Wednesday, March 29, 2006

No. 142 - Finger Pointing

Mr. DD and I had a little brouhaha last night. It neither involved Brew and most certainly no Ha-Ha. It started when he made some snippy remark about how much time I spend blogging. I responded with “as much time you spend sitting on your ass watching TV” and it didn’t get better from there.

After X was put to bed and I had calmed down, I asked him if he understood why I blog and what exactly does he think it means to “blog”. He got the first part right, which was to get emotional support, but I had to explain that blogging is more than creating a post and publishing. It’s reading other blogs. It’s supporting others with comments. I explained that not all the blogs I read are infertility related. Blogging satisfies my guilty pleasure of just reading. I don’t have time to get absorbed in a novel.

I then elaborated on the support, which is a HUGE deal to me. Here’s the example I gave him: earlier this week I told Mr. DD that a co-worker announced her pregnancy. I relayed the news in a most matter-of-fact manner. He berated me for sounding “vanilla” about the news. I told him that if I had posted that on my blog, I would be consoled by my Blogtopia friends who would say, “That sucks,” “I’m so sorry, that must really be hard,” or “I’m sure it will be your time soon.” No one is going to tell me, “Gee, you sound so ‘vanilla’. Why can’t you be happy for that person?” but that’s what he did.

When a pregnancy is announced, whether it’s IRL or via a blog post, I AM happy for that person. What a miracle, whether it was hard-won or easily obtained. But…here’s the “But”: I am UNhappy for me. Admittedly, this is a selfish aspect, but let’s just be clear here: I’m not trying to get pregnant to please my boss, my neighbor, my SIL, my church, etc. I’m trying to get pregnant to please ME* and MY* needs and wants. I want 9 months to be selfish. I have years to be altruistic. And seriously, I haven’t gone through two IUIs and soon two IVFs; the related bloodletting and cootercams; and put over 4,400 RE-related miles on my car this winter because I’m trying to improve my state’s economy.

I then went on a tear-filled rant: how guilty I feel for losing the baby; how every night for that first year I thought of Baby May; why do we have to go through all this treatment shit when it was so easy with X; why I’m expected to be happy for everyone and not have a moment to feel sorry for myself; and finally I asked him doesn’t he ever feel guilty that we’re not pregnant.

“Why would I feel guilty?” he asks.

You could’ve knocked me over with the breeze from a blink.

“Because of your sperm,” I answered without trying to sound accusatory or hysterical.

“I haven’t seen any proof that it’s me.”

How could he say that when with each IUI, Dr. Samelastnameasme would tell me, “Oooh, DD, Mr. DD’s sample’s not looking so hot.” Oh, that’s right. She was just telling me. Relaying that little bit of conversation to Mr. DD did not qualify as a tentative diagnosis. Not even when we met with Dr. Blinksalot prior to our first IVF who explained that the sperm samples had been so poor that we would have to do ICSI. No open-swim in the Petri dish for his little guys. To him, that was just small talk.

I was beyond livid. “Do you think all of this has been because of ME?” I asked. No, that’s not it at all. He just feels that if we have done everything we could and the RE has done everything she could, and the end result is a pile of shit, then no one is to blame.

“Well I think…” *blink blink*

“That’s just…” *blink blink*

I was speechless, spent. Because he’s right. No one is to blame, so there is nothing to feel guilty about. It’s not like I missed a stim dose one night, or he missed the cup, or the RE was drunk. We ALL did what we thought was best at that time.

He then went on to tell me that I am not the only one hurting through all this. The other day he had to go into the attic and he said there were all these little reminders of what was…and what could be: plastic tubs full of baby clothes, the changing table, bassinet, diaper pail, etc. He aches each time he walks into the new house and has to go by that front bedroom, recalling our plans. He catches himself each time I seemingly casually mention the “baby’s room.” He’s hurting, too, but he says sometimes I’m just so wrapped up in being sad and – ultimately – angry, that he just tries to get through the day without a confrontation.

Lastly, he pointed something out that I’ve always known in the back of my head. For all of us who are trying for that pregnancy and rooting each other on, it’s statistically impossible that it will happen for every single blogger who’s trying…and WE could very well be the ones it just doesn’t happen for.

If so, I will have to try really hard to remember no one is to blame.

*ME and MY also means US or OUR.

Personal factoid: X was conceived March 21, 2001.

18 Punches:

At 2:55 PM, Blogger EJW said...

"...it’s statistically impossible that it will happen for every single blogger who’s trying…and WE could very well be the ones it just doesn’t happen for."

This idea haunts me. Even though I know that other people getting pregnant doesn't fill some PG quota, I'm still subconsciously afraid of this.

But here's what I think: IF bloggers are better educated, more emotionally supported and stable, and generally better off than IF-ers without blogs. Maybe it's the release of tension in writing, maybe it's reading other people's stories and learning about protocols and methods, maybe it's the power of the good thoughts we're all pushing into our computer screens for each other.

So I would amend your statement to be "it’s statistically impossible that it will happen for every single COUPLE who’s trying" but know that the bloggers will eventually get babies and the non-bloggers will be the statistical outliers. Whaddya think?

 
At 3:48 PM, Blogger Suzanne said...

