Friday, June 19, 2009

Pain is Pain is Pain

This posts comes from the inspiring "Greener Grass: Greener Pastures" at Conceive This!

I have no problem admitting I played the pity card with myself because we have both male and female factor IF. I cannot believe I actually longed for someone elses situation over mine, but I did. One of the biggest lessons I have learned after digging myself out of my own black hole is that anyone experiencing infertility is in pain, lots of pain.

I understood secondary infertility and how hurtful it must be to not provide a sibling or have the big family you once planned on. In fact, I sometimes thought that secondary infertility must suck worse. Talk about being blindsided. Those who got pregnant within 3 months never could have imagined it would take 4-5 years to have a second. How frustrating and unbelievable that must be.

Even though I thought I understood secondary infertility, I didn't really. I believe after talking with several more people I really see it for what it is. People feel guilty for wanting another child when they have a beautiful child(ren) to take care of and love. If they open up to others about their situation most people shame them into trying so hard for a second or dismiss it completely because they got pregnant with no problem once. That automatically means there isn't a problem, right?

I see a difference between those who have tried for a long time without a successful pregnancy and those who were able to be pregnant and give birth and have started a family. I can see why the first situation looks more painful on the surface, but I also see that no one's pain should be categorized or dismissed. It all sucks.

It has been mentioned to me that I should just be thankful to have Luv Bug and stop worrying so much about another child, getting pregnant, or adopting again. I guess that puts me in the secondary infertility category, even though I am an adoptive parent. I was really hurt and offended when it was suggested that the pain I may still feel about not getting pregnant or wanting more children is not justified. Luv Bug is amazing. I cherish him more than anything in my entire life- he is my life. But, I also feel that I am entitled to feel the pain when I feel the pain.

As stated- it all sucks. When you have to go through years of tribulations and spend tons of money to become parents or expand your family, there is no hierarchy of pain. Each person's situation is their own; it is all hurtful, confusing, frustrating and life altering.

Thanks, Murgdan for writing such a great post.
Also, check out this Quotable Quotidian about "Navigating the Land of IF." Mel states it perfectly.


Beautiful Mess said...

I really enjoy spending as little as possible but still getting what I want/need. It's like a game for me. I found out recently that we get a $.03 credit on our grocery bill for every reusable bag we bring. I was SO excited! It isn't much, but it sure adds up!
P.S. Congrats on your award below. You deserve it!

Lisa DG said...

Pain is definitely pain and when we are in the throws of it, it feels like our pain in the worst it can be. I have learned, albeit slowly, to accept other women in their journey, even when I am envious. It was hard, at first, to feel for someone who already had their own biological child. I imagine that the longing and desperation is similar, no matter how you end up on the infertility crossroads.

Just Caz said...

I completely agree.
I don't think its right to compare pain with anyone.
We are all different and experience things differently.

A Mom in Jacksonville, FL said...

LOVED your post.

You hit my secondary infertility nail right on the head.

Along with the longing for another child, I have much of my daughter's college fund/future should DH and I spend in an attempt to have a sibling?

And as you said about your Luv Bug, my daughter means the world to me. What I think people often don't understand is that so much of my longing to have another child is FOR my daughter, because I believe in the importance of sibling relationships.

My sisters are my "forever friends." My sisters and I will get each other through the rough times (especially *gulp* when our parents die someday.) I want my daughter to have a "forever" companion in her life as well. Spouses are terrific...and my DH is supportive and is my best friend. However, my sisters understand my upbringing and can reminisce with me about childhood. This is a relationship I'm not willing to give up "dreaming about" for my daughter just yet.

Though my

'Murgdan' said...

I was so glad to hear from your side of the 'pasture'...Thank you for sharing your story.

Julie said...

I really appreciate this post. It helped me to understand why secondary IF is a painful thing. Thank you for helping me to gain more empathy for others.

Kristin said...

What a great follow up to Murgdan's post.

Clare said...

pain is pain is pain - amen. So true. Everyone feels it and you're right there is no hierarchy. We all have our own mountains to climb and they may seem like molehills to some, but for us they are our own difficult and seemingly impossible mountains.

Amber said...

I completely agree with you! Pain is pain and IF is no fun whether its your first, 2nd, or more kid.

Anonymous said...

Another great post here on Parenthood for me. Thank you.

In Due Time said...

Beautiful post. I think it's safe to say measuring ones pain is unmeasurable.

Nina said...

As usual. Exactly what I feel. I'm just not that articulate! Keep blogging!

Jeanne said...


Pain is pain is pain. Perfect title. This post is excellent. Everyone is different. No one can understand 100% what it feels like to be in someone else's shoes. This is a great post.


WiseGuy said...

I can't believe you were suggested that! It is horrible to decide about somebody else's reproductive rights without knowing their aspirations of it first...

There is pain on all sides of infertility.


nutmeg96 said...

I think people who judge others' pain haven't had any real adversity in their lives. Whoever told you to suck it up is someone who isn't worth listening to.


Cassandra said...

One problem with the pain comparisons is that many people can't imagine how anyone else's pain could be worse than theirs -- until they get a dose of that person's problems in their own life. I've certainly had that experience of thinking something must not be that hard until I went through it myself. I think this is one of the great things about our blog community -- we gain more understanding of others' experiences without having to go through it firsthand.

Happy ICLW!

Lisa said...

So well said. Pain should always be free of expectation and comparison or qualifiers. I'm outraged someone would equate your desire for another child as a perceived slight on Luv Bug or indulgence. How sad it is when others cannot step from their own cloak of self-rightousness or "pain" to empathize or extend kindess to others.....I'm so sorry


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