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Revisiting IVF?

on December 30, 2013

Yesterday, while we were driving to the grocery store, The Husband asked “so, why aren’t we doing IVF again?”

I should admit that when it comes to TTC, I am the one calling the shots. I did all the research, I weighed the options, and then I presented my findings and suggested course to The Husband and he said “okay.” So I have told him that I don’t want to do IVF and why, and he has said “that sounds reasonable.” However apparently he never actually gave it much thought on his own.

Because of the lack of online resources and support for men, I have bought him a few books about infertility written by men and he has read two; “swimming in circles” and “what he can expect when she’s not expecting.” Next on his reading list is “how to make love to a plastic cup.” I am really glad he’s been open to reading these, and I feel like besides getting the support part of knowing he’s not alone, he’s learned a ton about infertility treatments beyond what he got from asking me questions. I’m sure the male perspective makes it easier to understand. It turns out that an unexpected other result is he now is questioning why we’ve already blocked the road to this treatment that most IFers do.

I explained to him, trying very hard to stick to “this is just my opinion” type language instead of ” this is what’s happening and don’t you question it.” As confident as I am with my choices I want him to be included and have his needs met too. I reiterated that the cost,
partnered with relatively low success rates, the fact that we would probably have to do it multiple times AND that because our infertility is unexplained there’s no reason to think it will work are why I don’t think it’s a good choice for us. I also told him that if we did IVF and it didn’t work, and we were so in debt we’d need years to recover before we could adopt, that I would be DEVASTATED. I tried to really emphasize this as much as I could without being dramatic.

He then said that he doesn’t know much about it but it seems like something we should try. I quipped “and how are we going to pay for it!?” Maybe just a little too defensively, and he called me on it, “I’m just asking questions, calm down,” so I told him that I already know where I stand but he’s welcome to do some research and we can talk about it. That if we could pay for that and adoption, and he really wanted to do it, we could. And that’s where we ended it.

But you know the weirdest part? In both of the books he’s read so far, the IVF didn’t work. One couple did about 5 failed cycles before moving on then randomly getting pregnant naturally, and the other ended up doing 10 (TEN!!) failed IVFs before having twins via surrogate. I pointed out to him that it’s a little ironic that reading those books led him to want to do it, but apparently he feels better about our luck.

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8 responses to “Revisiting IVF?

  1. You and your hubby make a good team. I think it is important that you are including him and he is questioning you, but that you both ultimately want what is best for the both of you. I like that he has read up on this per your suggestions (the book titles are perfect, by the way!). I feel like most of the time, I steer the wheel just because it’s my body and my emotions that are most whacked. But truthfully, in marriage, this is our decision. Good post!

    • InfertileMyrtle says:

      Thank you! There were definitely a lot of fights and tears that got us here and I know as our journey goes on and changes there will be new challenges, but we try really hard!

  2. Did your hubby enjoy the books? I have such a hard time getting mine to read anything (besides sports statistics – haha). I get where you are coming from though. I’m also feel discouraged these days.

    • InfertileMyrtle says:

      He has liked them so far. He does enjoy reading in general though. Though I think he has learned quite a bit more about treatment I think just reading the thoughts and experiences these men were having and saying “yes, that’s just how I felt!” Has been really validating for him.

  3. I never thought to recommend DH read books about infertility but it makes total sense. Thanks for the idea, he likes reading too.

    I’m sure you’ll make the right decision for the both of you. Good luck!

    • Mallory says:

      So far he has said “what to expect when she’s not expecting” has been his favorite. It’s by Mark Sedakis I think. Check it out!

  4. A. says:

    Deciding the course and extent of treatment is such an individual path for every couple, especially when there’s no insurance, so it’s good that you guys are talking about it. One thing I’ll say is that I was “unexplained” for the first 2 years also, but IVF is diagnostic in some ways. Much understanding can be gained from watching the embryos grow, and if it fails, it can point you in the direction of where to look next. If you’re not up for it, then that’s cool too. I just wanted to throw that little bit of experience out there. Wishing you peace and success on your journey…I know how hard it is.

    • Mallory says:

      Yes that’s one thing I’ve considered, that if we did IVF we may find out I have bad eggs (though my reserve is fine, quantity doesn’t mean quality) or that the sperm and egg aren’t into each other. Then at least we would know why!

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