My husband on infertility

When I first began reading infertility blogs, I was more than a little concerned why there was such a dearth of men writing about this topic.   Did it only bother women?  Did their husbands even care? Or just not enough to write about it for the world to see?  What did they think about their wives blogging?  I know that men and women handle sub/infertility differently, and that not all can ever be accurately portrayed through written word, but I recognized this difference as just another thing to add to the pile that makes infertility so isolating.  It separates even the husband and wife at their most intimate moment.

It affects both of us and we are one through the sacrament of marriage, but to say that we handle our sub-fertility differently would be an understatement.  And not because one of us is doing something wrong. There is a reason women write about it, besides being more relational in general.  A woman’s body is the one that is to be changed by childbirth and motherhood, while a man’s body would always stay the same regardless of their fatherhood.  Since it is happening directly in my physical body, a body which was designed to do something that its not, it often feels like I am trapped in the middle of the storm, fighting a physical battle against an uncooperative body and swimming in hormones that scatter emotions without my consent.  My husband, while not directly in the storm, has a front row view of it and can feel the fringe of the rain and wind.  He’s so close to the storm and witnesses everything, but he escapes the torment of literally being in the storm.

To be so close to that storm, see it raging and battering their wives, and yet be powerless to stop it?  I don’t know that I give my husband the credit he deserves for being strong enough to endure it.

And yet, I’m thankful he’s not trapped with me.  From his more observant role, he’s able to have a better perspective on what’s really going on, he can see beyond what I can I see when I’m trapped in the dark clouds.  He can see the blue skies coming in the distance, where shelter is that will help me weather the storm, and just generally accompany me to show me that I am not in the storm alone and I will not die there alone either, no matter how it looks from my angle.  And for this I am thankful. It is not a fatal storm.  I cannot imagine the chaos if he was trapped in this downpour with me, day in and day out.  We wouldn’t be able to guide each other and we might truly loose our direction.

There were times in the beginning of this experience that he didn’t quite realize how dark those clouds were – how could he notice from where he was?  The hurricane doesn’t look that bad from a distance.  There are days he could use some reminding that my perspective is not so clear as his, that its not so easy for me to just ‘know’ that this storm will pass when all I see are clouds in any direction.  Sometimes when the thunder is screaming and the howling wind is deafening it makes no difference what my husband says anyways.  I can’t hear him through the racket.  Besides, his words have no power on the storm itself.  It will beat against me regardless.  There are days when we just have to literally cling together and bear the brunt of it.  Wait for it to pass and for the bluer skies to come.  On those days that I am so tired of being beaten down and drenched that his hands and hugs are the only thing that seem to reassure me that it will be OK.

That’s when being apart is the hardest.

Fortunately, I had the chance to ask my husband a few questions and record his concise answers on paper a few months ago when we were being interviewed for a story in the CCL magazine.  I’m so glad I have his responses now that we’re apart and I can’t feel his reassuring embrace during the tougher moments.  I wanted to share his thoughts here, especially since the husband’s perspective in the infertility blogging world is so scarce. They’re in bullet format, nothing fancy, and I bolded the parts I liked the most.

–  One difficult part of dealing with infertility is that you’re in a minority group that is not recognized in our culture.  There is no acknowledgment that infertility is a privation of a good, the inherent good of children, something that should be present.  This doesn’t have personal implications so much as implications for our society and where our values are at.  It makes me sad that people can’t understand anymore that this is such a sad thing, unlike 500 years ago when it was probably more universally recognized.  It also conceals the cross of this suffering since people don’t have the ability to understand that its suffering. There’s no empathy.

