This is a Premium feature
To use this feature subscribe to Mumsnet Premium - get first access to new features see fewer ads, and support Mumsnet.Start using Mumsnet Premium
Fertility issues and step children(26 Posts)
I know it's not an AIBU and I am posting for traffic, apologies! But I feel so alone and I wanted to reach as many as possible to see if anyone has been through this?
I have a condition which causes recurrent miscarriage. So far I've had over 10 and I'm really struggling after the last one where we got the furthest we ever had and thought everything was going to be okay finally.
I've been going to counselling (well I was before lockdown, I'm desperate to go back ) and one of the biggest triggers for my anxiety/depression is the fact that my husband already has children.
I absolutely love his kids, they are really fun to be around we have a good relationship but I am so desperate for my own, I can't explain how much and it's really really hard to play happy families when I know they aren't really my children and I don't share that with DH.
It's had me at the point of considering leaving. Even though I love them all, we have such a lovely marriage, he is so so supportive and caring. I was in a physically and emotionally abusive long term relationship before him and I never imagined I could find someone who made me so happy but this is infecting all of my thoughts. I wonder if I'd be calmer and less sad with someone who didn't have/want children, I wonder if maybe I could allow myself to forget that way and to focus on other things. I don't know if that makes sense?
I feel so desperately alone. My husband is there for me but he isn't going through what I am in the same way, he isn't facing childlessness. I have honestly never felt so isolated in all of my life. I don't have one single person who just gets it.
I'm not sure how to carry on like this. I just want to know if anyone understands?
I get it. And when I say I get it I mean it because we are in the same situation. I'm 22 and have been ttc for almost 2 years with no success or whatsoever , I have tried various medications to get pregnant but every month I get a bfn I feel even more depressed. I cry almost everyday cuz I ask myself why is these happening to me . I am young and active I thought it would be easy. At the point where I'm in a perfect and healthy marriage then these happens. And nobody seems to understand. These infertility journey has had me going mad. And everyone keeps saying oh it will happen just keep on praying. DH keeps saying I'm still going to stay whatever that happens. But the thought of childlessness scares me too
I'm sorry. I suffer from recurrent miscarriage too and that's bad enough. Ten miscarriages is horrendous, especially if your husband already has kids. What is your underlying condition, if you don't mind saying?
Hi there. Just wanted to reply to say I totally get where you are coming from. In a slightly similar situation - my DH has children from a previous marriage. We have been undergoing fertility treatment for 2.5 years now. Recently got pregnant in March via treatment only to suffer a very early loss. Long before this early miscarriage I expressed similar feelings to yourself - that I loved him but felt that ultimately if we had to accept that a child wasn't to be - I felt I would need to leave him. Sometimes I wondered if I should never have been this honest as he really struggled with what he felt was me putting a 'shelf life' on our marriage. But over time he has understood where I am coming from. That it's like rubbing salt in the wound. His ex is a poisonous nasty piece of work, and although I've been strong at not letting her get to me (there have been many years of being as obstructive as she can be to my DH as a father with a smattering a being horrid to me) it's the idea of facing childlessness whilst having to deal with her relentless selfishness. I get on with my step children and do a lot with/for them. It's not like I try to fill her place, as I don't want to! I know that sounds ruthless but I just don't. I'm not their mum. I'm happy to be there for them but it's not the same. Often I feel like she is happy for me to do things really she should be jumping at the chance too, but doesn't as it's hard work or costs money. So I fill in as it's just not my way to let them not have a well rounded weekend/school holiday. Doing those things I find difficult especially when in the middle of fertility treatment or after a failed treatment. Yet on the flip side she will make other things as difficult and all about her as she can, at the detriment to my husbands relationship and involvement with his children.
There's times where I feel that negotiating fertility treatment (and whatever the ultimate outcome may be) would be so much easier if there wasn't this blended family thing going on. I struggle with feeling that I am selfish to feel this way. But juggling all the medication, injections appointments and hiding the utter devastation on both our faces each time we suffer a loss... it's so hard to do when there are kids around and life needs to go on. I understand people experiencing secondary infertility have the same issue, but they at least have l that miracle to be thankful for despite it still hurting the same as it does for us. I feel I have nothing at times.
I've gone on and I apologise but I hoped that sharing a bit about my experience may help you - that I feel exactly the same as you!! As your post resonated so much with me because it's the first post I've ever seen from someone in a similar situation feeling similar sort of thoughts xx for quite a while I felt the way you described all the time. Recently I've had periods of feeling a bit more positive about things. But I go up and down.
I'm thinking of you. Experiencing what you have is devastating for any woman and couple... but I do echo what you feel... that it feels harder when played out in the shadow of someone else's family and children xxxxxxx
I have a balanced translocation and am currently waiting for IVF with PGD.
I can't allow myself to believe it'll happen though. I really can't ever picture or imagine it working out. I feel like in my gut I know that it won't because nothing has gone right so far. My counsellor says that's the anxiety talking and I can't possibly know but I feel like I do. Sometimes I wonder why I'm even bothering trying.
I'm sorry you're going through this too, both of you I just wish I had someone, just one person, who knew and who I believed when they said they understand.
Infertility is such a lonely place. I could hardly bear to be around pregnant friends when I was TTC and going through treatment. I split the world into people who had kids and those who didn’t and felt different to everyone who had them.
It must be so hard for you being reminded of this constantly with your husband and step kids. I hope the counselling is helping. Your feelings are completely normal.
The infertility boards are a good place for support.
