In recent times, the rate of infertility has increased amongst many couples and partners. More and more people join the “waiting list” to have children. As a result of infertility issues, many couples go through various challenges in the process of having children.
Relationships between spouses sometimes get strained and other times strengthened in the journey of ‘unintentional’ childlessness. It never gets easy on any couple that are waiting for conception. My name is Maya*, and I am about to share nuggets from my story with you. I hope this helps you to handle childlessness and infertility issues in your marriage/relationship.
Some couples might not desire to have children, that is okay, but those who do, find it very difficult to fathom why they cannot conceive and have children. I have been on the waiting to conceive for 17 years, seven months and three weeks and still no sign of a breakthrough.
There are days I feel like quitting the whole journey of infertility, and there are other days that I just look up and thank God that I am still alive. One thing is sure; I am not the only one waiting to have my (own) children, so I even pray, trust God, and encourage others like myself.
People face different issues regarding infertility. Some always miscarry, and others haven’t even missed their monthly cycles. It is a complicated issue that has many sides to it –please always encourage couples you know that are yet to have children.
From my experience, here are some of the ways you can deal with childlessness and infertility:
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#1. Try your possible best
People would suggest all manner of things (both sensible and senseless ones) to you. All you can do is try your possible best. Follow your instincts and avoid senseless acts that might compound issues for you.
IVF (In-vitro fertilisation) has come to stay, but there is a certain degree of failure associated with it. I have done IVF eight times without success. The money, time and other resources seemed wasted, but I am happy that it works for some lucky couples.
If you have the means (money) and your doctor gives you a “go ahead”, keep trying and pushing until you get your desired result –your babies. And if you don’t have enough money to continue with the IVF procedure, don’t beat yourself up. You have tried your best, and the next thing to do is to continue to be hopeful.
#2. Stay sane
Above all, please stay sane. No one else feels your pain the way you do. I understand, it’s a pain that cuts deep into the soul, but please stay sane.
It can be demoralising and absurd to hear tongues wag and eyes roll any and every time you walk past. It is as if your presence reminds people of what to talk about. But, you are the one going through the situation and not them. So, please ignore them and try to maintain your inner peace as much as possible.
Your emotions can also play a tricky role as you struggle and fight to have a baby. Suddenly, you become extremely sensitive to everyone and everything around you. I used to feel that way, and I am still struggling with it, though.
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For example, when people look at me, I feel they are doing so because I don’t have children, and when they look at me, I would say they purposely did that because I don’t have children yet. You just end up suspecting people around you, and they might just be genuinely admiring your dress or smile. Keep your sanity, and don’t be sentimental. Remember, those people are not your problem, it is the reproductive biology. Stay sane!
Trust me, it can be hard to stay sane when you are trying to have children, but you just have to. There are no two ways about it. It is good for both your mental and emotional health.
When it becomes overwhelming, I get on my knees within the confines of my bedroom and cry out to God to help. After all, Hannah in the Holy Bible didn’t bother other people with her petty feelings. Instead, she went to the temple and poured her heart out to God, who then heard her cry.
You, too, can do the same to stay sane and maintain your inner peace.
"There are days I feel like quitting the whole journey of infertility, and there are other days that I just look up and thank God that I am still alive."
#3. Guard and shield your heart from negativities
Childlessness and infertility can turn a very jovial person into a bitter person. You won’t even know when bitterness creeps in. So please, in all you do, guard and shield your heart from all negativities such as bitterness, envy, jealousy and the rest of them.
When you see your friends and the people you got married just about the same time with, having and raising their children, be genuinely happy for them. Only wish the same for yourself and don’t activate the negative side of the issue.
As you guard and shield your heart from all negativities, don’t maltreat other people’s children or act in a wicked way to your friends and family members just so they could feel a bit of what you are going through, please don’t!
Don’t become a shadow of yourself or turn into something else because you are looking for children. Radiate joy in such a way that you will surprise yourself and the people around you and make them wonder if you are truly looking for children.
The society expects you to act a certain way when trying to conceive. Being moody and looking down casted are part of how you are expected to look, but instead, do the opposite. Be happy and joyful. For it is through this joy that you will draw water from the well of salvation (The Holy Bible, Isaiah 12:3). I have been living this way for the past ten years, knowing that I have only one life to live, with or without children.
To be continued!
Keep dazzling even as you raise your children, wait on your own children, adopt children, or remain without children.
(Maya is not her real name for the sake of anonymity)