable about a plethora of topics revolving around treatment options, diagnosis and medications.

One of my goals (besides raising money, click here to donate), in being open about our infertility journey, is to raise awareness about infertility and what women who suffer with this disease go through. One of the reasons that Infertility is such a taboo topic is because people don't really know that much the diseases that affect a woman's fertility AND they don't understand the treatments.

To help raise awareness and combat disinformation, some of the ladies I know have offered to open up about their infertility, treatment, journey so far and plans for the future.

So, without any further ado, please welcome, my friend Kate!

Kate, How long have you been trying, what is your diagnosis, what treatment methods have you tried (and if you feel comfortable) what has been the financial cost of treatment?

·         We have been TTC since August 2011. After going off the pill and not having a period, we went to the doctor to figure out what was wrong. After a series of tests and ultrasounds, it was determined that I have hypothyroidism and PCOS. My husband also had a sperm analysis and that was deemed to be good.

o   After that we started medicated cycles.
§  4 clomid cycles
§  1 femera cycle with trigger
§  1 injectables only cycle with trigger
§  3 clomid and injectable cycles with triggers
§  1 clomid/injects/trigger and IUI
·         We discovered during this IUI that my husband’s good count is gone. The count and motility were down to basically nothing.
§  1 clomid/injects/trigger and IUI
·         Sperm count increased and had better motility
§  2 femera/injects/trigger and IUI

o   After this many cycles and no baby, we decided to take a much needed break. Financially, these cycles cost about $1000-$1200 each- including monitoring and medications. Additionally, I traveled to St. Louis Mo (4 hours away) for each monitoring appointment.

How does being infertile affect your life?

·         I have a hard time being around children nowadays. It is physically painful to see them (especially my friend’s children) and makes my heart ache. I have lost friends over this battle due to comments they have made. Recently a friend of mine who knows every step of our journey told me that she “wishes I would hurry up and have kids so we can be in the same place in our lives”. I would if I could!

What made you decide to “come out” about your infertility? OR Are you open about your infertility?

·         I was fairly quiet about my journey, but I wouldn’t say I wasn’t open. This year at Christmas my sister put together an indiegogo fundraiser for me. She was able to raise $600 and surprise me with me it. After that, I have been very open. I have a blog that I kept updated and linked to my Facebook account, but I haven’t posted since our break started.

What made you want to do IVF?

·         We have not decided to move onto IVF at this time. Right now we are seriously considering a childfree lifestyle.

What is the hardest part about treatment?

·         The hardest part about treatment would be all the hormones raging through you. They gave me the worst mood swings ever!! I felt so bad for my husband.  Look up ecards on Clomid and you will understand. J Honestly, it really took a toll on my marriage.

What is something you would really like people to understand about infertility?

·         Infertility is a heartbreaking disease. Please be sensitive about your comments, even those about your own children. There are people out there who would love to be in your shoes.

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