In a dilemma..do i give up and give in to menopause or do i try to have a baby ?

(15 Posts)
erilou38 Fri 25-Oct-13 18:57:22

So i'm 38 and been trying to conceive for 15 months. I have children whom i conceived very quickly and easily, the youngest 7 years ago. My husband who is 12 years younger than me has no children of his own. He's a brilliant Stepdad though. A year ago i was advised by my doctor to go on HRT as i had an elevated FSH level of 20 which the doctor said was borderline menopausal. I ignored her advice as i was in the early months of trying for a baby. Here we are 15 months later and still not conceived. My most recent FSH level was 11.2 which the nurse at the NHS infertility clinic said was 'reasonable'. The nurse doesn't seem to think i'm in early menopause. She says it's likely a hormone imbalance and because of that it will take me longer to fall pregnant. I saw another doctor a few weeks ago who thinks i'm in Perimenopause, the transition stage to menopause. He advised HRT. For the past couple of years i have been having menopausal symptoms, occasional hot flashes at nighttime, palpitations, mood swings, anxiety and vaginal dryness. I'm currently using vaginal HRT cream for the dryness, which is helping. Anyway, back to the infertility clinic. I should be having an HSG on my next cycle to check my tubes are not blocked. Hope my period comes on time as the last 18 months they have been irregular, (another menopausal symptom). After the HSG i have an appointment at the end of November at the clinic to have a scan and possibly be given Clomid which the nurse said i could have as long as my FSH wasn't above 15. I know i haven't long to wait for the appointment now but i just keep thinking, would i be better off to just forget trying to have a baby and just accept menopause and start HRT and move on with life and try to be happy. Or do i pursue the baby idea, as i would so dearly love one. Am i really likely to conceive with Clomid while in perimenopause or am i just wasting my time. I'm so very torn. Clomid is the only treatment i would be given on the NHS as i already have children so if it doesn't work i will have to quit anyway. I can't afford to go private. I'm so lucky to have been blessed with children but i would so love to give my husband a child of his own. All this stress though is affecting my health and wellbeing. I just don't know which way to turn. My husband says he isn't bothered about having a baby, but then being just 26 he would say that. What happens in a few years time if he decides he really wants a child and then dumps me for a younger woman who is fertile. i'm sick with fear. I have my own health to consider, i could be putting my health in later years at risk by not starting HRT now. Or maybe i shall just give the Clomid a go in the next couple of months and if i don't conceive, start HRT in the New Year. So want a baby and just so sad. Wish i could just get pregnant naturally and easily like i did before. Just had to have a vent on here as i'm a messed-up Mummy wishing to be a mummy-to-be once more but getting caught out early by that bitch called menofuckingpause!

Misfitless Fri 25-Oct-13 20:08:45

Well erilou, you sound a lot more clued up on all this menopause business that I do - I know almost nothing about the different stages but I'm pretty sure I started the menopause about two and a half years ago. I did go to the nurse at the GPs a few months back, and she made me an appointment to get a blood test, but I never got round to going back, so it hasn't been officially confirmed.

I too am really broody at the minute, but I try to rationalise it and for me, I keep telling myself that my body is hard wired into making me want another baby before it's too late, but that that doesn't mean its necessarily a good idea!

Misfitless Fri 25-Oct-13 20:18:31

Another thing I keep telling myself is that going through the early stages of the menopause and being pregnant would be hell, and surely detrimental to my health, state of mind, relationship with DH and to our 4DCs. Who wants a knackered, stroppy and tearful wife or mummy? Also, after 9 months I'd have a beautiful new baby.....whilst going through the menopause!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I think I'd have some sort of breakdown!
I'm finding going through the menopause with pre-school age child tough enough, I can't imagine how how anyone could cope with a newborn.

Misfitless Fri 25-Oct-13 20:23:25

That's just me - maybe someone on here has survived it and come out smelling of roses. Hope it all works out for you whatever you decide.

