Fertility Support Catch-All (including "alternative ways to acquire offspring")


A few of us have been bandying this about in the Random Things you Loathe thread recently, but there are enough of us talking at it that I thought it might be nice to have a specific thread for it. I suppose that some of the technology involved in reproductive assistance could be controversial enough to qualify for P&C, but I'm hoping that if we keep it to factual information and personal experiences, we can avoid anything that might cause this discussion to deteriorate.

My wife and I have been trying to have a child for the past year and a half, and it's not going well. There are biological factors at stake which we knew about - there was going to be no possibility of a child without medical intervention, but the issues were known ahead of time and we also know that medical intervention makes it possible for it to happen. Regrettably, this has made it difficult to ride out the past eighteen months, as we've seen failure after failure.

We started with some simple hormone therapy, escalated to Intra-Uterine Insemination (IUI, or as I like to call it to our doctor's incredible displeasure: the turkey baster), and are now into In Vitro Fertilization. We were able to harvest and fertilize a half a dozen eggs to the point of "maturity", and we've tried two cycles so far, neither of which has taken. The first one looked good, but the second pregnancy blood test did not avail itself of anything, so I think technically it was an "early miscarriage," as opposed to a completely failed implantation.

The hardest part of this process has been watching my wife. I don't, personally, care if we end up with a child or not at the end of the process, but she really, really does. I also deal with major issues like this in a VERY different way from my wife - I just deal with steps as they come, but she needs to plan out our journey for months ahead of time so that she can see the road ahead. Part of the strain this puts on our relationship, I think, is that she feels like I'm not engaged in the process, though I'm really trying. You know that old "joke" about the husband and wife, where the wife says "I want your opinion on X", the husband says, "I don't care," the wife says, "Make a decision," so the husband does, but the wife is still furious, and it turns out that it's not about the decision, it's about "I want you to CARE about this decision, not just to make one?" We haven't hit that point yet, and I'm not sure we will, but I think that's sort of running through her head from time to time.

The part that I HATE more than anything is the "advice" you get from people. One of my personal loathes is, "Just relax; it'll happen when it happens." No; no it won't. (See aforementioned statement about medical intervention being NECESSARY for us to conceive.) If people not going through this are reading - it's very much like non-parents giving parents advice on how to raise their kids. Just don't do it. If a friend unloads on you about their issues and you haven't experienced them yourself, the only acceptable response is, "I'm really sorry to hear that you're going through this. It sounds like it must be very hard." If you're feeling generous or helpful, you can add, "Is there anything I can do?"

We went through this too. First I had to have an operation "down there" since they said there were too many veins and causing excessive heat. The Dr, stated there will be 2 small incisions. He demonstrated the length with his fingers (about 1/2 inch). They had to go in to the pelvic region and tie off some veins.

In reality, each incision was at least 4 inches long and about 1 inch in between them.

Luckily after a few months, we did hormone injections and in utero fertilization.

I have twin boys now.

My wife and I did the IUI thing before we ended up adopting (I also called it the "turkey baster"...it is surprisingly apt). The thing I was shocked about was how low the success rate actually is, even with the more expensive IVF methods. If you told someone that you were betting thousands of dollars on a roulette table with only a 25% chance to win, people would think you were crazy.

Fertility treatments are very hard emotionally. It is an emotional rollercoaster and, for us at least, particularly hard on my wife. We did the treatment right before one of our anniversaries. On our anniversary getaway my wife discovered (in the natural way) that she wasn't pregnant. It was our hardest and worst anniversary ever. Our last treatment ended up in a particularly heavy (spoilered for grossness)


blood clot

which I believe was an early stage miscarriage. I will never tell my wife my belief on the matter.

Some states are better for couples with fertility issues than others. New Jersey is fantastic. A friend of mine went through just about every treatment imagineable; all completely covered by insurance. In Delaware, we had to pay everything out of pocket which is why we only did two rounds of IUI. Side note, my friend and his wife didn't have good luck either and also ended up adopting.

I only mention adoption because it was the route we and my friend took to bring a child into our lives. Adoption is not an alternative for everyone and comes with it's own significant difficulties, heartaches, and pitfalls.

