It was NEVER my fault!
Today while talking to a friend, they made the comment that it was no wonder why it took me so long to get pregnant — because I had so much fear and anxiety.
Wait … what? Did those words really come out of their mouth? I felt rage and hurt all at the same time.
I have a message to share with anyone who is affected by infertility — infertility was not my fault.
Let me break down the “fear and anxiety” that was true at the time — 10 years ago. Sometimes I feel like it was just yesterday.
The ONLY fear I had was that the love that I wanted to share with a child was not going to become a reality for me.
The only fear that I had was that the surgery, herbs, teas, tinctures, massages, acupuncture, mediations, yoga, diet, exercise, shots, pills and procedures would not work. That my heart was swelling with the desire to care for another human being — to make my marriage into a family and me into a mother.
My greatest anxiety was that I would get pregnant and miscarry because I was given a 50 percent chance due to my fibroids.
Never did I imagine that someone that I love and care about would make that kind of comment. Never did they imagine in that moment, their words would hurt me so much.
When someone has never experienced trouble getting pregnant, endless doctor appointments, surgeries and then the sheer joy of carrying a baby to term, they don’t know how the journey stays with us. I never imagined I was going to be this success story — three children and no miscarriages.
I used to hear that and think I will never be “that person” who wins big in the end.
I am glad I was wrong about that.
You see, the fears and worries that I experienced had no affect on my journey to get pregnant and carry my baby to term. If fear and stress had a direct connection to difficulty getting pregnant, women in third world countries, victims of abuse, or women struggling to make ends meet in unhealthy relationships wouldn’t be getting pregnant — but they are.
Sure, stress can affect our mind and body and is related to various health issues, but when someone gets breast cancer I doubt people say, “it must be all that stress you are under.” No, because that would seem ridiculous.
Then why was a woman who struggles to conceive somehow fair game for someone to give their unsolicited thoughts and advice?
So, today I share this story so that women going through their fertility journey know they are not alone. Nobody knows your story like you. Years from now it may astound you too as to how the memory of this time of your life can hurt so very much, but no matter what your story is and how it unfolds, please just know:
Infertility is NOT your fault.
Dr. Sheryl Ziegler is a licensed therapist specializing in anxiety and family issues. If you are experiencing anxiety while trying to start a family, contact Dr. Sheryl Ziegler for support and counseling.