–  The emotional toil comes from trying to balance how much you let go vs. how much you pursue treatment.  The pain is in the uncertainty of how to act. It takes a lot to answer these questions and dig deep to see who you are and where you’ll go from here.  This has helped our marriage because by being forced to address these hard to talk about topics, we’ve been forced to acknowledge, address, and accept the deep fears of possibilities that attack the foundation of marriage: 1) you might never have kids, 2) as much as you’d like to think otherwise, you are weak, your marriage covenant is vulnerable to one of the deepest attacks that can happen to a married couple, 3) you may not leave a physical legacy.  Although it is hard, this makes you discuss the very foundation and principle components of what exactly makes your marriage unique and distinguish that from what is desirable, but ultimately optional.

– Infertility is a good reminder that we’re shooting for the Holy Place in Heaven, not the Hall of Fame on Earth.

–  This trial has made me realize how the graces to communicate about this issue are stronger for my wife and how I need to grow in that regard. It is 110% true that infertility effects men and women differently. Every month brings about discussions that have small graces and is almost like a test when I see our relationship is suffering as a result of the different ways we handle this cross. Am I going to choose God and be inspired to change or will I ignore those graces?  Making our marriage work in the small ways and the day to day life when this is hanging over our heads is the hardest part.  Every moment is a challenge for me to be better than I thought I could be.

–  Advice for men starting to go through this:  Make yourself ponder those three points and be able to handle their consequences.  You learn a lot in silence and meditation, as with other trials. Listening to your spouse rather than trying to figure them out is more important, half the time they just want to be heard.  Although this cross may feel like its affecting your wife more and your wife is directing the lead on how to handle it, remember that your meditations and spiritual direction are also very important to your marriage.  Don’t be afraid to offer prayerful direction to her.

There, that almost felt like a virtual hug.

 

What does your husband have to say about your sub/infertility? What does he do best that helps you through the storm? If you write a post about it, let me know! 

How I interpret reserved maternity seats

Once when I was boarding a crowded bus in Mexico, I saw this sign above one row of seats:

Thinking that this was the seat that would make me pregnant (and they had left it open for me! they knew I was coming!) naturally I sat down in it.

But the more I sat there and stared at the picture, the more I decided that this seat might actually have an equal chance at giving me a larger-yet-saggier chest, a hunchback, and a huge ba-dunka dunk.  However, I thought the possible pros outweighed the cons, so I continued to sit.

(Un)Fortunately, to date I have not ended up with any of the above.

But then again, neither has my husband.

Oh well.

These things come in threes…

Got two pregnancy announcements over here today, so does anyone have something to add to it? It seems these things come in threes and I was kind of hoping just a little bit that #3 would be a sub/infertile blogger.

 

Maybe Sunshine from the other day counts? (Congrats Sunshine!)

Anyone else have something to tell us?

 

I’m sure you’d be screaming it from the rooftops if you were.

Cheating at NFP

When we first got married, I feel pressure (from myself) to make sure that we followed the rules of our NFP method exactly.  I did want to be the one to show that NFP does work to postpone pregnancy.  It was important for us to avoid, so it was equally important for us to follow the guidelines of the method (which included abstinence if unsure about that days observations).  I do think that the success of using NFP is partially equivalent to the seriousness of avoiding pregnancy.  Imagine my surprise then, when I discovered on an online NFP forum that there were what seemed like multitudes of women who had ‘accidentally’ used a day and were concerned at the possibility of pregnancy.

I realize that I am a naive, recently married, and now sub-fertile woman with a whole life of supposed ‘fertility’ left, so there are many situations that I have yet to encounter in my marriage (that honestly, right now, does include a fair amount of sex – did you notice the sub-fertile part?) but I was amazed at the number of women that basically seemed to ‘cheat’* at the rules of NFP.  This is not an admonishment (and I did learn about this back in my blissful “I must be fertile because my sister is” phase), but I started to wonder if I was in the minority of couples who rigorously followed the rules.

So a nosy question to all those who have used NFP to avoid pregnancy: I am curious, have you ever ‘cheated’ at NFP?  Do you regularly cheat?  Cheating for the sake of discussion here is when you knowingly break the guidelines of your method of NFP, i.e., when you knowingly decide to have intercourse on a fertile or unsure day, despite previously deciding to not attempt to achieve pregnancy. I do also want to say that understand about the frustration that accompanies long abstinence required during breast-feeding, but I still want to include being unsure about your signs s breaking the rules of NFP here.