Ontario's public health insurance does not cover fertility treatments, regrettably. My insurance through work covers some of the drugs, but none of the procedures. All in all, we're out of pocket about $30K over the last eighteen months. Luckily, both of our chosen careers are relatively lucrative, so while there has been some belt-tightening, we aren't really suffering for it so far.

We're looking into adoption, and also into surrogacy. After all, if we can make the blastocysts and just not carry them, then there's a chance to get someone else to do that part of it. There is a huge (relatively, of course, but I personally found the numbers to be quite surprising) community of people who have gone the surrogacy route online. In fact, there are clinics in India that basically organize everything for you - they find several potential surrogates for you to interview, they house the surrogate mother and her family while they are... I'm not sure of the proper term, so I'm going to use "incubate" and then duck and apologize preemptively in case any women around take offense at it... incubating the baby.

While I'm totally on board with the question of surrogacy, given a willing and well-cared for surrogate mother, I'm not really sure how I feel about the ethics of "outsourcing" pregnancy to India. Even factoring in the cost of the trips to the other side of the world, it promises to be an order of magnitude cheaper for us - but I still can't help but feel we're taking advantage of someone who may not have any other option. By all reports I've read, the surrogates are well-paid and well-taken care of by the clinic, but something about it still makes me feel like Gattaca, you know?

Also, most of the blog posts online about the process extoll the virtues of India by saying things like, "And you can get Pizza Hut! And there's a Hard Rock Cafe! I didn't have to eat ANY local food while I was there!" That's a whole other rant, but in summary: That's not how my wife and I travel.

Sorry, I didn't notice you were in Canada. I tend to default to "everyone lives in the US", which isn't true.

My cousin did surrogacy about 25 years ago with great success. He found a woman within the US but I don't know how. I'm sure there are services for finding women willing to surrogate domestically (even Canada ). I would suggest to do a lot of research into the legal aspect of surrogacy.

If you do have questions about adoption, there is an adoption thread around here somewhere where I (and others) have laid out our thoughts. Or feel free to PM me.

My condolences on the challenges and stress involved especially for your wife. I think it is great that you recognize the challenges for the two of you may be different and I hope you both get solid information that can be of help.

In our case we really wanted to be parents more than we needed to be pregnant. I recognize that is easy for me to say in part because while my wife and I adopted our first child, we also have a birth child and I also recognize each family's situation will always be unique. I also recognize that in part due to both evolutionary biology and social expectations, there is a tremendous focus on having your own child biologically and that there can be significant grieving if it turns out that option is not available for your wife. That said, I do hope more people can continue to find adoption as avenue.

The adoption thread Nevin mentions is here: http://www.gamerswithjobs.com/node/1... and feel free to PM me as well.

Yeah, sorry to break it to you, Feegle, maybe it's because I'm myself currently "incubating", but no, just no.

Seems to me you have a pretty lucid view of the situation, Feegle. You're very much aware that you and your wife have different challenges and experiences, which is super important. I think it's hard, sometimes, for men to understand how visceral the desire to carry a child can be. It's something extremely profound, very strong, and very difficult to convey. Although men can become very much involved in a pregnancy (haptonomy or the Talk to Baby Through Touch technique is a big example), it's not something you'll get to experience firsthand. And this can be extremely important to us women, sometimes getting very much intertwined in how we perceive and experience our own gender identity (more on that later).

First things first, the medical mumbo jumbo. Nevin, that's called varicocele and is actually not that uncommon. And regarding the 25% success rate for IVF and IUI, it's actually not low at all. It's on par with the conception rate for a "normal" couple. What most people don't usually know is that there's "only" a 25% chance of conception for a couple without any issues. It's just that they get to try the next month without any major hoops to jump through.

My own background. As some of you might already know, I'm a public health resident, which means I'm in med school. The system here is a bit different, and we start rotations in clinical services as soon as fourth year (post-high school). Which means I've had about 15 rotations in clinical services before I started my residency in public health. So my experience includes rotations in the ER, ortho, nephro, pediatric oncology and... the infertility center of the obgyn service. I saw firsthand what the process is like, and have a pretty good handle on the subject matter as a result. Little did I know I'd be on the patient side of the equation a year later.

