IVF & Our Story - Part 1



All you can really do in life is keep trying. 
There are times in your life when you’ll fail, for sure. 
It happens to all of us. Failing isn’t the important thing.
What’s important is that you just keep trying. 
As long as you never give up, then everything will work out for the best.
You should always do your best no matter what. 
It may seem like it’s a never ending battle sometimes.
It feels that way for me a lot of times.

Unknown author



This has to be the hardest thing I have ever tried to write. I feel this because when I write blogs I talk to you as if I am a friend if that makes sense, I write the way I actually talk. This time however I don't feel I can talk to you like that, this time it is different, this time I am talking about something only I have truly been able to open up to Joanne about and vice versa. This is my perspective on what IVF is, how it affects you, your partner and the bond between you both. Joanne has encouraged me time and time again to open up about my side to IVF. Joanne has her story which cannot be told by me, she does have her outlets though to help her mind, forums, Facebook groups, friends and always forever myself. The thing is though there is not many men out there talking about this, none at least that I know of which makes me feel even more nervous writing about a subject that people would believe is a woman's heart ache but it is far more than that. It is a heart ache for both the woman and the man as their relationship becomes one big yearning ball of heartache and despair. In my first piece I am going to tell you how we got here and be as frank as possible. Before I go any further, this piece has been vetted by Joanne and encouraged, I don't even think I can grasp how I am actually posting this.





In May 2014 we got married, I figure I should start at the beginning. Up till our wedding, I don't think we ever spoke about kids in any great detail bar the usual "when we have kids one day", note I said when, no one ever thinks they can't have kids. There was always then the heated discussion about baby names, Joanne would always say a name and I would veto it and she would do the same to me. I always wanted if we had a boy to call it after myself, I know that sounds selfish but it is because in my family, my name has a history. Not many people say they like their name, I love my name, I am the 8th Willem De Korte in a row, the first boy and I have traced it back as far as 1780, every first born boy has been named Willem. Naturally soon as you are married and I am sure you have read this a thousand times but "When are ye having kids lads", "Better change the car now for a nice family one" the list goes on, but it is only natural. Society demands it of you once you are married, even in the Catholic marriage course, the main goal is for you to procreate post marriage. We decided on honeymoon to enjoy a few months first before we even thought about trying for a baby, we thought no rush like. We stuck by our word, we held out 3 months before giving it a go. I am sure you all know by now how it all happens the birds and bees etc. so no need for the biology lesson. We started in August 2014, we thought we are going be pregnant by the end of the month and the rollercoaster will begin. I picked up the pregnancy tests in anticipation you know the really early ones, First Response ones I think they are called. 3 days out before Joanne's time of the month, we tested, negative.... 2 days out we tested, negative.... 1 day out..negative. Aunt flow rode on in to town and the journey was over. Both of us thought the same, it is the first time trying, was slim chance anyway, will get back to trying next month.

Each month went by September, October, November, December, each single month as torturous as the last. Me looking at Joanne feeling shit for her, me bottling it up how shit I feel that this is not working, Joanne looking at me feeling shit for me, Joanne feeling shit about the whole thing. Those first 5 months turned very quickly from this is great trying to why has nothing happened yet? January 2015 hit me like a bang, I got sick, I suffered a mild TIA stroke with no real explanation and thankfully no lasting effects on my life, not even now. I may have said it before in a previous post I had a stroke back in March 2010 because of a heart defect which was ultimately fixed. After being sick in the January we had to pause the trying for a baby for a few weeks but come March we were back trying again. This time with a renewed sense of optimism, that is the thing about trying and later on IVF you always have to remain optimistic as best you can. We thought this time we would try something else we had not done before and buy an ovulation kit. These allow the woman to see exactly when they are about to ovulate which is the optimum time to try for a baby. The kit added more heartache, each month for nearly 3 months, trying to catch the little egg when it was released. We never got it right, it was now May 2015 and we decided three things, no more ovulation kits, no more pregnancy tests and when we came back from our holidays in Spain we would finally go to a fertility clinic. We said lets try up till August, because that would have been a year of trying. August came and we still couldn't crack it. It took some serious consideration to go for help, we consulted with our GP and she gave us a referral for a fertility clinic. 


August 2015 was the beginning of a journey of many tears, excitement, hope and severe disappointment.

To be continued next week, feel free to ask me any questions after my next post. The next one will be quite detailed.

Will

Comments

  1. So brave to publicly talk about this. This is more common than people think. I admire you both for putting your story out there. As a wise lady once said to me "what is for you won't pass you". I really hope 2017 brings you everything you dream of & deserve x

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    1. I hear that quote alot, it's Joanne's fave one hehe. Thank you so much Hayley :D

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  2. Well done Will. It took us 5 long hard heartbreaking years, but we did it. Wishing you and Joanne the very best of luck.

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    1. Fair bloody play Grace, it must be all the sweeter when it finally just works. Thank you for the kind words and support

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  3. Hi will , we used to be neighbours I'm Cathy hi to you and just to let you both know myself and my husband have been doing the rollercoaster of fertility for 5yrs now and took a break the last couple of mths . It is the hardest road but know that you even speaking about this is amazing love and support will get us all there I've sworn many times we should give up but it's determination that keeps us going. Human nature can be an ass but we hope it hands us what we want just when we need it and any help along the way as it's actual torture �� Look forward to your next blog

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    1. Hi also to you Cathy, I won't ask where we were neighbours just to stay private, but I know two Cathys from my home. 5 years is a crazy long ride, we are 2.5 years at it, it is soul destroying and torture, it is just so hard though to speak to people about it all, as you dont know if they will get it or wont want to know. I think though however it has helped more than ever galvanise both me and Joanne as a couple.

