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An IVF Forgetter
Why I can't enjoy being pregnant

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#1 prue~c

Posted 28 November 2010 - 11:30 AM

I don't like being pregnant.

There, I said it. Despite spending four years wanting nothing more than to be pregnant, the reality is not what I was expecting. I thought I would be gorgeous and glowing, rocking the latest in maternity fashion, tenderly caressing my bump while sporting long and lush pregnancy hair. But in truth, I am uncomfortable, constantly sick, so tired that I sleep all weekend, and have had a headache for 16 weeks. And pregnancy hair? It's on my upper lip, not on my head.

But cursed is the pregnant IVFer who dare speak a single negative word about her 'condition' once she gets that magic Big Fat Positive. Branded an “IVF Forgetter”, she is considered a traitor to those who are yet to conceive or have made the decision to live childfree, but not by choice. I know, because I used to hate on any pregnant woman who complained about morning sickness. I was so ready for it and couldn't wait to experience the heaving and upchucking, secure in the knowledge that it was all for a good cause.

But in real life, there is nothing even slightly comforting about vomiting ten times before 7am, then passing out. Being admitted to hospital for rehydration and living on a cocktail of anti-emetic pills is not fun. And the needles didn't stop with IVF either, with my husband now an expert at administering Stemetil deep into the muscle of my backside. Not that it helps. And the headaches. I have been unlucky enough to suffer from migraines since my early 20s, and pregnancy exacerbates them. My headaches have been so bad, that I temporarily lost the sight in my left eye, but there's no popping of an Imigrain or other prescription migraine meds. Codeine helps a bit, but it's only temporary.

A comment left on my previous blog post prompted me to write this entry.

“I think one moment spent NOT enjoying it, NOT revelling in it, NOT drinking in being pregnant with not one BUT two babies, well it would be wasted and a bit of a slap in the face to those of us who read you who for whatever reason, can't get pregnant OR can't stay pregnant in my case.”

Thegalwho, I would LOVE to be able to enjoy this. I have wanted it for so long and I envy those women who have happy, trouble free pregnancies, but please don't take my lack of enthusiasm over my pregnancy personally. I'm not being pathetic, and I'm not forgetting for a second the pain and longing during the journey to get here, but sometime between the seventh and tenth vomit of the morning, I have, to my shame and absolute horror, wondered if it was all going to be worth it. Physically, IVF was a walk in the park compared to this. Even being admitted to hospital in agonising pain after complications with an egg retrieval is preferable to going in with hyperemesis. This will be my only pregnancy, and I am angry that I haven't been able to enjoy it. The Gods could at least smile on the sub-fertile after having such a struggle to get here in the first place.

Everyone tells me that it will get better, and I bloody well hope so, but for now, I keep focussed on the prize at the end. It can't come soon enough.

#2 GoBack2Bed

Posted 28 November 2010 - 11:39 AM

Oh for pete's sake. This is what I HATED the most about being pregnant! The fact that - oh gosh - you don't enjoy EVERY WAKING MOMENT of it is apparently an insult to every other woman in the world. What hogwash.

I had severe morning sickness, got ENORMOUS, got GD, worked full time including loads of travel in hot crappy hotel rooms. So YES I complained sometimes. But so what!

My sister is a long time IVF and still no success so I understand just how hard it is to watch someone go through pregnancy when TTC but come on.

At no point is someone saying "I wish I wasn't pregnant" they are merely saying "Gee I wish I had some more room in me to breath properly without getting kicked in the ribs" or "Gee I'm actually tired of checking blood sugars and injecting insulin"

Give these women a break. Enjoy your pregnancy, and complain your little heart away if you feel you need to. I literally had TWO people I could complain to when I really needed to  - My DH and my younger sister (who was also pregnant).

Also some people HATE pregnancy. So what! Guess what - some people HATE babies until they are 6 months old as that baby stage is really hard for some people!

We all need to stop JUDGING each other.

Congratulations on your pregnancy - and feel free to whinge, complain and lament the pregnancy as much as you want!

#3 codex

Posted 28 November 2010 - 11:55 AM

It just doesn't seem fair, Prue, I'm so sorry you are still getting knocked around so badly.