Once my husband and I decided to have children, I quickly knew something was up. I was very proactive about it, and sought out consults rather quickly. I was diagnosed with PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome). It came as a shock, because I didn't fit all of the "classic" symptoms. Our world came crashing down. It was a very difficult time for us, and for me particularly. I felt guilty. I felt inadequate. Was I still a woman if I couldn't conceive and carry a child? (spoiler: the answer is yes, but it's hard to deal with at first) It's very difficult to voice exactly what goes through your head when this happens to you, but it shakes you to your core.
We got lucky, however, and after jumping through a few hoops, we were blessed with our son who just turned two. I was lucky enough to have a completely uneventful pregnancy. I had fully prepared myself to go through the ringer of tests and consults once more, but thankfully, we were unexpectedly expecting when I had my appointment to start up the process once more. And although we are doing okay financially, the French healthcare system is set up so that the treatments and procedures are fully covered (yay socialized medicine, I guess - they do set a limit of 4 IUIs and then 4 IVFs, though, after that, it's out of your pocket).
In the grand scheme of things, I got away pretty clean. The wait wasn't too long, our son is healthy and number two is on the way. We are acutely aware of this, more so because very close friends of ours went through 5 IVFs, a miscarriage, and 2 IUIs with donor sperm before they got pregnant with triplets. Adoption wasn't an option for them, carrying a child was very important to her. They lost one of the babies during the fourth month, and one of the surviving babies got diagnosed with Downs and died at birth. Their son is barely older than ours.
So yes, we got lucky, but those people who say that you forget all the bad stuff once your baby is here... It's not necessarily true. I'll always bear the scars of it. And in all likelihood, it's probably why I was so adamant about breastfeeding and it contributed to me BF'ing for 18 months (we would've gone longer, but that's another story). Because I was so angry and frustrated that my body wouldn't do what it was supposed to do, what it was designed to do. That I needed to have BF'ing, that I could take pride in the fact that at least I could do that right.

So there it is, my own background. I may be out of the woods, but I remember what it's like. The consult, the poking and prodding, the treatments, the pain and agony of yet another month, yet another failed attempt. So I'll be here to offer advice, explanations and what little comfort I can.

And Feegle is right, it doesn't help to hear "just relax, it'll happen when it happens/when you least expect it" or "when's your turn?" As a rule, I never bring up having children with childless couples. You never know if you'll reopen a very painful wound.

It's too early for me to contribute more than I did in the loathe thread... but thank you for creating this, and everyone for sharing, and I'm reading with great interest.

Hrm, hi. Yeah, so.

Partner and I are at the tail end of about the same amount of time trying: PCOS, interventions, variable levels of investment in the outcome, the whole 9 yards. We are finally successfully pregnant after multiple MCs, and guess what? All you do then is wait for the other shoe to drop. Every trip to IKEA or the baby store is a stress-inducing nightmare of "what if?" Let's not put this furniture together because what if. Let's not tell work/friends because what if.

Fertility issues f*cking suck. I don't have any advice other than it helped me to realize that more people than you think go through the same thing. That doesn't help the chances or anything, but like most things it at least helps to feel a little less broken/wrong/whatever if you can talk about it.

So, in the spirit of the thread, "anything I can do to help?" Since we live in the same city and all. =)

I'll share the "short" version here on my IVF experience. Luckily Illinois requires insurance carriers in the state to cover IVF so our expenses on the IVF front were limited by our $5000 high deductible plan. The coverage limits are 4 egg retrievals and if you have a live birth from an IVF cycle you can have 1 more egg retrieval on top of the 4. The main reason we did IVF though is for PGD (Preimplantation genetic diagnosis) as we have a genetic condition (sorry to be vague, but it can be life a threatening and disfiguring condition) that has a 50/50 chance of being passed to a child.

