Broken Silence: Thoughts on Infertility

When do you plan to have kids? When will you have kids? You guy aren’t getting any younger you know. There go that dreadful question and statement. I hear it all the time. I have some friends, not so close friends as well as a few acquainted people who either are curious or simply loves to pry. I understand their curiosity, but some people just don’t seem to get it that there are certain topics (such as infertility) that people are not comfortable to talk about. I mean, some people just can’t take a hint – if my answer is always the same such as “someday” if not soon or in god’s time. Somehow my reply always warrants another statement “prioritizing your career is great, but having kids would make a great difference!”.

… like I am not aware. I’m not or to be exact, we are not stupid. Why wouldn’t we want to have kids while we are still in our prime? My husband and I have been with each other for quite some time now. We do want kids. It’s not like we ruled out growing our family but just so happens, we have our challenges.

It’s just tiring. Absolutely draining. When my Mama asked how come we don’t have any yet, I tried to explain what infertility is. So my mama said, we will pray for it. That God works in mysterious ways, and there’s nothing impossible with him. While I understand what she means, I felt like praying alone just won’t be enough to create our miracle. Bless her heart, I wish I have as much faith as she does. Then other family members started asking questions – and when we give out the same answer as we always do, their reply is that we should see a doctor or who is the problem. I am simply out of words.

IVF Tip JarPIN IT! What is infertility? It’s simple. It’s the inability to conceive children or carry a pregnancy to full term. Its is, however, treatable by a medical professional.

What are the treatment options available? Medication, Insemination, and IVF or In Vitro Fertilization.

Check out this article by UCLA Health:Infertility: Symptoms, Treatment, Diagnosis

What the majority don’t understand is that those who are suffering infertility, it doesn’t only affect them emotionally and psychologically, it is also financially challenging. Truth be told, challenging is an absolute understatement. It’s a battle. Some get away with just meds. A few who only needed insemination. There’s a handful who gets lucky only to need one round of IVF (but this method is already costly), but what about those who needed to keep going? Mortifying and heartbreaking.

military wife bloggerPIN IT!Ever since my husband and I explored all the options, we were faced with numerous challenges. We started looking into infertility treatments years back. But working for the military had us dangling in between different countries and what not. While he was stationed in South Korea, we started seeing doctors. We had to set everything aside when we had to face other family challenges. When we’ve decided it is time to resume our journey, we immediately started the process. We were then surprised to find out that our “best option” is the IVF route.

consider reading this editorial:The Cost of IVF: 4 Things I Learned While Battling Infertility

What is IVF? IVF or In Vitro Fertilization is the process of manually combining an egg and sperm in a laboratory dish. One fertilization occurs, the embryo will be transferred back to the uterus.

On average, IVF cost of a basic IVF cycle in the U.S ranges from about $12,000 – $15,000. Although some insurance companies cover IVF, often they don’t. – IHR.com – IVF Costs, In Vitro Fertilization Costs (accessed January 1, 2017).

Since we’re a military family, our insurance is Tricare. To cut the long sob-story short, Tricare does not cover IVF, not even IUI’s. While that is frustrating, there are Military Treatment Facilities* that offer IVF medical training programs. This means certain procedures have limited coverage. Overall, military families who participate still have to pay out of pocket and will be responsible for all costs.

infertilityPIN IT!

I’ve posted my queries in the support group for military spouses in our area. Then I proceeded to search if anyone else has a post similar to mine. All the while, swallowing my pride and embarrassment to have to post about our “personal issue.” as it’s not easy to simply let the cat out of the bag. Even more, putting your business out there to complete strangers.

Like a blessing, I came across someone’s post about Reproductive Medicine Associates of NJ and their Helping Heroes Build Families program.

ivf Reproductive Medicine Associates of NJPIN IT!

Right away, I looked up Reproductive Medicine Associates of NJ. They established the “Helping Heroes Build Families” program in 2012 which provides ONE complimentary IVF cycle. This program is dedicated to helping New Jersey-based active duty military personnel and their spouses. You can only imagine how happy we are at this point to be living in New Jersey!

While the IVF cycle is complimentary, this does NOT include medications, anesthesia, genetic testing, screening, acupuncture, oocyte donation, etc. We didn’t even bother wondering about the rest. We scheduled an appointment right away. Since my husband is retiring this year from the Air Force, we want to try and grow our family while he is still in the military. Time is ticking.

If you’re a resident of New Jersey, currently active duty (or spouse) and are looking into growing your family with IVF, I highly suggest looking up RMANJ. In fact, they recently announced that the program would continue into 2017 – now in its fifth year.

read the announcement here:RMANJ Announces 5th Year Of ‘Helping Heroes Build Families Program

For those of you who are interested in IVF treatments but are not residents of New Jersey, feel free to look up the following ***Military Treatment Facilities that offers IVF procedures.

