Direct from the WTF file

February 24, 2010

So a few days ago DH and I were at his aunt and uncle’s 40th anniversary party.  It was a nice time.  We sat at the “kids” table (although the youngest kid was 33) and it was good.  I had no other role but to sit and chat and eat.  Can’t beat that.

After dinner though, the MIL dropped this on me.  And my head is still spinning several days after the fact.  She asked me how the fertility doctor appointment went.  Fair enough, I had mentioned it to her late last summer and never followed up.  I told her the outcome in a nut shell and she agreed with me.  She didn’t think it was a good idea to take potentially unsafe drugs either and she’s a breast cancer survivor so she knows first hand what those drugs can do to you.

But here’s where it gets weird.  Really really weird.  She lowered her voice and asked me if we had considered a donor.  I was a bit confused and had to ask for clarification.  A sperm donor she said.  Wasn’t there someone we could ask to donate sperm?  A friend?  Or a family member?  Afterall, just because the baby wouldn’t be biologically be DH’s didn’t mean in her opinion that it wasn’t mine.  For the record DH has sperm, he just doesn’t have a lot of them and they are kind of slow.

My jaw hit the floor.  The whole conversation skeeved me out to be honest.  Asking for someone’s sperm is a little weird but it happens.  I’m not entirely sure though, how you’d even go about doing it.  Do you randomly pick some hot guy and approach him with a cup and ask him for 20 minutes of his time?  Do you canvass your male friends?  Which might make future gatherings kind of awkward, especially if you bring the kid along.  Not to mention I don’t care for 95% of DH’s male friends.  Do you hit up the local university and offer a case of beer?  Do you check out the males in the family?  I don’t know about you but I have no desire for my family tree branches to be stunted so asking a family member is not an option.  Besides, how weird would it be trying to figure out who’s related to who and how afterwards.  Sweet mother of Jesus can you imagine the therapy bills?

However, I’m not entirely sure that asking some guy, cup in hand, was exactly what the MIL was getting at.  Which makes it EVEN CREEPIER.  While she didn’t get too detailed, she told me that back in the village some woman had done this and all three people (the husband, wife and donor) had no issue and she didn’t see what the problem was.  Especially if I got pregnant.  Umm here’s the problem.  If you are advocating (between the lines) for me to have sex with some guy who is NOT my husband just to get knocked up I am not cool with that.  Unless said guy is Clive Owen or George Clooney or John Krasinsky.  But those three aside, I do take my marriage vows seriously.  And they explictly state I don’t get to hop into bed with random guys.  Even to get knocked up.

I mentioned to her that perhaps we’d just rethink the adoption option and she was adamant.  No no no she said.  You can’t adopt, the baby won’t be yours.  Which is kind of ironic given that if I followed her advice and somehow obtained sperm from some guy who is NOT my husband the baby wouldn’t be his so I’m not sure how she is justifying this in her weird and twisted mind.

I guess it would be less weird to have my own mother suggest that I do this (although in reality she is just as horrified and creeped out by the whole thing as I am).  But to have my husband’s mother suggest this is just plain woo-woo weird.  Two cups of crazy weird.  And futher confirms my belief that she is completely self-absorbed and cares only for what her friends think and not her childrens’ happiness.  Afterall, what kind of woman would outright tell her daughter-in-law to find some guy and get him to knock her up….either with a cup and a turkey baster or the old fashioned way?

And how does she think her son will feel if he ever finds out?  I can only imagine that conversation.  Oh honey, there’s a little something I didn’t tell you about Junior…..yeah don’t think so.

But the highlight of the whole conversation (oh it gets so much better) was when she told me that she asks God every day why He is punishing her.  She says that between her good-for-nothing daughter  not wanting to get married and give her grandchildren (because it’s ALL about the MIL) and her son who so far hasn’t given her grandchildren she tells God everyday to stop punishing her.  Yeah, because a) God has nothing else to do but listen to my MIL…forget the war in the Middle East, poverty, global warming, injustice and the like, His first priority needs to be making sure I get knocked up and b) she’s a good person who doesn’t deserve this.

Now I don’t know about you but in my opinion (and probably God’s) good people don’t suggest that their daughters-in-law look outside of their marriage to find men to impregnate them.  Just saying.


It’s complicated

January 9, 2010

I’ve hinted and alluded to this and figure that given the state of affairs at Casa NotSoClean today is a good day to tell this tale.

DH and I have been unsuccessfully trying to have a child for nearly two years now.  Without getting into too many TMI-type details, we know that there is an issue with him.  It’s not treatable but it’s not entirely insurmountable either.

And yes, we’ve seen a fertility doctor.  I personally don’t believe in medically assisted pregnancy for myself.  If you do, or you have done it/will do/want to do it/are doing it that’s fine.  It’s not based on religious thought or anything, it’s just not something I want to do.

