Facing Infertility Frustration
Infertility is associated with a lot of feelings.
Thank goodness for hope. It is the feeling that allows us to go on and try, in or out of fertility treatment.
I'm going to focus on just one of those feelings today.
Probably the best way of describing the way we feel when we can't get answers. When the answers are standardized and predictable and aren't necessarily the absolute answers, there is an even higher level of frustration that occurs.
And we can't always get answers. We can't always identify the problems or reasons why we can't conceive. We can't always know why a growing embryo stops growing or doesn't implant or even why a miscarriage occurs.
Sometimes we know absolutely and sometimes we know maybe and sometimes we simply don't know at all.
We think that knowing the answer will help. And often it will or it could. It could help if something could be changed for the next attempt at IUI (intrauterine insemination) or IVF (in vitro fertilization). Maybe the protocol would be changed or medications altered.
Often those things are shifted and modified with or without an answer.
Given the intricate and minute details of what has to occur to create and sustain a healthy pregnancy, it is often not possible to know definitively why the attempt to conceive hasn't worked.
We start there and come back, full circle. No answers that are definitive.
Asking Infertility Questions
Does it meant that your fertility specialists (board-certified reproductive endocrinologists, I hope!) don't know what they're doing? Aren't good enough? Should quit their jobs and find something they're actually good at?
Nope. It means that we don't know what we don't know. Science and ART (assisted reproductive technology) is amazing. What we know fills textbooks and is expanding every day. It's a field of medicine that is truly creating miracles and at lightning speed.
At the same time, we don't know what we don't know. We don't know all the intricacies of each step that is necessary for conception to occur and progress to a healthy baby.
So frustration remains. Answers are elusive. Infertility questions are unanswered or unsatisfactorily answered.
That is part of it. And perhaps it always will be. Perhaps even with knowing more and more, it will turn out that there are questions we don’t even know to ask yet. We will find more answers and that will generate further questions.
And so we will still end up with unanswered questions.
And frustration will remain a feeling closely associated with understanding infertility.
Perhaps the frustration comes more from the fear of being and staying unsuccessful in our quest to create our families. Isn’t that really the question? Will we be able to have the family we are striving for?
And for that, you will have an answer. Not as quickly as you might like. But you will have an answer.
May your answer be the one for which you are hoping. And may you find that answer quickly.
Lisa Rosenthal's Google+