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When to Stop Trying?

April 6, 2008

Ok.. so I am finally getting down to this even though I should have done it weeks ago.   Chapter 10 of Unsung Lullabies is about deciding what it means to stop trying and how to determine when you and your significant other are ready for a break or to stop completely.

The first section is such a simple concept but can be so difficult: You made the choice to start, You make the choice to stop.  For myself and the Hubbs, we decided that how far we go would completely depend on the status of our financial situation first and foremost.  It’s hard to say that right at the beginning and the financial aspect becomes less important the more desperate we become. In that aspect, I am very glad we set our boundaries before we were in the middle of a situation.  When it came down to it, we didn’t have any money to do any kind of ARTs, but we know whats wrong.  It kind of made me (at the time) say to just fix it–or work around the issue–but we didn’t have the money.  When we moved, I don’t even trust the doctors so whats one to do?  When you have the means, you find a doctor you do trust.  I could go on and on about it as it has been kind of a sore spot as of late with me.  As spring rolls in and I see all those people from the end of our trying beginning to have their children, of seeing them grow and such- I have a spark of bitterness in my heart.  If only…

If only we could even affort to try beyond what we have done already– maybe that could be us. Maybe 2008 would have marked the year of success and new beginnings rather then the fourth year of failure.

Then I think “Maybe not– maybe we’d just be broke and childless”.

The authors mention the choice to stop being clear cut or not–and for me it was a very definite  “I need to stop this.  I can’t handle anymore”.

And for the Hubbs it was more of a slow stop. In his mind, three years was that line and he would not give up the hope until that line was crossed. So for my October 07 cycle I could feel the hope coming from him. It was almost tangible.  It hurt my heart because even that cycle I remember being so nonchalant but he was very much aware of where I was in my cycle..it was his last chance. I could see it and yet again we failed.  Since that cycle he’s not said much of anything about babies or children.  Until last week.  But we’ll get to that in a different post.

The authors also address the religious/spiritual aspect of infertility- the anger at God, guilt for that anger.  This aspect of infertility has really been a burden on my heart– so much so that I am beginning to want to try and change that.  I’ve begun a blog specifically for the spiritual aspects of my personal journey–that I will link here when it is relevant.

The rest of the chapter talks about letting go of treatment when you feel like you cannot handle anymore. Do not push yourself into yet another treatment because it is new, or a new protocol because it worked for someone else.  The “keeping up with the Jones’) mentality can hurt us more than help.  And in some cases, treatment is used almost as a shield against facing the pain of disappointment, the death of a dream.  I have seen that on some of the boards I used to frequent but don’t anymore.  I remember those ladies who would post in anger about their spouses saying that it was time to move on.  How could he not understand that this might be the thing that works?  What if down the road we wonder if we had tried one more time?

That is certainly when I feel that a sit down and heart-to-heart about the why’s need to be considered.  Its important to remain a team during these times because I’ve seen the dream of a child kill the couple.  It didn’t end up that way with me and the Hubbs but our relationship has definately been strongly impacted by infertility.  We have been working on that over the last six months and while we aren’t where I feel we used to be- I think we are getting closer to that.  I value the effort that he’s put into making me feel like it is ok if it is just us.  I am enough for him.  I have tried to do the same for him as he faces what issues he has with how the story has gone for us thus far.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. April 6, 2008 12:28 pm

    Deciding when to stop is, I think, one of the most difficult parts of ttc. It sounds like you and your DH are comfortable most of the time with your decision and that your marriage is growing stronger as a result. I’ve enjoyed reading your reflections on Unsung Lullabies. Thank you!

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