So my answer first (because once upon a time, we did use NFP to avoid pregnancy).  We have used the peak + 3 evening before and I remember feeling the need to tell someone that we technically could be pregnant that month, just so they wouldn’t blame it on the method!  And I remember being really excited (hence my hypothesis that not all cheating is really cheating after all) at the possibility of pregnancy.

If you don’t want me or others to see your name, please feel free to make up a name/email or comment as anonymous.  I promise no judging, I’m just trying to gauge if couples generally follow the rules to the tee or not.  Thanks!

*And yes, I get the awkwardness of using the word cheat to define a personal decision between you and your spouse, so please forgive me.  Or suggest a better word?

Wedding dress memory lane, anyone?

Betty Beguiles asked about wedding dresses the other day and I’ve been wanting to chime in but have been limited in my free time.  So here I am a little late but, better late than never.  So here’s my post about my wedding dress!  Which yes, was very special to me.

But first a quick digression.  I was flipping through digital wedding photos while a sample was running in lab.  I came across our wedding photographer’s blog post where she posted all our wedding pictures and a flood of emotions came over me.  Just seeing those pictures and remembering how I felt walking down that aisle and cutting that cake and seeing all our goofy smiles to prove it just made me tear up.  I look forward to the day when I get to see that man every day again, instead of little trips every few weeks before we separate again.  I haven’t written much about it, but this has been emotionally/mentally/physically challenging and I just can not wait for it to be over.  For us to be a normal couple again that commutes to a normal workplace 30 min. away instead of internationally.  I know it will be worth it in the long run, but until then it is not easy.  So I was looking at these pictures and silently tears started streaming down my face, tears of joy/nostalgia/tiredness and everything and who walks in but my boss. She hasn’t walked in like that in months.  Embarrassing.  I acted like I wasn’t crying (even though it was obvious) and I just answered her questions.  But her husband lives in China so maybe she understands.

Anyway, onto the dress.  I was never one of those girls who imagined my wedding dress.  In fact, I was one of those girls who screamed and kicked every time I was forced to wear a dress when I was younger.  For this reason, I was concerned about finding a dress that was ‘me’.  Of course, as soon as I saw it I knew it was perfect.  The one.  And well, for me, I think it was :)

It had little cap sleeves and a square/Queen Anne neckline and lace all over.  Lace was the only thing I knew I wanted.

"Model" shot my sister took of me while our photographer was taking someone else's picture. Hence fake smile.

But the open back is what really sold me.  It kind of looked like a heart.

The back is what sold me.

And another favorite part was my bustle.  French, as opposed to American I guess?  Either way, it was way cool.

The French bustle

Especially when I twirled!

Ok, enough bragging.  My dress was tight.  And so was my photographer.

It was funny though, because I tried to get a friend of mine of similar stature to use it later.  It was just so beautiful I wanted to share it!  She respectfully declined and I thought it was because she didn’t want a used dress, which I could understand.  However, it later came out that her mom didn’t think it was modest enough.  Ooops.  Oh well.

Her loss.  Ha!

You should post about your wedding dress too so I’m not the only late one :P

New Knits

So the famous knitting update…I’m starting to look forward to doing these!  I finished a project I’d been working on since the first time I went to Mexico:  a huge, soft knitted scarf . When I started on it back in the fall, it progressed quickly because it uses big needles and chunky yarn.  However, I quickly realized that under no circumstance in either geographic location I was oscillating between would I ever need such a wide, warm scarf.  So it sat unfinished to knit the socks.  How wrong I was!  TEXAS ICE STORM came two weeks ago (where we had for all of 3 hours – and 800 car accidents as a result)  and I finished this project in 1 night because I knew I would surely freeze to death without it.  Here it is in all its glory:  Chunky Scarf!