#4 anzacgirl

Posted 28 November 2010 - 11:56 AM

Ok, so this is when you need some kind of sloganned tshirt that emblazons for the world to see that you are now in that other-world state - a PREGNANT (infertile) person - albeit with really hideous related illnesses sad.gif Just to cover all women in the waiting room.

It matters not to the world how you concieved these babies, you have jumped ship to fertile land, one hand reaching back longingly to where you last felt safe ( even in desperation, the whole IVF thing has some kind of safety within the procedures, contempuous familiarity!) and your bleary red rimmed eyes strain forward to try and see the silver lining ( oooh twins!!! double trouble!!! ) amongst the vomit inducing clouds.

I totally understand you. You have NOT forgotten the angst of staring down the barrel of a child-free but not by choice life, you have just added in some elements that now require more of your attention, eg babies in your belly and ensuing stuff.

You are not a traitor. You are still infertile, but now you are pregnant. Having a terrible time within that pregnancy and blogging about it is neither ungrateful or forgetful. It just is what it is.

I am an IVF-er on the 'other side' and my two little frostie babies ( fets ) are the absolute joy and bane of my life in equal measures some days. In no way does me commenting on their bad behaviour in supermarkets diminish the 5 stims and 7 fets ( and two miscarriages ) and the $45000 visa debt more than scrapbooking how adorable they are, does it????

Keep us well ( honestly! ) informed of your progress Pru, and I truly hope there is some ease to all the yukky pg bits. ( Hopefully before those pesky babies emerge anyway )


#5 Laluna

Posted 28 November 2010 - 12:22 PM

I would say that once you get that BFP you're pregnant just as anyone else who is pregnant and have the same right to feel like carp if your health lets you down. I don't think that you have any extra obligation to suck it up more, just because it was harder for you to get there.
I hope it does get easier for you... SOON!

#6 thegalwho

Posted 28 November 2010 - 05:23 PM

My comment was a mere suggestion that Prue try to look on the positive side of her pregnancy, to try to enjoy it as much as she can. I at no point,  suggested that she not complain, whinge, whine or b**ch but apparently  because I suggested that she try to enjoy it as much as she can it must  mean that I also meant she can't do the opposite?

I  think some people on this thread will be looking to be offended, when  really there was/is nothing to be offended about. If you have time in your  life to be offended by a suggestion to try and look for some positives  out of your situation - well lets just say I wish I had your life!

Edited by thegalwho, 05 December 2010 - 06:08 PM.

#7 BeYOUtiful

Posted 28 November 2010 - 05:34 PM

Yeah, I'm with thegalwho on this one.

My pg was not easy I was sick all day until 18wks but I found it reasurring after never seeing a heartbeat before.
I loved every minute regardless of headaches, sickness, car accident, hospital Boxing Day, PE.
One of the most treasured times of my life and always will be.

Edited by ~Jane05~, 28 November 2010 - 09:32 PM.

#8 TheGreenSheep

Posted 28 November 2010 - 06:13 PM

Hey Prue, I have read and enjoyed your journey through infertility and now to pregnancy. A big congratulations times 2!

I understand the years of emotional, physical and financial investment in getting PG and staying PG. I still remember the feeling and trepidation of getting past 12wks and just wanting to be considered a normal healthy PG like all those other lucky women. And in my mind it was a chance to feel something normal and enjoy it!

However there certainly were aspects I didnt enjoy, of which many of us share, and when I managed to get PG again it was all the same struggles as the first time.

These feelings flow on into child rearing and that ultimate goal of motherhood. And I tell you these children are the best damn thing DH and I ever did, but oh man are there ever days....! I believe its the best job in the world, but its the hardest thing Ive ever done as well.

I hope the awful and horrible hyperemesis takes the migraines and goes far far away so that you will glow like the fairytale tells you that PG mums do. FWIW I never glowed, I grew hair in the wrong places, I was pimply and rashy, I was more tired than I ever could sleep away and oh my lordy that heartburn acid burnt my voicebox so I talked like a man.

I look forward to reading how the final few weeks fly by and youll have those two babies in your arms and your body back to yourself.

