Big Scary IVF – The Decision

Vaginal Exam, Follicle Stimulation, Infertility, IVF, Secondary Infertility, in vitro fertilization

IVF is scary. Not only do you have to deal with the reality that your infertility is so bad it requires IVF treatment, but you also have to deal with the reality that it may not work. You dump thousands of dollars and emotions into pursuing a dream that may never come true. Yet, you know it may never come true unless you do the treatment. It’s a hard place to be and a difficult choice to make, but we finally decided to do it. We chose Big Scary IVF.

One of our biggest obstacles deciding on IVF was dealing with our own emotions. I felt extremely apprehensive about doing a hormone inflating procedure that required administering shots. It didn’t help that we knew very little about the process in the beginning, and learning about all of the steps was overwhelming. Plus, I felt so frustrated with my own body. I knew I was capable of having a baby, so why couldn’t I do it a second time? After sitting with the reproductive endocrinologist (RE) to discuss all of the ins and outs of IVF, the shots, the blood draws, the odds – I felt depressed. IVF reinforced the idea that I am infertile. I realize that I am not less of a woman by having infertility, but I couldn’t shake the stigma. What was wrong with me? Why couldn’t I get pregnant like a normal person?

Pregnancy Test, Big Fat Negative, Follicle Stimulation, Infertility, IVF, Secondary Infertility, in vitro fertilization, insemmination, IUI, shame
Just after receiving our 14th big fat negative after a failed IUI attempt.

IVF is also what I would consider our last resort. There are more expensive treatments out there like using donor eggs, surrogacy, adoption, etc., but given our financial and emotional situation – this is our last stop. Barring winning the lotto, we simply can’t afford to do IVF multiple times nor pursue other avenues of fertility treatment. We chose to do IVF with preimplantation genetic screening (PGS) that ultimately cost over $20k. I was shocked and stunned when we learned just how much we had to pay for our fertility treatment. Although, I now understand why people take out second mortgages on their homes or even move to other countries for cheaper fertility treatment in pursuit of their baby dreams. In the long run, I believe the cost of IVF will be worth it. However in the short run, I gasp and choke at how much we have to spend.

IVF Paperwork, Infertility, IVF, Secondary Infertility, in vitro fertilization
Signing the many pages of paperwork with our IVF nurse at the fertility clinic.

Besides the cost and my own emotional tug-o-wars, I was wrecked with the issue of timing. Were we jumping into IVF too soon and just feeding a $4 billion dollar industry? Should we have done one more round of insemination since it is relatively easy and cheap in comparison? Should we have been more patient?  I don’t know. I question our decision to pursue IVF on a weekly basis and hope that it all works out. If it doesn’t . . I don’t even want to think what it’ll be like if it doesn’t work out. Please just work out.

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