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    2. I couldn't agree more makes me love my husband more than I thought possible . Friends are great and family but unless you've stepped inside it , experienced it,it is hard to explain. Know that so many out there are afraid to reach out and this is the first blog I've read from a man so go you and we will be sending yee both some amazing things to come in 2017 and an easier road for us all ����

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  4. This is like reading our own story. We married on Oct 14 and have been trying since. Just started with NeoFertility before we go down the daunting IVF road. Thank you for telling your story and good luck.

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    1. I just hope it can help other people to see others going through it. Best of luck Joanne!

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  5. Me heart breaks for couples going through this. I've not personally experienced it but I can imagine and even at that I wouldn't be anywhere near how it feels for the couple. Well done on speaking up and true as you say you never hear the man's perspective on these, sometimes they fall into the background and it's forgotten they too have to go through the pain and heartbreak. Best of luck to you both on this journey. X

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    1. Thank you Kacy, I just hope posts like this can help others also.

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  6. Will this piece is worded so beautifully. I know the heart break. And everyone around you getting pregnant. Your courage and honesty will be a great support to others. Keep the faith. You are a great duo who's love and strength will get you through together. It took us almost 5 years. We have 2 boys. I'll keep you in my prayers. Good luck and use this to help you through. It is therapeutic. Good luck

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    1. Thank you very much Maura and thank you for reading :)

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  7. I remember feeling as though I'd joined a club , but when sitting in the I.V.F. offices , I felt it was a club that definitely was not voluntary. During the 1st first embryo transfer I recall a nurse saying "for some people it works the first time, for others it works the last time" & I prayed please please don't be the "last" time for us. Our journey did last 8 years, with allot of heartache, pain, prayer & hope we achieved our goal. That was 16 years ago, however the memory is still fresh & clear. I think it is important to accept that it is also OK to grieve, get angry & frustrated separately as well as together when going through IVF. Also ask for help (yes marriage counselling)when the strain gets to be to much on your marriage. Always do your best to never give up hope!

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    1. Thank you for posting it certainly echoes true alot you have said. Thanks for reading :)

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  8. My heart goes out to you both Will I've followed you's for a while now through the lovely Karen and you's are an amazing couple. I really hope things go well for you's. My aunt went through the same heartache for a good few years then she has 4 babies in a row. Never give up hope. Love Jes

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    1. Thanks for the post Jes, really appreciate the kind words

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  9. Thank you so much for sharing this. Myself and my husband are going through the same thing for the last 5 years. People forget that this is a man's journey, heartache, hope and despair just as much as it is the woman's. Not intentionally or in a bad way, it's just the woman becomes the focus. I admire your honesty and courage in posting this, it's certainly not an easy thing to do. I hope everything works out for you both x

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    1. Such a bumpy road, hope everything works out for you too :) thanks for reading and posting.

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  10. Hi Will. Thanks for posting this. I hope a brief version of Our story can help others and maybe you. I've searched the Internet a few times looking for stories from other guys like myself who've been on this rollacoaster.Myself and my other half started our journey a little over 4 years ago. As a couple it's the hardest time you will probably ever have.We like most other couples never imagined we would have trouble conceiving but after a year of trying said we would go have some investigations done. My sperm was OK but my partner had blocked fallopian tubes. So she had them flushed out and we tried again for a while, nothing happened. We were both 34 and from talking to doctors we knew the clock was ticking so after finding out one was blocked again she had it removed under our specialists recommendation. We then tried 3 courses TSI but had no succsess. Because of our age we went straight to IVF. We had 2 failed cycles and had a positive pregnancy test on the 3rd try. We were ecstatic. We were devastated 2 months later to find out our baby had no heart beat.
    After some time and grieving we decided we were going to try one last time and throw everything at it. Every minute of every day we were focused on our goal of having a baby. After a lot of research we done everything physically possible. We both went on a wheat,sugar,dairy and alcohol free diet for 6 months leading up to our last go. We done Chinese herbs,travelled to Wexford for Accupuncture twice a month(we live in dublin),my partner done ancient maya massage,she used Castor packs on her stomach,I used ice packs on testes every night as keeping semen cool is advised,we done green juices every day,she took Hemp protein,we used natural shower gels and deodrants,she done courses of Intralipids,she listened to zeta West fertility meditation cds every night. As i say We done everything we thought possible,some things might sound silly but what's the harm in trying when you want something so bad. We decided after hearing really good reports that lister clinic in London was going to be the place for our last go. The travelling over and organising was stressful and hard going but we now have an amazing little baby girl who was born in November just gone. I got so emotional today reading your story it brought it all back. But you know what I'd do it all again. Every second of hardship and pain is worth it. My advice to you Will and anyone going through this is be there for each other,look forward and never give up hope. We never thought it was going to happen for us but it did in the end.Again thanks for sharing your story and I look forward to hearing about the rest of your journey,I. Sincerely wish you all the luck in the world .

    Dave

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    1. Thank you Dave, flipping great comment. Thanks for sharing your story, it is certainly refreshing to hear that it works even after so many ups and downs, I guess it may just happen when the time is right if that makes sense, we will forever remain positive and hopeful. I am delighted there are couple like you out there and sharing these stories too, so thank you Dave. Will

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