I used to know how to answer that question, with an assured and confident negative. When pressed, I was able to justify our childless marriage by saying that there was no way on earth I was going to have a baby in Germany and that we needed to wait until we were stationed in one place for longer than nine months before we even considered it.
Now that we've been trying to have a baby, I no longer know how to answer this question. I've been asked it frequently lately, and a simple No doesn't really seem to capture our situation.
But it's not really appropriate to launch into a sob story of how long we've been trying and that we would be having a baby next month if my body had worked properly from the beginning. Or that I'm not almost 30 and childless on purpose. My husband said that if he's learned anything from this process, it's that he'll never again assume that people are childless by design.
I know eight women who are pregnant right now, eight women who've all gotten pregnant after we started trying. A few of them didn't even want their pregnancies.
I hate the word "unfair," but I find myself thinking it more and more often.
DO NOT give up hope. My husband and I tried for three years with a couple of heartaches. Then when I went to have the normal blood work before having exploratory surgery to figure out if anything could be done, I was told that the surgery was now, apparently unnecessary. So hang in there!
Posted by: Lemon Stand at October 04, 2007 04:45 AM (wh7CA)
you may want to read this blog...
Praying for you, and your DH.
Posted by: armywifetoddlermom at October 04, 2007 04:51 AM (U0kWG)
Sarah, I'm praying for you.........
Posted by: debey at October 04, 2007 05:22 AM (WRa1w)
. . . . I, too, pray for that gift for you and your husband.
Perhaps an answer in the meantime might be:
"Not yet, but. . . . ."
Posted by: prophet at October 04, 2007 05:27 AM (Yagmr)
The answer for now is "not yet". Those two words convey that you want to have kids, but haven't had them yet. If they're insensitive enough to then inquire as to why... that's when you can lay the story on them.
A flat out "no" could mean anything from "not yet" to "not ever" to "unable". People ask about kids as a framework for how to conduct a conversation. If you do have kids and they're at a loss, they can always ask about them. If you don't have kids they will ask if you work... etc. Some people are just plain rude and nosey, but most just want to have a way to converse with someone they don't know well. After all, it's hard to get to know someone by just talking about the weather and politics is very tricky.
I try to give people the benefit of the doubt about their intentions until they show me that they're wacko.
The hardest thing is to not compare yourself or situation with someone else. No matter what is happening. That way lies madness as your life and theirs are totally different!
Posted by: Teresa at October 04, 2007 08:34 AM (rVIv9)
I fully believe that it happens when it is suppose to and that doesn't always align with our own wishes and plans. Sometimes it happens later than we would like, sometimes earlier!
I think if people were asking me that same question and I were in your shoes, I would say back to them, "why do you ask?"
Hugs to you!!
Posted by: LMT at October 04, 2007 08:43 AM (ASoq0)
It is unfair. And the unfairness can continue as well if your child comes early or has other issues.
But hold on to hope, I'm sure you'll be complaining about pregnancy-related gas before you know it. And if not, there are always other options -- IVF, adoption, etc.
Posted by: Non-Essential Equipment at October 04, 2007 10:14 AM (u8uog)
Teresa beat me to it: "Not yet" is all you need. The urge to say anything else is about your feelings, not about their question.
Maybe you won't mind me speaking like a big sister now--and if you do mind, well, maybe a little anger at me will take your mind off your troubles.
I think you would be doing yourself a favor by taking "unfair" out of it. Other people's child situations have no bearing on yours, and unfortunately you don't get to see the big picture surrounding why this is not happening when you want it to. Many women go to great lengths to get pregnant when their bodies are saying "NO" in the loudest possible language, only to find their doctor telling them their baby has Trisomy 18 or something similarly horrible. Others have miscarriage after miscarriage.
I am so sad for you, and of course don't know what your doctors say as to possible reasons why, but I hope this might give you a bit of perspective and even hope. As Lewis said, nobody can know what would have happened, but if time goes on and this still does not happen for you, perhaps you can think that it might have been worse.
And if it does I'll be among the first with the congrats!
Posted by: Anwyn at October 04, 2007 01:58 PM (dzxw9)
I really hate the angst you are going through. I cannot imagine life without my children. None of them were planned. My time of having them was pre-pill days. While they were not planned they were eagerly anticipated.
My daughter spent 18 months of anxiety before she had her first one, and did not get pregnant the second time until a year of trying. So don't give up hope. You have many blog friends and readers who are hoping and praying that you will soon be a mother.
Posted by: Ruth H at October 04, 2007 06:27 PM (dKYTK)
Sarah, you of all people should trust that when it's 'time' - it will happen. Heck, you're 30 you still have PLENTY of time left. My Mom didn't have me until 32 and my sister until 34. My best friend had hers at 36. And my cousin had hers (twins no less) at 42. The good news is - you get to keep 'trying' with your husband and that's a blessing. Give yourself a break. Remember - if it's to be - it will be. For now, enjoy the life you have and don't worry so much about it. It will be someway, somehow, someday. Just have faith.
Posted by: Kathleen A at October 05, 2007 02:09 AM (7qm8p)
Sometimes well meaning people have no idea how much their words can hurt. My dd is an IVF baby after almost 4 years of ttc. I'm sorry that you have to walk this road. At times I enjoyed making a few people blush when I used to answer "We're working on it" but usually I said "Not yet" as well. Hang in there!
Posted by: dutchgirl at October 05, 2007 05:11 PM (rNFDm)
When I first was married, a wise friend of mine told me (after she already had 4 children), "There is no perfect time to have children. You can plan and plan, but sometimes it does not happen at that moment you think is best in your life." I took those words to heart and remembered them 6 years later as Duckhunter and I decided we wanted to start our family.
We hit a bullesye on the first try, but my pregnancy definately had its valleys and troubles. As a first time pregnant woman, it freaked me out. Then I got my healthy daughter...and 3 years later while on the fence if we want anymore...I still remember those words from a friend.
And I believe your time will come when you least expect it!!
Posted by: Mel at October 16, 2007 10:08 AM (2wzIZ)
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