#9 ozbilby

Posted 28 November 2010 - 06:27 PM

I do understand where you are comming from Prue as I also had a terrible pregnancy. I think the worst part though was related to loss of innocence through IVF. I could not sit back and enjoy pregnancy because I had lost and suffered so much already. It was so hard for me to get pregnant and stay pregnant that instead of joy all I felt was constant anxiety. The pressure to be constantly gratefull for my BFP just made the anxiety worse.

I can assure however that it is was all worth it and to have DD I would do it all again.

#10 ~Panda~

Posted 28 November 2010 - 06:33 PM

Congratulations, Prue! How far along are you if you don't mind me asking. Or is it a surprise?  original.gif

I'd have to say I agree with Jane05 and thegalwho.

I have experienced morning sickness, put in hospital for 3 weeks, flown by air ambulance, 5 hours of severe contractions, constipation, hooked up to a IV bag for 4 weeks straight, so sick I could not eat yet I had no baby to take home. I have lost 6 babies so far. I would happily relive my horrible pregnancy symptoms and enjoy it knowing that things were looking good. When I used to vomit or not want to eat I would get excited, thinking my pregnancy was progressing nicely. Only to show up to an u/s and find my babies had died. I am not trying to have a 'I've had it harder' competition. No way. I am just explaining why sickness, yucky pregnancy symptoms etc would not be an issue for me to put up with as I feel I've been on both sides, I have just never ended up in the 'safe' zone in my pregnancies. Something I hope I get one day!

I suppose different experiences make us feel different things. I also think I'd prefer to be sick and pregnanct than going through the emotions of IVF. In my opinion, IVF is much more difficult.

I wish you all the best, Prue. You've had a hard road and I am happy that things have worked out for you!

#11 louise3now4

Posted 28 November 2010 - 06:39 PM

What a lot of crap this is. I am sorry you are having to hear this nasty jealousy Prue. And congratulations on your pregnancy and my condolences on the time you are having of it. Death (your own) is often an attractive proposition when you are this sick.
As someone who won't even pretend to know what infertility is, but who can talk the talk and walk the walk when it comes to HG, I think it is cruel and pathetic of any woman to consider another who is suffering from HG as unappreciative enough *of just being pregnant*.
Hyperemesis has killed women since the beginning of time in our part of the world and still does in developing nations. Show me one woman whose health was placed at risk or who died from not being able to conceive. rolleyes.gif

#12 thegalwho

Posted 28 November 2010 - 06:49 PM


Edited by thegalwho, 05 December 2010 - 06:20 PM.

#13 TenYears

Posted 28 November 2010 - 06:49 PM

I think it's good that you can talk about the less than rosy reality of some pregnancies Prue.  I think it would be difficult to have to pretend that it is not hard having pregnancy complications because it was also hard getting pregnant.

A pregnant woman, regardless how she got that way, is more than just a vessel for an unborn baby.  Her feelings and responses are still for the most part what they would have been pre-pregnancy.  There are some woman who would feel nothing but rapturous joy as their face hovers over the toilet seat that a co-workers buttocks just caressed, but for most of us that remains a fairly unpleasant experience regardless of gravidity.  

Hyperemesis is very unpleasant.  It's also a relatively uncommon complication of pregnancy.  People who get it are unlucky.  People who get it complain.  It seems an additional unfairness - one final indignity of infertility, that people who have already walked a difficult path to become pregnant should stoically put up with what everyone else is 'allowed' by society to admit to disliking.

Edited by sassm, 28 November 2010 - 06:51 PM.

#14 brazen

Posted 28 November 2010 - 06:50 PM

the minutes i spent enjoying being pregnant were few and far between. i envy those who glow and love every minute, but i had an awful time through most of it.
when you've waited for so long* it's only to be expected that you've built it up into something it isn't (for everyone at least wink.gif) and you've probably bargained with some greater power ("i promise i won't complain about anything...etc etc") but it will just send you crazy trying to pretend you're happy when you're not. let it go and just concentrate on getting through it.

hope you do get a few enjoyable moments soon original.gif

* i didn't go through years of trying myself but have seen many other friends who have

Edited by brazen, 28 November 2010 - 06:51 PM.

#15 louise3now4

Posted 28 November 2010 - 06:55 PM

QUOTE (thegalwho @ 28/11/2010, 07:49 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
My suggestion lousie? Don't begin to even slightly judge what you really have NO idea about.