» Wilford Hall, Lackland Air Force Base, in San Antonio, Texas
» Tripler Army Medical Center in Honolulu, HI
» Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda, MD
» Naval Medical Center in San Diego, CA
» Madigan Army Medical Center, Tacoma, WA

I’ll be sharing more updates in regards to our journey. Feel free to follow along, and if you have any questions, you can message me directly or use the comment box below.

Comments

  • Ameena

    I am in tears. If I were in your shoes I don’t know how I can even keep up with such questions. I would break down every single time. I would be mad too. You have such beautiful heart and you don’t deserve to go through this troublesome situation. No one deserves to go through infertility. So so sorry that even family member of yours don’t consider how you or your hubby might be feeling.

  • candy

    It would extremely be nice if people would keep their opinion to themselves. Non of their business and that include family members. We didn’t have kids soon enough. Then on our last child it was wow don’t you know how to prevent that. Go away people.

  • Rcel

    I have no idea that IVF is such a tedious and expensive process. I didn’t even realize that some people may actually be going through such problems. But I was never insensitive and I never pried on my friend’s business. When they share their story, I simply make sure to be there to support them. I hope you two are finally blessed with an angel soon.

  • Lisa Lowrey

    I hope people would start thinking first before saying something. Often times they all just blurt out what comes to mind. I know we all have different beliefs but that is not a reason to push your own ideals to others. I am very sad that such a beautiful such as yours have to endure this kind of situation. I pray and wish you all the best.

  • Anonymous

    Thank you for sharing this. We haven’t been officially diagnosed by a professional, but we’ve been trying for a while now and still have no luck. I am wondering if you can recommend other methods or ways aside from IVF?

  • Chloe

    I’ve had friends who have experienced IVF and I couldn’t believe the costs. Thank-you for being so open about your struggles. I’m sending positive vibes your way and I wish you all the best with your journey. Hopefully in the near future you will have a beautiful baby in your arms.

  • Cátia

    It’s absurd that people are so insensitive. It makes me cringe to just read what you’re going through. You are so brave for opening up and sharing your story to us. For that I commend you. You and your husband are amazing! I wish you both success.

  • Jay

    While some people think they are showing concern, they dont know that they are doing more harm than good. If they dont have anything good to say and if the answer is the same, they should take a hint. But they don’t. It’s sad people are much more insensitive nowadays.

  • Jane

    Are there natural ways to try to conceive or fight infertility?

  • Louis

    You are such a strong woman. Even stronger for sharing this to us publicly. Seriously though, these people that don’t know and if you are not telling them anything they should leave that topic alone and mind their own business.

  • Liberty

    I have no words for your pain. I can’t say I know how you feel because I am not going through it. I am sure that it is hard but no way will I ever know how hard or how painful unless I actually have a first hand experience.

  • Amber

    I am so impressed with you sharing your story. My husband and I have just begun IF treatment and prior to that, we tried for a year… and I got diagnosed with cancer during the testing phase of IF tx. Now that I’m cancer free, we are picking up where we left off. I am looking forward to following your journey… cheering for you and crying with you and all the I’m between that we IF warrior feel from time to time. Keep sharing how others can help and how they unintentionally hurt… I think when they learn, they will do better. I have come so far with my friends and family, teaching them about how to be sensitive to our issue. All the hugs fellow warrior.

  • Toughcookiemommy

    I am so touched by your honesty in this post. I had trouble getting pregnant with our first son and it was very difficult. I hope you find your path through this journey and have a positive outcome.

  • Heather

    I want to tell you something. You are beautiful. My grandfather, husband and dad all served this country, so thanks to your family and your husband for your sacrifices. I know it’s not always easy. I am one who never wanted kids. I’m 40 now and I am very happy with that decision, but I understand many women long for them. Please do not let it define you. I am a cancer survivor and I made the decision to have my uterus and fallopian tubes removed almost three years ago. Just remember your womanhood and worth is not defined by an ability to have kids. You make sure to stay happy and focus on your marriage and each other. I am wishing the best to you.

  • bitesforfoodies

    I am have so many friends that are dealing with infertility issues right now, and it is so so sad. They want nothing more than to be mothers, and they can’t. Two of my friends are on their FOURTH round of in vitro! It’s so disheartening.

  • HeidiDee

    I applaud you for sharing your story and think it is important for more people to do so! There is such a lack of understanding when it comes to these things and the more “out in the open” it becomes to people who don’t suffer through it, the more they start to understand. I went through 3 years of treatments and a multiple pregnancy that *thankfully* ended up with one healthy child. The questions before, during and after the pregnancy were unbearable at times. A while after I shared my story and received an outburst of support, apologies and a lot of women telling me that they were secretly going through some of the same issues!

