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Friday, April 29, 2011

National Infertility Awareness Week - Myth Busting All Over the Place!!

Myth: As soon as you adopt, you’ll get pregnant.

Resolve is an amazing organization sponsoring National Infertility Awareness Week (NIAW) to shine the
light on this devastating disease.  As their website states:

RESOLVE’s goal is to increase the conversation about infertility and to inform the public that:

*Infertility is a disease that affects 1 in 8 couples of reproductive age
*There are many ways to build a family 
*Help reduce the stigma by bringing attention to the details/issues/costs surrounding all ways people diagnosed with infertility can build a family.
*Understand when to seek the help of a specialist

One big way this can be done is to tackle some of the myths associated with Infertility.  I remember all too well how frustrating it was to try to explain to the people in my life what I was going through while actively trying to get pregnant.  Virtually everything others tried to say to help ended up being hurtful and aggravating and only served to isolate me further with my pain that no one seemed to understand.  And given that those things were generally said while I was also dealing with a particularly draining or painful treatment event did not make for a time when I felt like gently educating those around me.  Usually I would instead snap and say something mean and then I had some nice guilt to pile on my already large load.  I can remember one time standing paralyzed in the middle of my yard, utterly speechless (couldn't even find the words to tell my husband what was going on at the moment), completely dumbfounded (jaw-dropping dumbfounded) and sobbing over something someone had said.  The tears were coming so fast and were so abundant that I couldn't even see - and I am not normally a cryer.  By helping to educate others on Infertility, I hope to spare other Infertile folks some of those frustrating and painful conversations and moments.  If more people understood the truth about Infertility and let go of the myths, the chances of saying something hurtful would decrease for sure.  And trust me, the last thing an Infertile couple needs is more hurt.

So, here I go to bust a myth.

Myth: As soon as you adopt, you’ll get pregnant.

Resolve says Busted!: This is a myth!  Adoption does not guarantee or ensure pregnancy, and it should not be used as a means to try and get pregnant.  Pregnancy is a biological process, and a couple can not determine if and when they will become pregnant.

Let me expand on what Resolve says about this myth and have a little mini-rant too.  Why someone would say this to someone else is just beyond my comprehension.  So, John and Jane Doe have depleted their savings to go through many, many cycles of varying medical interventions to try to become pregnant.  Clearly those doctors didn't know what they were doing because the obvious solution is to adopt since that is most definitely part of the biological equation necessary for a successful pregnancy.  All those people out there with biological children without adopting - yeah, you all are freaks of nature!  You should have had to suffer for months and years of failed cycles to then be placed under someone else's judgement of whether you are worthy to raise a child before being allowed to adopt and THEN you can get pregnant.  On second thought, I wouldn't wish that on my worst enemy.

Not that adoption isn't a wonderful and beautiful thing - it just isn't the cure for the infertile body.  Adopting won't fix what is wrong inside the reproductive parts or the endocrine system or the many other causes of infertility.  Adopting won't magically set the stage for a successful pregnancy.  Adopting simply builds or expands a family.  Whether the infertile couple goes on to experience a successful pregnancy or not has no correlation to the adoption itself.  I didn't go into adoption expecting to get a pregnancy out of it.  I wanted a baby - I wanted to be someone's mommy - I didn't care how that child came to be.  And to excitedly insinuate that a pregnancy could result from an adoption is like insinuating that adoption is second best and that the mother won't be a bona-fide mother unless she births a child and thank goodness she adopted so that she could finally get that elusive pregnancy and be a true mom. 

Oh we know that isn't what you meant but that sure is how it feels.  I mourned pregnancy because I wanted the experience of it, of birth, of nursing.  I wanted the sickness and the aches and pains and sleepless nights and waddling walk.  I wanted to feel a baby move and kick and tumble inside of me and push my belly outward.  I wanted to have that baby all to myself for 9 months before giving birth and finally seeing the face of the child I carried.  Genetics never had anything to do with it.  I was already in the habit of collecting up family members that had no genetic ties to me anyway and I never felt like that was a requirement to be family.  I still hoped for the chance to grow our family through a successful pregnancy but I certainly didn't think Reagan was going to be my magic key to the pregnancy and birth experience.  And guess what?  She wasn't.  And neither will her soon to be brother.  And that's ok.  Because I get to be their mommy and that is the best thing in the world! 

I do hope others will take a little time to become better educated about Infertility.  Knowledge and understanding really go a long way to helping to support your friend, family member, coworker, neighbor, etc. who may be infertile.  A great place to start is here - http://www.resolve.org/infertility101.  For more information about the background of National Infertility Awareness Week® (NIAW), visit: http://www.resolve.org/takecharge

Thanks so much for reading!

1 comment:

Shrinking Mommy of 2 said...

Great post! I didn't like when people would say that to me (adopt then you will be preg)..Annoying!

Your story sounds so much like mine. I stumbled upon you blog...love it

 
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