PGD is not covered at all by insurance so we ended up paying about $10,000 for it. The other difficulty with PGD is you need blastocysts (or blasts) to biopsy the embryo to be sent for genetic testing. Typically blasts are 5-8 days old where in the most common IVF cycles you will implant a less developed embryo with the thinking that they will thrive better in a uterus than in a lab. One bonus of blasts is that if they make it that long they are typically higher quality.

The trouble we had is if you get blasts then you need to have quite a few of them because there is a 50% chance they are affected by the gene and you can't implant affected embryos. On our first egg retrieval we got around 4 eggs fertilized out of 14 and 0 made it to blast so we couldn't even test. Heartbreaking. Second retrieval we got 5 or 6 fertilized out of 12 and 2 made it to blast so we tested them. Both were affected so we couldn't use them. Heartbreaking again. I don't know what other people's experiences are but my wife is very petite and the doctor even warned us he had to be rough to get at the ovaries to get as many eggs as he could. So each retrieval was a month of daily shots and almost daily appointments followed by a procedure that left my wife in pain for a week. For our third try the doctor was basically saying that this may have to be the last try for him at least, but we happily ended up with 10 fertilized out of 16 eggs and got 8 blasts. We did the test and there were 5 unaffected embryos!

We decided to transfer only 1 embryo (despite the recommendation of 2) and now we have a healthy 8 month old. We have 4 more embryos in the bank and we are crossing our fingers we will not have to do any more egg retrievals.

This truly was the very short version. I could write a book just detailing the problems we had between the fertility clinic and the actual IVF lab among many other details.

p.s. The foreign surrogate thing squicks me out a bit, but then again so did the foreign adoption process. Man, those Adoption Ontario webinars are depressing.

Reading up on everyone's experiences with fertility treatments is especially interesting to me because I may be traveling down that road in 2014. Long story short my wife and I have been trying for nearly two years. I have low testosterone and a borderline low sperm count (usually between 20 and 25 million). Every month when that special time comes around and my wife finds out she's not pregnant it's a huge emotional blow to us both but even more so to my wife. It's hard not to feel like a failure or less of a man because we are almost sure the problems are related to my sperm count. She's had blood work done and all her levels are in good shape the next step before a fertility clinic is to make sure everything is good with her "reproductive stuff" through xrays and the like.

My health insurance packs it's bags and runs like a scared little girl when it even thinks it hears the word fertility, so I know if we end up going that route it's going to get very expensive...very quick.

Thanks for creating this thread. My wife will be going into surgery in ten days for her endometriosis. The reason I'm sitting at my desk, in fact, is to look for low-fiber recipes for her last week prep diet. Any suggestions would be most welcome

So many things are swirling through my head right now: how our best friends are going through exactly the same with the same hospital (she had her surgery this Monday in fact), how the hospital lied to us to cover up their sh*tty communication and administration, how indeed this has been an emotional roller-coaster, how surprisingly many couples turn out to have similar issues when you 'come out of the closet', how powerless I feel towards my wife and how I wish I could share more of the burden, how last Monday I was diagnosed with appendicitis and had to undergo minor surgery myself two weeks before my wife's having hers - leaving me so very tired right now, ... I'm having trouble sorting all this out, and will hopefully be able to post more later.

Gumbie: you're not less of a man because your swimmers are not all Ian Thorpes and Michael Phelps. Just like my wife isn't any less of a woman because her reproductive organs are stuck to her intestines. And if any man ever dares to imply you're not a real man because of it, I'll strangle their little swimmers one by one

Gumbie wrote:

My health insurance packs it's bags and runs like a scared little girl when it even thinks it hears the word fertility, so I know if we end up going that route it's going to get very expensive...very quick.

Yeah, our health insurance policy covered NOTHING for infertility.

EDIT: removed mention of ACA.

I don't think there are widespread issues with insurance carriers not covering fertility in accordance with state laws, but here is a decent overview of relevant laws by state.


Still reading through all of this, but thought I'd chime in a bit. I was adopted, and my wife and I used IVF for our second child. It took us 2 rounds before it worked, but our daughter is now almost 2. Then, SURPRISE, we got pregnant again. We weren't expecting that. I'm 40, she's 42, and we had such a hard time with the last kid (over 2 years before we had results) that we didn't think we'd ever get pregnant again.