Our doctor suggested a course of action that was not something I felt comfortable with.  As I’m contraindicated for Clomid, the drugs they wanted to put me on are still in clinical trials and are developed for and used to treat breast cancer .  Apparently an unexpected side effect happened to cause ovulation. Doctors THINK these drugs are safe.  I don’t want to play Russian roulette with my body or the body of any child I conceive.  Thalidomide anyone?  Doctors thought that was safe too.

The testing (for me anyway) was arduous, painful and unpleasant.  The “monitoring” was daily until they were sure I had ovulated.  Then the turkey baster would come out and woo hoo….oh wait, they couldn’t guarantee anything.  And they expected us to keep trying the old fashioned way while all of this is going on.

Because let’s face it, while I’m having an ultrasound wand shoved up my hoo-ha by a perfect stranger every morning for a week or so AND THEN GOING ON TO WORK AFTERWARDS, I know I’ll be feeling frisky and ready for some sexy time once DH walks in the door every night.  Ummm no.

The rate of success for us was predicted to be very low.  And we were told that we should continue this “treatment” for at least six months before they’d tweak the drugs.  The rest of the procedures wouldn’t change.

Given my long-standing (and well vocalised) opinions on medically assisted pregnancy, the course of action that was recommended to us, the fact that DH doesn’t even live at home for much of the week now, the pushiness of the clinic to start “treatment” and let’s not discount the fact that my outlaws are off-the-charts nuts in all kinds of ways, I had a meltdown.  I cried for two days, embarrassed myself at work by not having my act even remotely together and worked myself up into a big hot mess and finally told DH I couldn’t go through with it.

I (sort of) joke about it now, but this whole medically assisted pregnancy business upset me on a deep and visceral level.  It infuriated me by the unfairness of the whole situation.  For something that isn’t my issue I’m the one who would have to be “treated”.  There is no treatment for DH.  Period.  End of story.  His contribution to all of this would be to give some blood, have some “happy time” with Palmela, pay the annual $250 monitoring fee as I flat out refused (and yes, state-sponsored healthcare rocks USA…and no we weren’t going for IVF, although that turned out to be a lot cheaper than I would have thought) and wait…for something that may or may not happen.

So I said no.  No to tests, no to drugs, no to monitoring, no to turkey basters, no to pushy doctors, no to no guarantees, no to it all.  And I felt good about it.  Happy even.

Until today.  Recently we’ve found out that a few of our friends are pregnant, all with their second (or third) child.  Some of them have been trying for a long time.  And I’m happy for them. Really, really happy.  But today DH came home upset.  It seems that one of his co-workers’ wives is pregnant.  His co-worker is 26.  DH is devastated.

I tried to cheer him up by reminding him that our lives could be so much worse.  We’re healthy (his co-worker with the pregnant wife has a very, very serious heart condition and in reality may never live to see his child grow up), we have each other, DH just got promoted to a position he’s wanted for a long time, we have well-paying, reasonably secure jobs, we have a beautiful house and now a vacation property, we’re planning some awesome trips this year, we have families who love us (well, DH’s is a little twisted but hey, in their own way they love us).  In short we have great lives.  I even told him I’m fine with getting a dog.  Or adopting a child.  He refuses to be consoled.

He keeps dwelling on how everyone has children but him.  Which, to be honest isn’t true at all…none of his close cousins have children, many of his friends don’t and his sister is unlikely to, regardless of the “I want to find a man and have a baby” line she’s currently spouting.  She may want the man but I have my doubts about the baby.

He spent tonight holed up in the home office.  He wanted to be alone and I respected his wishes.  Later on I tried again to cheer him up but he told me he still wanted to be alone.  DH isn’t prone to bad moods and pouts…those are my domain and my specialty.  I am hoping that tomorrow he cheers up.

But I am worried.  He has never  said anything about me refusing fertility treatments.  And I won’t do them even if he does want me to.  But I wouldn’t blame him for being bitter about me refusing them.  I am petty enough that I would blame him if the situation was reversed.  I’m not proud to admit it but it’s true.  He just keeps repeating that he doesn’t know what he wants to do.

In my head I imagine worst-case scenarios of him leaving me for a woman with many children.  In my heart I cry for his sadness.  In reality I’ll wait it out and see what fate has in store for us.  We don’t have a lot of time left before the ability to have children in any way is no longer an option for us.  We might get lucky or we might get not.  And depending on the day the definition of lucky changes.

It’s complicated.  And sad.  And it makes me wish I could give him what he really wants.  But I like our lives.  No, I love our lives.  Sure I wonder what life would be like if the pitter patter of little feet were more than kitty cat paws.  But I’m not entirely sure I want to find out.  And that makes me feel bad when I see how upset DH is now.  But not bad enough to endure fertility clinics and off-list drugs.  I’ll take my chances with fate and the tried-and-true way of making babies.  You make your own luck in my opinion.