For a long time, I didn’t want to admit that I was experiencing secondary infertility. It just didn’t seem accurate. After all, I had “struggled” to conceive my first son and ended up taking fertility medication. I did not get pregnant without intervention, and never have, so I considered myself to have primary infertility.
Secondary infertility felt like a stigma. It encouraged others to judge me because I already had a child. It allowed others to view my situation as “not a big deal.” And frankly, it forced me to play the victim card a lot less than others.
I was hurting. In fact, I was dying inside. And I kept trying to justify my pain to not only myself, but others who might be quick to point out that I didn’t have a case because let’s consider all of those other people who can’t even have one child, those who need to use donor egg, and those who move on to adoption.
But why was I having such a difficult time?
There are a number of reasons why I personally might have had a harder time than the next person dealing with secondary infertility, but what I realize now is that my pain was valid.
This is why I’m taking a stand for those who are stuck in the throes of this awful journey.
We knew way before we tried to have children that we wanted a family of at least four. I’m willing to bet that many others felt the same. When this desire was threatened, it was devastating. And anyone who told us, and continues to tell others that we’re selfish, or ungrateful, or that we should be ashamed of ourselves just isn’t someone capable of true empathy.
We need to own secondary infertility.
We need to talk about it.
We need to end the stigma and shame.
Our desires are just as valid. It’s as simple as that.
Anyone who doesn’t support that, or doesn’t understand, has some work to do. Anyone who has anything negative to say about it is simply judging.
As the saying goes, “Until you’ve walked a mile in someone else’s shoes…”