Next project…I mentioned my roommate wanted a hat like the one I made before.  So I tried to knit her one in time for her birthday.  And then Ice Storm was in the forecast, so I stayed up late one night trying to finish it because she did not even own a hat. Imagine my surprise when I finally finished it and tried to put it on.  It wouldn’t fit over my moonhead!!

FIrst hat I made (right) vs. new hat I made (left)

See, Eloisa?  I do have a cabeza de luna!  It turns out the directions didn’t include the needle size (and I forgot what I used last time) and I knitted it using the wrong needles.  That, apparently, makes a big difference.  Its super tight and really compresses the noggin.  That’s what I get for refusing to ever make a gauge swatch!  I need to find an 8 year old to give it to…

Final project, my first project knitting on a round needle!  All the internet sites make it sound like torture, but I found it surprisingly fun and easy.  The shape of the needle keeps the points close together so its easier to maneuver and knit quickly.  So my advice to all other knitters out there, do not fear the circle needle!  It might become your best friend.  Introducing, ‘Shroom Hat.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Its supposed to be a little slouchy, but I think I could have extended both the ribbing and the ‘shroom part to make it slouchier.  Also, with long hair, the only way I can wear it is with the hair in a bun (which I usually do anyway) otherwise the hat will just pop off.   I would have liked to use a brighter color yarn, but I just used what I had.  If I wear it incorrectly, it looks like a chef hat!  I will probably make this hat again since it looks cute from the front and is more stylish.

Anyways, that’s what I got!

 

BTW…my roommate painted that orange painting in the background…isn’t she talented?

Improvement

So I’m following my own advice and writing about a happy moment that happened almost right after I wrote that post yesterday.

I didn’t cry.

Maybe that doesn’t sound happy, but it was a big victory for me.

I didn’t cry while telling friends from another lab about our sub-fertility.

This is improvement!  Or maybe proof that the hype up is worse than the actual event.  Or proof that the angst is in getting comments, which usually happens when you tell moms or other people that like to give advice on child-rearing.

Lunch with another married graduate student and another girl from his lab.

“We’re going to start trying after graduation” I knew this.  They have been telling everyone this plan for almost a year now.   We are always quiet and smile and nod when this comes up. But this time he followed up, “Do you want kids after graduation?”

Hesitation.

Umm, yes.  Its just not always that simple.

“Well, of course.  But I mean…”

The whole conversation took me by surprise so there was really no way to respond when the girl continued “Why the hesitation.  Wait, are you pregnant? Are you going to try to get pregnant?  Wait, are you trying now??!” with anything but the truth.  But it came out easily.  Matter of fact.

Yes, we are trying now.  We have been for quite a while.

“Oh.”

And I picked up and continued the conversation to drown out the expected silence.  I think it helped that I wasn’t looking for consolation from them, like I have from other people.  I think it helped that they didn’t have the experience of parenthood to make them feel like experts in the matter.  It felt more like it was an exercise in sub/infertility awareness. Hey, it doesn’t always happen like you plan it. While everyone is concerned with not getting pregnant, its not always as easy at it seems.

My husband says I’m evolving. Ha!

Anyways, it was a small victory.

 

I think my happy moments look different now.

Why is negative inspiration stronger?

I’ve realized that I rarely write in my blog when I’m really happy.  It is not my impulse to write when I’m happy (although I occasionally do get it) but rather, just enjoy the moment of being happy.  Usually I finally get around to writing something after I’ve had a thought in my mind so long that won’t go away and I just need to work through it in order to 1) get it out so it will stop bothering me or 2) to figure out why I am feeling a certain way.  Negative or bothersome thoughts are the ones that make it out more easily, because I really want to stop thinking about them.  Happy, fun thoughts I want to keep around so I don’t have the same impulse to “get them out already” on my blog.  I realize this may skew my writings to make me seem more negative than I am in reality.  I’m really a pretty happy, goofy person!  I know that’s convincing if I have to tell you.  I’ve noticed that I’ve done this all my life in diaries too: write more when I’m upset.

