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National Infertility Awareness Week

This week has been dubbed National Infertility Awareness Week, but I’m plenty aware of what infertility is.

Infertility was the hardest battle my husband and I ever fought.

And yet, even though 1 in every 8 women struggles with infertility, it’s almost a taboo subject.

I often found myself feeling very alone during my struggle with infertility, even though with the odds being 1 in 8, I most definitely wasn’t.

As a matter of fact, the more I talked about it, the more I found out that I had friends that had been exactly where I was.

Everyone had their own story to tell.  PCOS, miscarriage, chemical pregnancy, Advanced Maternal Age, secondary infertility.  Another friend also was struggling with a prolactin imbalance, the same diagnosis I was struggling with.

So if I had so many friends who had struggled or were struggling with infertility, why had I never heard their stories before?

The answer is simple.  Because for some reason, there is a stigma associated with discussing infertility.  No one had a problem asking when my husband and I were going to “expand our family”, but the moment I tried to tell them why, I’d get cut off with a “It will happen when it happens!”   Then they would hastily change the subject.

It’s almost as though people are afraid that by talking about infertility, they too will be impacted by it.

But the truth is that if we want to change the way infertility is looked at, we need to start talking and listening.

My infertility story had a happy ending.  After nine months of treatment, we found out we were expecting our son.

But a lot of wannabe mothers and fathers are still fighting for their happy ending.

And others have chosen to find a different happy ending, be it through surrogacy, adoption or choosing to live childless.

So this week, Hampton Roads Moms challenges you to reach out to that friend or relative going through infertility and just let them know you’re there if they need to talk or just have a shoulder to cry on.  Let them know that even though they might feel alone, they aren’t.

Have you struggled with infertility?  Share your story with us at hrvamoms@gmail.com

And check out Resolve: The National Infertility Awareness Association for more information on infertility.

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