I was only talking to my DH about this today - how only a generation or two ago, in most cases, when women hit the menopause as their children were approaching their twenties, now, the menopause often clashes with toddler tantrums, and our DCs starting school!
Good luck!

erilou38 Fri 25-Oct-13 20:36:28

I keep thinking all of those things. I feel awful these days, moody, tearful and tired all the time. Really it would be mad to have a baby while on the menopause and like you said it would be so tough with a newborn and other young children to look after. Deep down i just don't think that i would cope. i think, as you say, our biological clock is kicking in hard because our time is up. It's our bodies natural urge i suppose to make us so broody when we know time has run out. Really, it wouldn't be fair on my other children to have another baby. I guess they would be a little bit left out with all my time and energy being spent on the baby. I just keep thinking that one day my husband will really want his own baby also he insists that he won't. He has told me to forget having a baby and concentrate on getting myself sorted out. I just wish i had of frozen my eggs a few years ago when i was super-fertile! Thank you for your reply, it has helped me to be a bit more rational. I think the sensible idea is to forget about a baby, it wasn't as if i was deprived of having children. I think i have to bite the bullet, go back to the doctor and get the HRT. How old are you by the way ? x

hootintootin Fri 25-Oct-13 20:39:23

Erilou, I went through fertility treatment and now have my DD. It can be a long process especially if you're panicking about age all the way through it. Id say just get on with whatever options you can afford as soon as they are offered to you. It's also hard dealing with the idea that life may not look like you expected if the treatment doesn't work. I found that having a really positive back up plan helped a lot. It sounds like you worry more about your husband s back up plan then your own. For what it's worth and sweeping generalisation I don't think men are deep down as driven as we are too have our own children. I think they, sweeping generalisation again, have deeper instincts towards us andhaving a happy marriage than being a father.

erilou38 Fri 25-Oct-13 20:40:38

Yes, i had a similar conversation with my husband a few weeks ago. I always imagined my kids would be late teens, 20s before i was in menopause. It's very sad that it seems to be happening much more to younger women these days. It's not meant to happen when you have a toddler and small children!

Pinkpinot Fri 25-Oct-13 20:44:53

An elevated fsh doesn't mean you're not ovulating. And the fact it's gone down is hopeful
There are other tests. Amh for one
38 is v young, I'd get other tests
But I'm 43 and desperate!

Misfitless Fri 25-Oct-13 20:47:13

Me too - your post has made me realise that I need to go the GP and see what help is available.
I've just turned 39.
Some mornings I feel so anxious just leaving the house! I never imagined it could be so bad.

erilou38 Fri 25-Oct-13 20:47:19

Thank you Hootintootin. So pleased for you that you had your DD through fertility treatment. My husband is a great Stepdad and he says he loves my children like his own. One of his sayings is "It takes any dick to make a baby but it takes a real man to raise a child!"

erilou38 Fri 25-Oct-13 21:01:07

It's like menopause has turned me into a completely different person. It's like i'm no longer 'me'. My body is changing inside and out and my mind is a mess. I have little confidence and have anxiety and panic attacks all the time. I never imagined that menopause was going to be as horrible as this. Go back to your doctor Misfitless and ask for Hormone blood tests, in particular, a cycle day 3 FSH. This will give you a good indicator as to if you are in menopause or not x

erilou38 Fri 25-Oct-13 21:07:56

Pinkpinot. i'm not ovulating, at least not regularly, as a day 21 progesterone test has confirmed that. Iv'e had 2 or 3 in the past year and they say i'm not ovulating. I thought about an AMH but they can only be done private and they cost around £180 and we can't afford that. Do you suspect you are in menopause too ?

hootintootin Fri 25-Oct-13 21:19:48

Thanks. It sounds like you're going through a hard time . is menopause the only explanation for your symptoms?

Pinkpinot Fri 25-Oct-13 21:44:05

I'm still ovulating, but amh was really bad. no symptoms except for a bit more hormonal every month, but a lot of stresses too.

erilou38 Fri 25-Oct-13 22:30:15

Hootintootin. Iv'e been under a lot of stress the last few years. Things were particularly nasty when i split from the children's father 4 years ago. I don't think i have ever really recovered emotionally. I noticed menopausal-type symptoms starting a few months after the split. Perhaps what i'm going through isn't menopause at all. It could indeed be stress. My doctor said that extreme stress can have an effect on the pituatry gland in the brain and this can in turn affect the sex hormones and ovulation. She said maybe my body 'thinks' it's in menopause, if that makes sense.

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