Apparently, being unsettled is my muse.

Anyways, I know this will be hard to change, but I guess its good I recognize it.  I hate the idea of putting only negativity out into the internets and although that has been my tendency, especially as I work through issues relating to my sub-feritlity,  I’m going to try to balance it is a little better.

Starting with…more knitting projects!  I’ve made a couple more things I hope to have pictures up of soon.  And fortunately for me it was cold enough recently to actually wear them!

My marriage/faith/fertility time-line

I compiled this nice little time-line of my marriage/faith/fertility a while ago and never published it.  I guess I will now, just to share.  Its way more detailed in terms of life events than a treatment history but, maybe understanding where I’ve been will help you understand where I’m coming from and serve as a reference on this blog.  Enjoy learning more about me than you ever cared to!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

April 2012 – After being on progesterone shots and suppositories for 36 weeks, we gave birth to our healthy son, Samuel, at home!  God is good!

August 2011 – Get chastised for not taking my temp 4x’s a day to increase my T3 dosage (still at 7.5 mcgs – which is funny, considering someone once told me Dr. H won’t even look at temperatures?) Parlodel, both 2x a day.  HCG on peak +3, 5, 7 and whoops, ran out of it on day 9.  Order it for next month.  Did  my blood draw, took a pregnancy test on August 15th – peak + 12 and nothing.  Waited for the cramps to bring the flood but they didn’t.  August 21st – peak + 18 took another test.  Positive – we have conceived for the first time!  First full cycle after antibiotics + surgery combo!  Wow.

July 2011 – Finished up antibiotics.  Did HCG on peak +5,7, and 9.  Noticed increased irritability, anger, and strong emotional reactions, but luteal phase was 14 days.  Symptom review from Hilgers comes back and makes me a candidate for new thyroid study.  Started T3 on next CD1

June 2011 – Visit Omaha for a week to complete: laproscopy, selective HSG, endometrial cultures, and ultrasound series.  Some endometriosis is removed from pelvic lining and left ovary, tubes are open and with good pressure, and ovulation occurs on day after peak with 2.6 cm follicle.  Diagnosis of chronic endometritis of the uterus.  Culture results come back positive 2 weeks later and start 5 weeks of antibiotics.  I guess I’m in “treatment” now.

March 2011 – Perform and send in to Omaha a month long blood draw panel for thyroid and other hormone testing.

February 2011 – Finally send in new patient forms to Dr. Hilgers after finding out he’s covered by our insurance starting Jan.1st.  Increasing folic acid amount (from 400 to 1200mcgs), starting loaded veggie diet with (intentionally) limited meat and no low-fat dairy.

November 2010 – Miss a cycle for the first time in over a year due to distance from husband.  Wow, it feels good not to wonder if I’m pregnant.

October 2010 – Receive referral back from Hilgers.  My cycles are “functionally abnormal”.  Now what.  Stop taking magnesium, messes my stomach up too much.  Wait.

August 2010 – Send in our 2 months of charts to Dr. Hilgers and move to Mexico.  Per practitioner’s recommendation, now taking  magnesium and vitamin D3 in addition to B-vitamin, flaxseed oil, folic acid.  Tired of peeing bright yellow already.

July 2010 – HSG shows slightly tilted uterus with two open tubes.  Pain feels similar to my period and self-proclaim that I’m a hoss…maybe I got lucky or maybe those period cramps are pretty painful after all…

June 2010 – Meet the Creighton practitioner, begin classes and begin charting.

