I hope this doesn’t come across as a feel sorry for me post (though it probably will and I just need to suck it up).
The last two and a half years have been the most difficult of my life. Finding out I’m not capable of producing sperm and thus not being able to ever have children has changed my life. It’s changed my outlook on life from a perspective that hard work would eventually lead to things working out to one that now see’s no point in working hard. It’s changed relationships from being strong to never being the same. It has also led me to connect with many amazing people in a community I never knew existed.
The infertility community has been great to me. I’ve learned so much by reading stories and following journey’s of others that can inspire future people going through infertility that there is light at the end of the tunnel. Some have had their journey’s result in pregnancies and births. Others have moved onto adopting. There are also those who are forgotten who have moved onto Childless/free lives. And there are those still in the trenches who are working towards moving forward in some way. There are too many individuals to list in this blog piece.
Recently I had a discussion with some of these great people. The discussion was around how just because one chapter in a person’s life is bad doesn’t mean the next one will be bad. The two other people in the discussion both recently became pregnant. For them though infertility was a bad chapter their next chapter has the potential to be something great (I’m keeping my fingers crossed that it is for them). I don’t begrudge them for that in fact I’m extremely happy for them as it couldn’t have happened to two better people.
My input into the discussion was how my story was having multiple bad chapters and that I had no reason to believe a good chapter to my story would be coming anytime soon. This chapter has been worst case scenario across the board leading to a deep depression. The feedback I received was that Hero’s always have it the worst and that they are the strongest to overcome the challenges they face. Obviously the feedback was given with the best of intentions (and it was greatly appreciated) to encourage me to continue to fight and that things would get better even though life is not going to look the way I want it too.
But here’s the thing, I’m no hero I never was a hero nor do I have it in me to become one. I never wanted nor am I capable of a hero’s life. All I wanted was a simple life where I got married to someone that I would grow old with and I would raise kids with that person. There wouldn’t be anything more than that. I’m not capable of more than that. I’m just a regular guy who had to work hard just to get to that level playing field. My success story would have been that despite the odds against me I built a simple regular life together with someone special that included us raising kids together.
The infertility community is filled with success stories with and without children. My story is not a success story. My story didn’t result in me becoming a parent nor has it resulted in a fulfilling childless/free life. My story is not going to inspire anyone that they can get through infertility. I have failed at getting through infertility. It has defeated me.
I was reminded that my story isn’t a success recently when there was a Making Dads week held to recognize men going through infertility. Many men were included who went through infertility and are now dads. The men who spoke are able to offer hope to others something I can’t do. Things like this I’ll never be able to be included in the infertility community telling me I have no place here.
Recognition that I’m not a hero and that I don’t have a success story has told me that it’s time for me to step back in the community and consider walking away for good. My life is too much of a downer and I don’t want to bring others down who need to be lifted up. I’ll leave the lifting up to the real Hero’s who have survived infertility and had success stories. Plus I relate to very few people here as most have moved onto the next chapters in their lives. Unless things change in my life and some miracle happens to me that makes my story a success there’s no reason for me to be here.