Wow, that was some fight. Men just operate on some whole other level of rationality and emotions. I say screw the statistics, you can skew to say whatever you want so I say we skew them in our favor for a change.

 
At 3:59 PM, Anonymous Leggy said...

I agree, that was some fight. The blame/guilt issue is a tough one and it takes a strong marriage to wade through it all. I'm glad you all are communicating, even if it starts off as a fight, it sounds like it ended with a better understanding of each other.

 
At 4:07 PM, Blogger One Mother's Journey said...

Wow. That was intense. I'm sorry that you had to go through that but in some way doesn't it make you feel a little more assured he's on the same page...kinda? Sometimes I swear my husband just doesn't get it and won't get it no matter what... and then he'll do something or say something that reminds me that his desires are there and I don't give him enough credit.

People who don't blog would have a very hard time understanding those of us that do and you've hit the nail right on the head - it's not just about the posting it's about the emotional support and everything that goes with that. It's critical to us not loosing what's left of the sanity we are trying to preserve. Hang in there.

 
At 4:59 PM, Anonymous Kim said...

I appreciate your support even though it has nothing to do with IF. Thanks!

 
At 2:38 AM, Blogger Pamplemousse said...

Men really just do not get it. Period. Talking of which, you got yours yet???

 
At 7:18 AM, Blogger the waiting line said...

damn it, sorry you had a rough night.

 
At 7:38 AM, Blogger Catizhere said...

Crap DD.

I'm sorry you had such a rotten night.

 
At 8:52 AM, Blogger Well-heeled mom said...

Hey, we must be cyber twins! The whole sitting on your ass watching TV is so my fabulous husband.

You two are alright. IF is hard - on the people and the marriage. It's amazing to me that wanting to add TO the family is so emotionally hard ON the family.

You're lucky, though. You both want the same thing. My hubs is done. DONE. Some smartass friend of mine told me to do it without him. Yeah. Do you think the FBI would clear those fingerprints that I took on a stamp pad in the middle of the night while he was sleeping?????

Karen

 
At 9:44 AM, Blogger DinosaurD said...

Hey DD
I so understand the pain associated with all the baby equipment and clothes (witness my last donation spree). The one thing I couldn't part with soon enough though was the diaper pail - you kept yours????? (sorry... you kept your son's??????)
With regards to the blogging thing - it's the only thing I can pick up at a moment and leave at a moment (as I have all these hours of uninterrupted spare time - ha,ha). It's my sanity break and my 5 or 10 minutes of stimulation all wrapped into one - better than the TV anyday.
DinoD

 
At 12:47 PM, Blogger Thalia said...

"...it’s statistically impossible that it will happen for every single blogger who’s trying…and WE could very well be the ones it just doesn’t happen for."

That haunts me too. Yet we all have to keep on trying, even though we may be the ones. Since we can't tell who we are, we have no choice but to keep toiling up the hill.

I hope it gets a little easier soon.

 
At 1:40 PM, Anonymous Erin said...

That's a tough fight. We've had those before, though in our case, J's swimmers are fine and it is just me. He never feels like it's my fault, though. Men think about these things differently. And that makes things hugely difficult when it comes to such an emotionally-charged issue. It's tough on every marriage to go through IF issues, and I think everyone has this kind of fight occasionally.

Glad that you were able to calm down a bit and talk rationally, and that you got some insight into what happens in Mr. DD's head. I think that makes a huge difference in how people get through this.

I'm still in denial that this doesn't happen for everyone eventually because otherwise, I think I'll just give up now.

 
At 3:34 PM, Blogger Nico said...

That sounds like a doozy. But as others have said, it also sounds as if it ended up perhaps with a better understanding on both sides, which is always positive.

 
At 5:56 AM, Blogger FrogLegs said...

I can't say anything new from what everyone else has said... but this is my first time here- so hi! I found your pole interesting, and your blog. As not many I've found are having 2ndary issues- as I am. I'm glad I found your site. :)

 
At 6:30 AM, Blogger Daughter In Law said...

I don't even have words. Just wishing you everything your heart desires.

 
At 1:00 PM, Blogger Katie (WannaBeMom) said...

Whew. It's such an issue we don't have-- sperm! However, we do talk about this issue when it fails, and we try to talk about how each of us feels guilty about it when it doesn't go. I think it seems like Mr. DD is not hearing the comments the docs are making as a protection. It's too hard to think of IVF not working as "fault" and it could lead us all into a slippery slope. Ultimately it seems like the bruhaha ended someplace really productive, but the bruhahas themselves are not so fun no matter what the outcome.

 
At 1:14 PM, Anonymous Alexa said...

Oh dear. What a night you had. I have had similar conversations--nothing has been harder on my relationship than infertility/miscarriage. Nothing.
I really hope that you end up with what you yearn for. I really hope that we *all* end up with what we yearn for.

 
At 1:50 PM, Blogger Cricket said...

Okay, I took a lot of time to get my thoughts right.

Just because you do not want to blame someone, it does not exclude the underlying reasons. It is illogical for a man to not want to seek and destroy reasons. Men want to fix.

This means one thing. He is in denial.

I will admit to a higher stress level in regard to your stress level for 2 reasons - we are both SIF and I lost my marriage to IF backlash.

 

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