May 2010 – Appointment with doctor on day 28 of my cycle. Charges me $50 to tell me I’m not pregnant.  Blood test for Progesterone and CA-125 (indicator of endometriosis):  Progesterone comes back low (get period next day) and CA-125 is low too, indicating no endo? (not entirely conclusive).   Go back two weeks later for ultrasound of my follicles.   I guessed which follicle I thought was maturing based on pain and was wrong.  That’s not right.  Despite that, great follicle growth and post-coital test reveal all systems go on day12, 12 hours after the deed.  Email Sew (yes, she made my timeline) after reading about her history involving ovulation pain.  She strongly recommends Creighton (surprised?).  I sign up for classes that day. Decide to learn Creighton to see what the hype is about and to practice charting when we move to Mexico, because oh yeah, we’re moving to Mexico.

April 2010 – Husband receives grant in Mexico.  Actually toy with the idea of going.  Make a doctor’s appointment to see what’s up.

January 2010 (also) – Have a chance to talk to an NFP-only family practitioner at an NFP training course and she mentions that my ovulation pain (still present, some months much stronger than others) and irregular temperatures in the luteal phase may indicate a hormone issue that might be helped with certain vitamins.  I eat healthily but it’s a good place to start anyway.  Begin taking evening primose/flaxseed oil and continue with the Optivite (which I was also on due to PMS symptoms.  Also was already taking folic acid).

January 2010 – Famous misread pregnancy test incident (2nd I’d ever used – from a 2-pack). Think I’m pregnant and am delusion-ally happy for a full 20 min. before my period starts.  I had never understood those commercials that said 1 in 4 women misread pregnancy tests, but afterward understood how one could “will” themselves to see two lines.  Develop deep contempt of my 17 day luteal phases and pregnancy tests and upon husband’s advising, vow to never take another test again.

September 2009 – Husband applies for grant in Mexico for 2010 year while I’m in China.  Attend retreat and have unintentional spiritual guidance (is spiritual guidance ever intentional?) regarding starting our family.  Realize that now all of our personal reasons for postponing are non-existent, unfortunately for the study.  We know we need to change something.   Take a leap of faith and decide to leave the study after 8 months (which we were told would not affect the statistics) and stop using NFP to avoid.

Summer 2009 – Gnawing feeling that this study is not what we should be doing.  Talk about how having a child before graduation might actually be more flexible/speed-up graduation.  Discuss with husband and decide that we will not back out on our commitment for the year.

Spring 2009 – Begin to realize that reasons to postpone children should come from within rather than outside forces (read: a study).

February 2009 – Finish NFP certification process and begin teaching classes jointly.  With each passing month, will and reasons to postpone feel weaker.  Decide to enter an NFP study for  a year to recommit ourselves to postponing pregnancy for another year, since we do feel like a unique couple who would love children but would probably be best to wait (We did note that there is an option to leave the study if intentional).

November 2008 – After some prompting, begin the process to become NFP teachers.  Think “Who is going to listen to teachers who have only been married for a few months?!” (fortunately, this girl did) but quickly realize that before we have children is a great time to get trained, if anything to ease the load of the teachers with kids.

October 2008 – Get married.  We are both still 2 years from graduating and live far from family, so we decide that will use NFP to avoid pregnancy until I’m closer to graduation (he’s ahead of me – so we thought probably in 1-2 years).

January 2008 – He proposes, I say yes :)  We get stuck in an elevator for New Year’s/our engagement.  Go to mass at the L.A. cathedral the next day.

Summer 2007 – Curious about this NFP thing.  Order kit and start charting, just to see if it’s possible.  Surprised at the ease and fall in love with the data. Nerd.

Easter 2007 – Confirmed in the Catholic Church and the boyfriend’s whole family flies out for the big day and my parents/brother come too. Good times.

October 2006 – Went to doc for increasing pain around my abdomen around the middle of my cycle (later realize it’s probably ovulation pain, but something’s off – it really, really hurts for up to 4 days of my cycle).  Get one ultrasound done and am supposed to come back in two weeks to get the other.  Pain goes away and I don’t go back, to “save money”.  Stupid (grad) student.

