It’s been a while since I posted a Memo to the Fertile Community. I want to choose my topics carefully since I know their patience on this topic is severely limited. They’d just as soon write infertility off as a phase that a handful of “selfish” career-driven people go through, that it’s self-inflicted or assume that a trip to the local adoption agency will instantly produce a child. End of story. The truth is they want to believe that it’s an easily remedified concern. I invite readers to offer their own addendums.
TO: FERTILE COMMUNITY
RE: HOW CAN WE GET OVER IT WHEN REMINDERS LAST A LIFETIME?
Why on earth do I keep talking about infertility you want to know. It’s been more than a few years since it became clear that nothing short of a miracle was going to help us produce offspring. I should be “over it” by now you grumble. What’s the point, you say when you’re with your fellow fertiles, in people like me dredging up a subject that makes us all squirm.
Well, I’d like to stop thinking, talking and writing about it, truly I would. It’s just that until you’ve demonstrated that you fully appreciate the magnitude of this life-altering condition I’m not going to rest. You see, it’s become a personal quest. I feel a kinship with every couple who has faced the awful realization that their bodies have betrayed them, that what is so often taken for granted may not, in fact, happen for them.
Infertility is not just about the babies, it’s about not being part of the full life cycle.
Let me drive the point home. A piece called Revisiting Infertility – Same Old Prejudices in the Australian newspaper The Age supports my position. It’s written by a woman who 30 years after her infertility diagnosis becomes a grandmother to her stepdaughter’s son. Should be a beautiful story…until you read some of the ugly comments she faced from her fertile friends. Comments like: “Now, what are you going to be called?”You’re not his real
grandma” and “Are you able to do anything with him? It can’t be easy when you haven’t had
Slings and arrows like that get launched at Infertiles through a lifetime. Now what was that you were saying about getting over it? It would be a hell of a lot easier if you didn’t always remind us that we are different and if you didn’t imply that we are somehow less capable of relating to children.
P.S. I’d like to thank Rachel who first highlighted this story on her blog.