Despite your delightful play on the spelling of my name, the fact still remains, *I* was not the one judging. I was defending the judged.

QUOTE (sassm @ 28/11/2010, 07:49 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hyperemesis is very unpleasant.  It's also a relatively uncommon complication of pregnancy.  People who get it are unlucky.  People who get it complain.  It seems an additional unfairness - one final indignity of infertility, that people who have already walked a difficult path to become pregnant should stoically put up with what everyone else is 'allowed' by society to admit to disliking.

Beautifully put sassm.

#16 twistedmama

Posted 28 November 2010 - 06:57 PM

I don't do pregnancy well.  At all.  I get HG, GD, PIH, PE, strangulated roids etc etc and I HATE being pregnant.  I've had 2 miscarriages and felt so guilty when I didn't love being pregnant, but how can you love what is causing so much sickness?  That's not to say I ever didn't love my baby while pregnant and guess what I LOVE GIVING BIRTH!!!  I know there are women who really dislike labour and birth, but I've never heard people describe those women as ungrateful, have you?

I'm sorry you're so sick and hope it eases up for you very soon bbighug.gif

ps I won't be trying for anymore babies either, as I can't look after myself properly when pregnant and so ill, let alone lil people sad.gif

#17 thegalwho

Posted 28 November 2010 - 07:12 PM


Edited by thegalwho, 05 December 2010 - 06:20 PM.

#18 twistedmama

Posted 28 November 2010 - 07:18 PM

QUOTE (thegalwho @ 28/11/2010, 07:12 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I at no point judged her....

I also don't believe I ever called her ungrateful....

What I DID do, was say that I think not reveling in every moment she IS pregnant would be a waste because she may never be pregnant again...

And in Prues own words..., so it's ok for her to admit to that because she's now knocked up but not for others to admit it and put it into typed words?

I'm not denying her happiness, nor congratulations on being pregnant but when she's blogging in a public space - she needs to be prepared for the fact that her words MAY upset or offend others and like she has a right to type her fears, complaints, happiness, others are too.

Look I don't expect anyone else to really understand where I'm coming from, few do and in all honesty that's something to be blessed about, I wouldn't wish what I've gone through on my worst enemy - it leaves your heart raw and your emotions very fragile.

I wasn't referring to you in particular.  I really wish you nothing but love and happiness original.gif

#19 ~Panda~

Posted 28 November 2010 - 07:26 PM

Louise, were you referring to me with your first post? Because I was not acting out from jealously, just sharing an experience as everyone else has!  huh.gif Just explaining why it would be different for me.  BTW, m/c has killed women also.

#20 thegalwho

Posted 28 November 2010 - 07:27 PM


Edited by thegalwho, 05 December 2010 - 06:19 PM.

#21 twistedmama

Posted 28 November 2010 - 07:33 PM

QUOTE (thegalwho @ 28/11/2010, 07:27 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I'm sorry twistedmama, I wasn't having a go at you.

The fact remains that this is a conception forum, with conception, comes difficulties, with difficulties comes sadness, hormones and possibly high emotional feelings. These are the hallmarks of a conception OR ttc forum. I've been on alot of conception/ttc forums and this is the only one where I've seen members attacking other members just for stating what they're feeling.

What has transpired here is why mods/bloggers who DO manage to conceive are encouraged and in most cases made to move onto pregnancy boards.

It's ok, I just wanted you to know that I wasn't singling you out.

#22 LittleRB

Posted 28 November 2010 - 07:37 PM

Oh Prue you poor thing. HG is the most awful way to spend a pregnancy - especially after IVF and years TTC.

The most frustrating part is when you tell people you have HG and they are like "oh yeah, I had morning sickness too".... um - no - it's NOTHING like that - it's a CONSTANT urge to vomit. It is severe physical exhaustion and dehydration (not to mention the emotional and mental side effects). It is spending every other day/week/month at the hospital hooked up to an IV to get fluids into you because you've lost more than 10% of your body weight (and no - I was NOT HAPPY to lose 9 kilo's in 6 weeks so please don' t tell me how grateful I should be that I look so slim). It's taking every anti-vomiting medication under the sun, including meds given to CANCER patients after chemo (ondansetron) and having your body respond for 24 hours (if that) and then reject the drug (and for the record, stemetil is not only prescribed to be taken in the backside via needle... you are lucky with that one Prue!). It's everyone telling you that you willl stop vomiting after the 1st trimester but then week 13, 14, 15 and 16 pass and you are still vomiting. It's knowing what foods to eat and avoiding certain foods because you know they taste awful when they're coming back up.