So, while it eventually worked out for us (we really wanted three kids, and will now have three kids) getting there was tortuous. Nothing undermines your self esteem quite like not being able to have kids, something that everybody else in the world seems to be doing with ease. In fact, GWJ got me through those times knowing that others had similar issues.

Adoption is interesting. I've always been a supporter as I was adopted at birth. I knew from an early age that I was adopted, and it made no difference. I also understand that it is a lot harder here in the states than it used to be 40 years ago.

On a side note, a lot of the gay and lesbian couples where I work are going through similar struggles with adoption, donors and the like. There has been a lot of heartbreak with adoptions not working out, or multiple rounds of IVF not working, so we've developed a small support community as a result.

PoderOmega wrote:

I don't think there are widespread issues with insurance carriers not covering fertility in accordance with state laws, but here is a decent overview of relevant laws by state.


I think the key word in the article is "offer" coverage. My wife and I have always had health coverage though our employers. Of course, there's no mandate that says employers must included the infertility coverage offered by the insurers doing business in our state.

ringsnort wrote:

I think the key word in the article is "offer" coverage. My wife and I have always had health coverage though our employers. Of course, there's no mandate that says employers must included the infertility coverage offered by the insurers doing business in our state.

Never mind about my first post here. I misread "our state". Move to Illinois or work for an Illinois based company maybe? Taxes suck, but you have this.

Ill. Rev. Stat. ch. 215, § 5/356m (1991, 1996) requires certain insurance policies that provide pregnancy-related benefits to provide coverage for the diagnosis and treatment of infertility. Coverage includes in vitro fertilization, uterine embryo lavage, embryo transfer, artificial insemination, gamete sperm artificial intrafallopian tube transfer, zygote intrafallopian tube transfer and low tubal ovum transfer. Coverage is limited to four completed oocyte retrievals, except if a live birth follows a completed oocyte retrieval, then two more completed oocyte retrievals are covered. (1996 Ill. Laws, P.A. 89-669)

My wife and I went through three miscarriages, and it was without question the worst time of my entire life. We wound up going to a fertility specialist who said we had nothing wrong with us, and were, in her admitted gallows humor, "clinically unlucky". Turns out repeated miscarriage qualified as a covered medical condition as infertility under my wife's insurance, so we started doing fertility treatments. It wasn't that we couldn't get pregnant, it's that we couldn't stay pregnant, and going through the treatments was honestly just some small way of trying to take control of our lives when we felt incredibly small and helpless. We did the "OVULATING SEX TIME NOW", progesterone creams, and eventually hormone treatments; my wife hates needles, and one of our most vivid memories is sitting on the kitchen floor getting utterly sh*tfaced drunk so I could get up the nerve to stab her in the leg with a needle, one of her biggest fears in life.

We did two cycles of IUI. The second one worked. I was sure he was going to be miscarriage #4, but he wasn't. He's 11. His sister came along naturally a few years later, she's 9.

So . . . those were my experiences. We considered adoption, as it was just getting far too hard to walk into the doctor's office and stare at an ultrasound machine, hoping it was working (it is hard for me to think of anything in the world I loathe as purely and utterly as ultrasound machines). We were in an infertility support group, and several of the other couples adopted. We have a number of friends who have adopted, and nobody thinks any differently of them; had we had another miscarriage, we probably would have gone the adoption route, and I have no doubt I would have adored those kids just as much as I do my biological ones. Biologically creating a kid takes a couple minutes. Being a parent is about commitment and love, and I have never met an adoptive parent who thinks of their child as "less" or any of that crap. You're a parent when you choose to become a parent, not when you ejaculate and hit the genetic lottery.

Anyways, my experiences. Which, actually, I haven't thought about in a long time, and it's getting awfully misty in here.

MilkmanDanimal wrote:

Anyways, my experiences. Which, actually, I haven't thought about in a long time, and it's getting awfully misty in here.


If there's one thing I learned, it's that there are a lot more of us struggling with these issues than we think. It's just that there's this taboo, and we never really talk about it. As time goes by, I've owned up to mine, although I still feel the weight of it. I'll still feel the guilt and inadequacy, but I try not to let it make who I am. And I find myself willing to admit in conversations that it was no walk in the park, no picture perfect conception in a night of passion on our honeymoon.

