Monday, September 24

Diabetes? Fine. Infertility? Nope.

I am pretty open about many things in my life.  People who know me well know that when they ask me an honest question, they can expect a reciprocating answer.  In this fashion, I might be a bit too trusting.  There are things that I get asked about the most often, the front-runner being my diabetes.  Diabetes is something I harbor absolutely no bad feelings about.  I sometimes feel discouraged, frustrated, or downright ornery about the subject, namely on days that have seen rollercoasting highs and lows when it comes to my blood sugar, but for the most part if someone has questions, they can feel free to ask away.  I even answer the seemingly endless barrage of stupid/ignorant questions about my diabetes.

Then there's that other topic once people find out that we have been married for as long as we have and they learn that Hallie is adopted.  The elephant in the room when such questions arise or such information is learned: INFERTILITY...

I don't know why this topic is so taboo for me.  Accepting it? Easy.  Facing it with medical help/intervention?  Haven't quite gone there yet.  Discussing it with members of my family who struggle with it?  No problem.  Discussing the sometimes personal and searching questions from people I hardly know or don't quite know well enough?  YIKES.  

I can't quite explain that feeling of me putting up a nearly tangible but invisible barrier/wall around me when someone expresses curiosity as to why we only have one child. You would think that having married into a culture where blunt and searching questions abound, that I would be able to be more open about this...topic.  

Not only are there the questions surrounding how Hallie came into our family, then there are the questions about how do we plan on having/getting more kids, or questions as to when we plan on it etc.  I can't quite put a label to all the different types of questions that result from one BIG question, but I just don't always feel ready to talk about it, or I get sick of giving the same answers over and over and over again.  

I have friends that are pretty open about the fact that infertility is a challenge they and their significant others face in their lives. I support them in that.  Even when they are a bit TMI in my opinion.  

So there you go, I have put this out there.  Do any of my 3 readers (maybe I'm being presumptuous) or so struggle with anything like this?  


Kurt & Rachel Keyser said...

Logan was born shortly after our 5th anniversary...I was always so annoyed that people assumed that we were just putting things off because we owned our house, both of us were working, etc.

When, if, or how you have kids is up to you and the Lord!

Lyndie said...

Here's my two cents...Long story short we discovered some problems shortly after we were married and were encouraged to "try" soon if we wanted kids at all. We were quite aggressive and hopped onto fertility drugs. Eventually we got pregnant (without any help) and had three kids right in a row (closer than I would have planned in fact). It was hard to answer questions at the time mostly because I felt guilty that it was my fault (knowing I shouldn't but couldn't help it) and was terrified at the possibility of not having kids. Now people see our three girls and would never know it was once such weight on me. I don't think about it much anymore, in fact it even seems a little surreal that we had that experience.
I don't think I'm offering any insights but hopefully a little validation? It's very personal and was very sensitive to me. So even though I'm an open person, I agree that fertility is one topic I didn't want to discuss.
The ironic part is that when were were married, we wanted to wait a few years before kids came along. But then after our initial scare, we started trying much sooner than planned. However, our first baby wasn't born until our original plan called for. so when asked if we waited that long on purpose, it's hard to answer because we didn't, but at one time we would have.
These are questions that casual friends or strangers shouldn't ask and I learned to answer them flippantly, hoping to show them how stupid their question was like, "oh well the stork lost our address" or "yeah usually amazon is so reliable, weird that our order hasn't shown up yet". I agree; when, if and how many kids are private decisions. It may be something you volunteer to discuss with family or close friends but it's inappropriate for anyone to ask.

James and Lauren said...

Everyone deals differently. However you deal is your right and its ok. Ita a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad thing to deal with. I'm very open because I got tired of being mad at people all the time for saying stupid things. One benefit to having people know is that they are generally more sensitive. But then everyone knows your business which can be annoying. Good luck sweetie! I'm here if you need anything.

MH5 said...

You know, I once said something to Lauren (back when I was young, naive) about fertility/infertility that was super insensitive and very ignorant of me. The comment still irks me to this day and this was like 9 years ago. (I'm really sorry Lauren!)
...I think that a lot of people are ignorant about the subject. You and Lauren are very courageous and strong women for being even semi-open to talking with people about this; and it helps dummies like me become more educated and sensitive to everyone around us.