When your attempts to conceive month after month fail, it’s rough, especially since no one around you seems to understand what you’re going through. Unless they’ve been in the same boat, how could they?
Tackling infertility is a roller coaster of physical and emotional challenges for any couple. First, there’s the pressure from their own families, society and peers to have children. And when this doesn’t happen, dealing with the emotional fallout of feeling that something is wrong with them.
One of the first things that couples dealing with infertility can do is to educate themselves. In any case, they’ll need to understand what medical options are available to them before they can take the next step. You can use an array of websites, books and organisations as resources.
Next, finding support is crucial. Often, couples hide their grief, to the extent that they start to feel isolated. But if you are struggling with infertility, know that you are not alone. When you connect with others who have gone through similar fertility problems or are experiencing what you are facing, you can draw hope and inspiration for your own journey.
We’ve sussed out blogs that chronicle the experiences of couples who have faced, or are facing issues with infertility.
Often, couples hide their grief, to the extent that they start to feel isolated.
1. Our Misconception
The blog of Candace and Chris Wohl, a couple who had tried to conceive for seven years from 2007. From them, you’ll get both male and female perspectives on the daily struggles of living with infertility. This positive and spirited blog details how the couple overcome their “unexplained diagnosis”, six Intrauterine Inseminations, four surgeries, six IVF procedures, and the beginning stages of uterine cancer. Fast forward to 2013, they receive news that someone has volunteered to be their surrogate, and the following year, their little “Jellybean” arrives!
Check out: “The Dusty Onesie”. In this post, Candace shares with readers how she purchased a onesie back in 2009 ― each time she went through a fertility procedure, she’d take it out in readiness for the big news. But each time, she places it back in the closet disappointed. Finally, she shares that it’s time to gift the onesie to Chris ― in an adorable, heartwarming video, she announces to him that they’ll soon be parents.
2. Dreaming of Dimples
Written by Jessah, this blog is about her journey to conceiving her adorable baby boy Maverick. In 2012, Jessah was diagnosed with infertility and stage 3 endometriosis. After multiple failed IVF attempts since she embarked on her quest to conceive in 2009, Jessah and her husband receive the gift of donor eggs. Maverick was born last year.
Check out: “How NOT to get a divorce when going through infertility”. In this post, she discusses the stress that infertility puts on a marriage, the pressure that the men are under to “perform” on specific days of the month, and the exorbitant costs of fertility treatment.
3. Not just a Beauty Blogger
Married to the Ray, the “love of my life”, Nikol has been trying to conceive for the past three years. A former model, professional makeup artist and beauty blogger, she started documenting her IVF journey when she was diagnosed with “unexplained infertility” in 2013. Tackling infertility with positivity and style, she writes that she blogs to “keep me sane and to inspire and encourage other women that are also on their own fertility journey”.
Check out: In “Endometriosis Stage 3 – My story”, Nikol charts the timeline leading to her diagnosis of Stage 3 endometriosis. In it, she notes that she went through her whole life thinking that her “killer cramps” was normal and that every woman experienced the same thing. Stating that it took her 29 years to be diagnosed, she hopes that other girls and women will not suffer the way she did.
More stories up ahead… including one that details the writer’s IVF experience in Singapore.
4. My Little Soldiers
This honest blog sheds light on the secretive world of male infertility. Told from the perspective of wanna-be-dad Mike, it’s about his quest for a baby with his girlfriend Nyla.
Check out: “Tears”. Men aren’t always the stoic ones in the relationship it seems. This poignant post tells about the grief that men face dealing with infertility. He writes, “I cry for me. I cry for Nyla. I cry for us. I cry for my useless sperm. And then I start crying because I am crying. I am a man with dodgy sperm and I cry.”
5. My Selfish Genes
Manju Padmasekar, a 36-year-old mother from India, writes about her journey to welcome her daughter Anisha through a surrogate. Before her daughter’s arrival, she had endured several IVF cycles and three miscarriages, plus a still birth in which she lost her twins because of an incompetent cervix. A scientist by profession, she holds a doctorate in Human Biology and she believes that this has “helped me to tackle infertility bravely”.
Check out: “How to tackle the infertility blues?”, where Manju offers 10 tips to feel positive despite your diagnosis. Some of them include killing your self-pity, arming yourself with medical knowledge, continuing to socialise, plus counting your blessings.
6. Infertility Honesty
Sarah Chamberlin’s irreverent style and brutally honest take on infertility will often leave you nodding in agreement. After spending more than three-and-a-half-years trying to conceive, she has been diagnosed with Stage 3 endometriosis. “This blog is about those daily moments where I struggle with the changes, challenges, tough emotions, awkward social situations and loss infertility inevitably brings,” she writes.
Check out: “Future Generations: Nine Things Young People Should Know About Human Reproduction” This post isn’t preachy despite its title. Inspired by a chance meeting of eight youngsters who were discussing how many kids they intended to have, Sarah reflects deeply that not everyone will face a smooth road to parenthood. She writes that “one in eight women of child-bearing age will seek medical treatment for infertility”, and that “one in every four pregnancies ends in a miscarriage and one in every 160 births is a still”.
7. Growing with the Tans
Written by mum Adeline, this popular Singapore parenting blog documents life with her 3-month-old twins and her oldest son, Noah. Her kiddos were conceived via IVF, so she details each procedure in her blog. It’s a valuable and informative read for couples who are looking to start IVF in Singapore.
Check out: “The Baby We Almost Didn’t Have – Our IVF Story” is Adeline’s account of how she conceived Noah. She shares details on the IUI attempts and other medical procedures she went through, and even suggests what not to say to a woman who is struggling with infertility.
Main photo: iStock
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