Gumbie, I understand what you're feeling and it's hard. I never fully goes away but you have to keep telling yourself that your swimmers aren't what make you you, just as my bubble wrap ovaries don't define me. I know how it is is though. The completely unromantic scheduled sexy time, the heart crushing failure each month, the needles, the ultrasounds (I sure as heck don't miss those)... It takes its toll. My heart goes out to you two, many hugs.

Dejanzie, from the top of my head I can't remember it all, but I know pretty much all vegetables are out, bread as well. I'll try and bust out a more complete list later this morning. Many hugs to the both of you.

Feegle, your comment on the "advice" people give is exactly the reason why my wife and I quickly stopped talking to just about everyone about our attempts to get pregnant. Beyond the generally unhelpful comments we kept hearing, there was an especially cruel kind of advice that implied we were somehow doing something wrong by even trying to find a medical solution. Yeah, people sometimes suck. After that exchange, we decided we'd had enough and just started saying we had our plans on hold. It was hard for us going it alone. On the plus side, at least we could have conversations with family without dreading where the topic was headed.

Our experience with ARTS (assisted reproductive technologies) started with a miscarriage three months after our honeymoon. My wife's OB/GYN was practically a family friend and we felt we were in the best possible hands as we dealt with the sadness and loss and our hope for success in the near future. Yeah, we had some family history working against my wife. As for me, I was butt old already (I'd recently turned 40). Fortunately, my motility turned out okay and tests showed the "boys" were highly "goal oriented." My wife had a tougher time, though. Though not really evident to us, she was diagnosed with P.C.O.S. and some of the problems and challenges that come with that. I really feel this is my wife's story to tell, so I'll just say that the guidance our friend and OB/GYN had us following turned into a "Groundhog Day" like cycle of optimism and disappointment that went on for five years. During that time we started doing our own research and making suggestions of our own to our doc. No no no, we were doing "exactly" what we needed to be doing we were told time and time again.

At some point I know in my heart I gave up. We kept going to treatments, out patient surgeries, sonograms sessions, and all of it. It was heartbreaking, and very expensive. I began to shift my words away from "we can do this" to "we'll be okay no matter what happens." And I knew my wife was getting there, too, when she stopped getting mad at any suggestion of giving up. We started canceling appointments and delaying future visits to the doc. None of this was discussed, but we quietly started focusing on other things and making other plans and getting on with life.

Then everything changed.

In the middle of the work day I got a call from my wife. I don't remember exactly what, but my wife was on some social media site and had exchanged messages with some distant friend of a friend or obscure friend of the family. A totally out of the blue conversation. Anyway, my wife was calling me to say she had the name and contact info for a new OB/GYN. And...she was making an appointment right away. This was crazy. The idea she would go to anyone other than our current friend and trusted OB/GYN? Unthinkable. No, unimaginable. We both took time off and went to meet our new OB/GYN. We liked her immediately. Smart. Optimistic. Platitude free. We ran some tests. When the results came back, our OB/GYN immediately referred us to an associate who specialized in reproductive endocrinology and infertility. Again, more tests. And a familiar procedure, one that we'd done again and again during our "Groundhog Day" nightmare. That worried us but we moved forward anyway. This time the hyperplasia didn't come back! We were off the treadmill and ready to move forward. We'd done the "turkey baster" several times before with our old doc so we knew what to expect. We met with our specialist, washed the "boys," and had the IUI. Boom! Pregnant! That was the most wonderful and awful day of my life. Yes, we were pregnant. I think we actually went through two full boxes of pregnancy test strips in a week just to make sure it was for real. We went back to the specialist for the official test. Pregnant. No doubt about it. The awful part was not knowing if it's going to be viable. The weeks ticked by. Still pregnant. At 14 weeks we announced and after 38 weeks we had our first baby girl. Wow. I still can't think about this without crying.