Hang in there Prue, I vomited every single day til I gave birth, and never quite relaxed during my pregnancy and I couldn't care less what anyone said or thought about it. It doesn't mean I wasn't grateful for being pregnant OR that I'm not allowed to whinge about it.

I can understand why you feel the way you do, because I completely relate. It's hard when something you wanted so much, for so long, no matter what and no matter how, causes you to feel such physical or mental of emotional pain. The haters will always be out there and it's part of the package because hey, you and I used to be one of them before falling pg. Just wait til the babies are born and they drive you even more bonkers then and you wonder what you asked for... and NO it does not mean you don't love your babies it just means being pregnant and giving birth and having a baby can be hard - not that you've forgotten the pain of infertility.

Good luck and I hope things improve for you and sorry for the super long post (and FWIW I've read that HG calms down closer to the end of the second trimester than the first which was true for me).

#23 Guest_ladybaba_*

Posted 28 November 2010 - 07:38 PM

Prue, I'm sorry to hear you're having a tough time. It would be nice to think that, having suffered to fall pregnant, one would get an easy pass for pregnancy, but I guess it doesn't work that way. Hopefully as the pregnancy progresses things will get easier for you.  You have fought so hard to get here, not too far from now it will all be over and you will have two precious children to love for the rest of your life, and I'm sure they will be worth your struggles and courage.

On a side note, I am still curious if someone else will be replacing your blog for us infertiles who remain.

QUOTE (louise3now4 @ 28/11/2010, 07:39 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hyperemesis has killed women since the beginning of time in our part of the world and still does in developing nations. Show me one woman whose health was placed at risk or who died from not being able to conceive. rolleyes.gif

Women have died from severe OHSS (and no doubt other complications of IVF, infertility treatment and complications of conditions that cause infertility). I have experienced severe OHSS and I can tell you I would have happily died rather than continued in that kind of pain. It took me six months to recover physically - two trimesters - and I didn't get a child out of it. Emotionally I'm still traumatised a year later.

I'm sorry, but as someone who has never experienced infertility I don't know why you're commenting on a blog about infertility and calling people out for being "jealous". Uncalled for really, when they're just putting forward their own opinions in a public forum (nicely and diplomatically I thought, especially given this is an infertility blog). You have no idea what women/couples go through to try for years, experience IVF, lose children that took so much work, pain and money to conceive, have relationships and lives fall apart, lose you bl**dy mind, lose your house, lose your hope. Very, very unfair judgement from someone who has no idea and never, ever will.

#24 Guest_~Sally_*

Posted 28 November 2010 - 07:38 PM

A good, honest post as usual Prue.  

In what kind of mixed up world is it ok for a woman who is seriously ill to be made to feel as if she'll be damned for all eternity for not being thankful every waking minute that she's throwing up?

For goodness sake, some of you need to get over yourselves.  Not everything is about you.

Pregnancy can be horrid.  It's perfectly ok to not be happy about being so ill.  The prize at the end IS worth it though.  You'll love it.

#25 Al.Packer

Posted 28 November 2010 - 07:56 PM

Congratulations Prue.

I have never experienced infertility, and I'm grateful for that. But as a 3x sufferer of Hyperemesis, my sympathies are with you. It's hell on earth. I've spent many a day wondering if it is all worth it, and alternating wishing for my death, or that of the foetus I am carrying. I'm not ashamed to admit that. It's a very ugly truth, but that is what Hyperemesis can do to you.

I'm really sorry that this thread has degenerated into that delightful forum game of listing every hardship a poster has ever had, and how they coped marvellously, and you are clearly somehow a lesser being than them for not being exactly the same. Good on them. But they are not you, and they are not living your life.

Best wishes for the rest of your pregnancy.

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