Strangely enough, the baby commotion over the weekend was a good distraction from our failed cycle. Who would have predicted that? But now that the party has died down we’re back to reality and back to facing our failed cycle and all of the emotions that go along with it.
Empty Crib from Eyefetch.com
I feel like I’ve written until my fingers are numb about the emotional impact failed cycles have had on me – I’d link you to some posts here but there are so many – if you are curious you can click on Baby Envy in the categories to the right to see more posts than you’d ever want to read on the subject. So instead of writing the same post on a different day, I thought I’d present a wider perspective and tell you how failed cycles and infertility affects women/couples across the board. It sometimes helps me to see these statistics because it reminds me that my pain is valid when much of society is not set up to treat people experiencing infertility with the compassion they need. (You guys are all awesome and very compassionate- but to see what I mean, just find any online news story about infertility and read the comments. You’ll probably give up hope for the entire human race after a few minutes of reading those gems.)
- 13% of women had suicidal ideation following a failed IVF attempt in a study by Baram, Touretelot, Muechler, and Huang.
- “It’s like a death. Procreation is one of the strongest instincts in the animal kingdom.” –Dr. Alice Domar Ph.D
- Women failing to conceive often have clinical depression rates similar to women who have HIV or cancer, according to Andrea Mechanick Braverman, PhD
- A study from Uppsala University in Sweeden found that three years after the end of IVF treatment, most men and women were still processing and had not adapted to childlessness, indicating that the grieving process was still unresolved.
- Emerging from fertility treatment babyless, broke and in need of professional support to get back on the rails is a common experience, according to the British Infertility Counselling Association.
- After a failed IVF cycle, women experienced a further lowering of self-esteem and an increase in depression relative to pre-treatment levels, according to the MGH Center for Women’s Mental Health.
- Dr. Lisa Tuttle encounters many women who say they can’t stop thinking about it, that it haunts them even while they’re sleeping.
- 71% of women experiencing infertility feel that they are flawed, according to a study by GfK Roper.
So please – the next time you are buying a gift or attending a shower or making a meal to support a happy, healthy, pregnant/new parent friend or family member- think about these statistics and try to also send out a little love and support to someone you know who is facing infertility’s depression, self doubt, and grief rather than the anticipation and joy of a new baby.
I have appreciated the support I’ve gotten during this time more than I can even articulate.