I don't know if there's anything really helpful about what I've typed here. It's just a brief telling of our path to becoming parents. Maybe the take away is to not be afraid to try another doctor. There's so much inertia that comes from building a close relationship with our health providers. And I think that, usually, that's a good thing. However, never let that relationship get in the way of trying other doctors and pursuing other options.

EDIT: Used the wrong acronym. IVI should have been IUI.

I will say there will undoubtedly be some support groups in your area; find them and use them. I'm far from an open person when talking about things like this; I'm extremely private, and I don't want to discuss personal things with anybody, let alone strangers. That being said, finding a group of people going through the same thing I was was beyond liberating, and getting somebody to understand that sense of emptiness and loss I had was incredibly helpful.

Support groups really are helpful. RESOLVE (http://www.resolve.org) is an excellent resource. I didn't do support groups, but my wife did. She read that men often get interested in sports to cope, and boy did I become a born-again softball nut.

It took us three years to conceive, and were ridiculously fortunate to be part of a study testing the efficacy of mini-IVF vs. traditional IVF that paid for our treatment, as my insurance only covers IUI (which was not successful for us). Mini-IVF involves fewer drugs and the implantation of only one embryo instead of several. Thankfully it worked on the first go-around, and we still have two blastocysts in cryo that we wave to whenever we pass the clinic.

Totally agree on how alienating an experience it is. Facebook becomes a minefield. The unsolicited advice of friends and family is uniformly awful. "Are you sure you're doing it right?" Thanks, dad, for reminding me why we're not closer.

I'm pulling for everyone here, whether it be through adoption, ART, or good fortune!

Dr.Awkward and I had to use the help of a fertility doctor to become parents. It's a humbling experience, in my opinion, seeking help for something that should come so naturally, and does, to so many people it shouldn't ( I was working in juvenile court at the time and I think if I saw one more 15 or 16 year old come in pregnant I may have lost it).

My insurance at the time covered it all (in CT) luckily except the $10 co payments...I think each round cost us about $120 out of pocket, and I know we are so lucky for that. We did clomid, ovidril and IUI..,two rounds, the first not working and the second giving us our twin boys.

Its a long and emotional rollercoaster, and just those mild hormones made me crazy, I can't imagine having to do heavier ones with IVF. It was like losing control of yourself, it was weird, and hard.

I wish all of you luck! I'm glad that there is so much talk/discussion and support here. I started a thread years ago on here when doc and in were going though it!

My wife checks in tomorrow afternoon at the hospital, surgery for endometriosis on Monday morning. She'll be under narcosis for about 10 hours. Even though the surgeons are among the best in the world, I'm still kinda nervous / scared sh*tless (going back and forth between those two).

Wish her luck (and save a little for me)!

Sending you guys all the positive energy in the world. I'm sure it'll go well but surgery is always scary. Just gang in there, breathe and you'll get through it. All the best++++

Wife is late this month. She's never EVER late, either right on time or a few days early. Took a test this morning...negative. We're both feeling pretty devastated right now.

dejanzie wrote:

My wife checks in tomorrow afternoon at the hospital, surgery for endometriosis on Monday morning. She'll be under narcosis for about 10 hours. Even though the surgeons are among the best in the world, I'm still kinda nervous / scared sh*tless (going back and forth between those two).

Wish her luck (and save a little for me)!

Best to you and your wife. Surgery is a big deal!

Gumbie wrote:

Wife is late this month. She's never EVER late, either right on time or a few days early. Took a test this morning...negative. We're both feeling pretty devastated right now.

How late? It will take time for a test to be positive, depending on the time it's taken and its sensitivity. I'm obviously not a doctor, but with my kids it was between 1 and 2 weeks after the missed period for the test to be positive.

My wife and I have the date for our third implantation: next Tuesday. We've done two rounds so far, the first got us a weak positive, followed by a negative, and the second got us nothing at all.

This time around, they've purposely given her an endometrial injury to cause the lining to inflame; apparently there is some research that suggests this might be helpful, though it's still in the early stages of trial and the human participant research did not use a control group. They're also going to implant two embryos rather than only one.

I can't express how much I hope this works. I really, really, really just want this over with one way or the other, because it's getting hard to watch what my wife is going through.