  • Stephanie Jeannot

    Why don;’t you tell folks when they ask you to mind their business, though that might come across rude but it is also rude to nudge at you for an answer and unfair. The photo of you and your husband is beautiful.

  • Terri Steffes

    This was my journey 32 years ago. You can imagine the progress they have made in this area. I will pray, I have seen God prevail where science couldn’t.

  • Charlotte

    I wish you all the luck! infertility can be a huge drain on a family, financially and emotionally, my mum had real trouble concieving after I was born and it has meant there was 10 years between my brother and I but he was born via IVF successfully so fingers crossed for you and your family xx

  • Kathy Myers

    My sister and her husband went through IVF and today I have a beautiful niece. She is such a blessing to our family.

  • Sara

    Oh my gosh, this is such a heartbreaking post! People do not realize how expensive and difficult infertility is. Thank you for sharing such a personal story. I am so happy to see that you found a wonderful place in NJ to help you. I hope that it is successful on the first try!

  • Missy Burson

    I totally get this! Endometriosis rendered me infertile and I endured questions about having kids or years, as if it was my choice. Thanks or being so brave and sharing your story!

  • Emma Spellman

    I was told I could never have kids and now I have two boys. I lost one at 3 months and the feeling was horrible. I really hope that you are blessed with a child soon. Lots of baby dusts and prayers sent your way.

  • rika

    Sorry that you have to go through this! I’ve heard of IVF treatment before and read many sucesfull stories.I am looking forward to reading more updates from you.

  • Michele d

    I was told that me and my husband would have a hard time conceiving a child. After having four children they were wrong. Keep trying. Miracles do happen.

  • Kit Stanwood

    So sorry to hear that your going through that and that people keep bothering you about it! You have a lovely looking family and fur baby hehe. It is so expensive for other options!! I wish you both the best of luck!!

  • Rebecca Swenor

    This can be a very touchy subject for so many people. It is awesome you are sharing your story and thoughts. Reproductive Medicine Associates of NJ sounds amazing along with their program. I can’t wait to hear more about your journey. Thanks for sharing and I know you sharing will help other too.

  • Terri Beavers

    My sister had to go through a lot to become pregnant and it was so expensive. Now my daughter is researching options to help her conceive. I’ll send your post to her. I really want another grand baby.

  • Theresa

    I’m sorry that you’ve gone through such a hard time having a baby. This was a very inspiring post for anyone going through something similar!

  • Joanna @ Everyday Made Fresh

    I can’t relate, but I can understand. Both my best friend, and my sister-n-law had a lot of trouble getting pregnant, and then carrying to term. I saw the frustrations and pain that it can cause first hand. It’s hard. My best friend had a son (he just turned 15) and twin girls who will be 12 this year. My sister n law has two boys, The oldest will be 7 this year, and the youngest will be 2. Don’t give up hope!! Sending prayers your way!

  • Roxanne

    It sounds like you are working really hard to make this dream come true. Everyone has their advice and their unfiltered responses, but I’ll just wish you the best of luck achieving your dream!!

  • Jean

    I can relate to this as I too am suffering with infertility. Whilst it is still early days, it still doesn’t make it any easier each month. I wish you all the best with your journey and hope it all works out for you.

  • Heather

    It’s so hard dealing with infertility issues. I dealt with them for a year and consider myself lucky to have gotten pregnant and had my son and then a second by surprise, but I too dealt with the same questions from my mother in law. I hate when people get in your business like that. I wish you and your husband the best of luck. Maybe 2017 will be your year!!

  • Courteney Noonan

    I can’t imagine how this must feel for the both of you 🙁 I really think infertility needs to discussed more in schools etc. I’m not saying that you could ever prepare for it, but everyone should definitely be aware of it x

  • Bonnie @wemake7

    I’m sorry your going through this and I hope everything works out for you. I’m glad you reached out to people and was able to find some information on a group that could possibly help.

  • CourtneyLynne

    Omg girl I can’t even imagine!!!! My hubby has a cousin who went through IVF and succeeded right away with it with twin boys no less!! So miracles really do happen!

  • Marielle Altenor

    A lot of people don’t understand the pain that people with infertility go through. I try to be alway mindful when it comes to talking about babies to my friends that do not have any because you just don’t know what they are going through. I’m glad you were brave enough to as questions in a Facebook group.

  • Lauren at The Zero Waste Memoirs

    I’ve been through the same TriCare run around. I’m so sorry you are dealing with this pain, in addition to all the prying from people who have no idea what you’re going through. Thinking of you!

  • Toni

    A friend of mine and her husband have a similar story. You will definitely be in my thoughts and prayers.

  • Bread

    Good luck on your journey.

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