Summer 2006 – Entered RCIA classes to “learn more”.  Famous last words :)  Also started strong acne medicine that requires you be on birth control.  Convince my doctor that I do not need birth control because I will not be having sex.  Hard sell, but she lets me sign a waiver (and the rights to sue her).

Spring 2006 – Learn about NFP (and call my now-husband crazy, as he is the first person I’ve met in my life who doesn’t want to use contraception in their marriage) and later, Catholicism. (much more detailed version of my conversion here)

January 2006 – Get off the pill on a whim, 2 months after meeting my boyfriend (now-husband) mostly to help us commit to a chaste relationship, a change for both of us.  Normal cycle returns soon after.

How to tell people about your sub-fertility

I brought up yesterday how amazing it was to be pleasantly surprised when a friend reacts in a supportive way.  I want to reiterate that I understand that not everyone will react that way and that the actions we take to protect ourselves are just that, to protect ourselves.  It was just a nice reminder that I do not need to protect myself from everyone and that good people who can relate to me do exist.

I need more pictures in my posts...here's a Mexican sunset!

In general, I am a very open person and I can talk about things that are personal to me without feeling too vulnerable. However, I’ve realized the issue with sub-fertility is not so difficult for me to talk about it, as it is for me to tell people.  After all, what good response is there to “We haven’t been able to conceive.”  Its just a conversation killer.

Anytime I’ve told people about our problems (I’ve only told family and a few close friends who know me well), I’ve started crying.  As soon as the initial tears start flowing, I’m OK.  I can talk with my friends/family about it and not cry again.  Of course, I’m not really about telling just any old person, but about telling the people you’re closest too for example, who might wonder why you’re taking a vacation to…Nebraska? My friend this weekend gave me the idea after she told me about a similar situation with her mom.  When her mom had breast cancer, she was fine talking about it with friends and coworkers, but she just could not tell them herself.  She worked it out where her manager told everyone instead, so by the time she talked to them they already knew and it was easier for her.

I’m big on owning and accepting my feelings.  This is happening to me, so a big part of me wants to be the strong one that can tell people about this.  After all its my life, so I’d like to be there when it happens.  A prideful part of me wants to be the one that has it all together and accepts this completely in stride and doesn’t cry in front of people.  But, I know that would just be a show.  It does affect me.  It dose cause me pain and I don’t know what I gain by hiding it other than by giving off an “everything’s OK” guise to further propogate the idea that I don’t need anyone’s help.

I’m starting to see the advantage of say, having my husband tell his family so that its easier to talk about in the future with them and so that I don’t scare them all away and make them not talk about it ever again by being a blubbering mess.  I know other women feel differently, but it is therapeutic for me to talk about it, so I don’t want to ostracize people and make them think I can’t.   My big fear with this is that because I don’t tell them myself, they will think they can’t talk about it to me and then it will be even more awkward.

I'm already awkward. I don't need anything else to make me more awkward.

This is of course assuming that they don’t already know, which I’m guessing they have an inkling.  The last time we were at his grandparent’s house his grandma asked us why we don’t have kids yet (in Spanish, so keep in mind I’m just barely following along – but I did catch that!) and the hubs responded with our patented “We’ll have them when God gives them to us.”  Never to be easily tricked, his grandma responded with something along the lines of “Well, you have to work at it to you know!” Did I mention she’s a little feisty? And apparently his dad chimed in with “That’s why they’re going to see the Virgin of Guadalupe, Grandma.”  So.  Maybe they got the hint (even if it was lost on Grandma) or maybe his dad was just trying to save us from intense Grandma questioning.  Its a fine line you can’t distinguish between!

Anyway, I’d appreciate any personal stories on this as I’m totally on the fence about how to handle it now that I can understand why it might be better for everyone if my husband just deals with his family, even though I am concerned about the “egg-shell” effect.

Do you tell your family hard news yourself or do you get your spouse to do it?