Wow, yeah I mean on the one hand it's good that you know what the problem is. (Mine are unexplained.) But on the other hand the only solution is IVF, which really sucks. I'm so sorry. I really hope you get some good embryos after PGS. 🤞
flowergirl2020 thank you so much for your post. I'm so sorry you're feeling the same way but it really makes me feel so much less alone knowing I'm not the only person feeling this way.
Like you I feel like I just couldn't stay if it never worked out. I feel like I'd look at his kids and spend my life thinking what if.
I suffered with recurrent miscarriages after having two healthy children and just couldn't understand it at all and had one quite late miscarriage and had to be induced and give birth, it was awful. Bit after I seen a consultant who told me to take aspirin every day next time I got pregnant and it worked and I noe have my little rainbow baby my third child when I never thought I would be able to have another. Maybe you could try this? Hope it works out for you
I'm so sorry OP. I've not been in your position but I have had fertility treatment.
Being honest, personally I don't think I could stay with someone who had kids if I couldn't have my own. There would have to be an upside to not having kids for me, eg being able to travel or live abroad or in a cool but unkid friendly place etc.
I think I'd have to be with someone who could carve that life out with me and we were in solidarity with that. And I couldn't deal with the constant reminder of his kids, as you say it can never be the same for him.
I think you have to try and gain a sense of control over the situation, would it help to work out where the end of the road is for you, where and when you'd stop? And what would life look like beyond that?
I don't know whether the above helps or not, but I think it helps to think it is your life, and you have to live it in a way that makes you happy, with the cards that you are dealt
I met my DH when I was 21 and his son was 2. I love being a stepmum, so much more than I thought I would and I was devastated when we found out my husband couldn't have more children when I was 25. So I really do get it!
We decided against fertility treatment and adopted a beautiful little boy shortly after. He is the absolutely light of my life.
I feel like in my gut I know that it won't because nothing has gone right so far. My counsellor says that's the anxiety talking and I can't possibly know but I feel like I do
It really is the anxiety talking. My first baby died 2 hours after he was born and i had 3 miscarriges after him before I fell pregnant with my DD.
Every single pregnancy i have had since my first my gut has told me the baby will die ( Been pregnant 9 times, have 3 children but only 2 are alive.
Anxiety overrules gut feelings. It feels like you know but you dont, anxiety is very convincing.
You dont mention your age ( unless I have missed it ) is time on your side?
@Rumpusinthejungle did you find out why he can't? We are in same position. DH has 4 kids but now has a zero sperm count, and we don't know why
You dont mention your age ( unless I have missed it ) is time on your side?
I'm mid 20s so yes it is I guess.
As a pp said I feel like I can't even distract myself with things like travelling, holidays etc because we have my DHs kids. So essentially I have all the ties of parenthood but none of the positives.
It's hard to convince myself that it is the anxiety. I feel more like it's my gut preparing me for the fact it'll never happen.
I'm just so sad.
I feel like I am just going through the motions, doctors, IVF etc so I can say I tried but I know in my heart it'll just never happen for me. My head will not allow me to think positively, I've thought positively before and here I am 10 miscarriages later no further.
You have my sympathies. I have 2 SC and DH and I didn't find it easy to have a child. I had 2 MC's.
I had already decided that if we couldn't have a child,I wouldn't have been able to stay with him. The SC were and are, lovely, but it's not the same as the feelings and return of love I have from my own child. I was lucky, we got DD after trying for the best part of 2 years. Time was not on my side as I was early 30's when we started.
Would you consider surrogacy? I can't imagine the heartbreak of all those miscarriages. I think if you love your husband and his children then don't leave but maybe make sure you have some counselling too. Wishing you all the luck in the world for your happy ever after 💓
Surrogacy wouldn't work, it's my eggs that are the problem, I can carry a pregnancy I just need a genetically viable egg
@OhFuckityFuckFuck ah ok. Egg donor a no no too then . I can't imagine the heartbreak I really can't x
Surely if the eggs are the problem then donor eggs might actually work?
Still a horrible situation to be in though OP, my heart goes out to you.
Do you have a sister or even a cousin who might donate healthy eggs? That way you could have a child genetically related to you and your DH but without the translocation. I do understand a bit, as we had genetic counselling after four losses, but our problem turned out to be immunological.
Thinking positive is one of the empty but well-intentioned things people say without thinking. It suggests that you are to blame for losses because you allowed negative thoughts into your mind. Not true and not helpful!
I had an extremely anxious but successful twin pregnancy during which I anticipated disaster a dozen times a day. I simply could not see how my body could possibly grow two babies at once when it had repeatedly failed to hold onto one. I didn't trust it and I didn't believe it until I held my two perfect babies.
Don't waste any precious time or emotional energy trying to force yourself to think positive or worrying about not being able to - it won't affect any future outcome either way. People used to tell me to take things a day at a time: I found that far too demanding. I only coped by splitting each day into 6 hour chunks and never looking further ahead than 6am, 12 noon, 6pm or midnight, whichever was next.
Think about it: if anxiety ended pregnancies, nobody would ever have an unwanted child and there would be no need for terminations except for medical reasons, would there?
@NearlyGranny, what was the reason for your losses, if you don't mind sharing?
One ectopic that threatened my life to start with, after years of treatment and surgery for endometriosis; one 'successful' IVF pregnancy with a heartbeat at 8 weeks followed by spontaneous abortion 4 weeks later, one v. early loss, just after a bfp test and one 'missed abortion' empty sac. 😕 If it could go wrong, it did go wrong.
We got signed up to a study and had immunotherapy to teach my body to recognise DH's genetic material and not reject it. The study results were inconclusive in the end, but something worked for us! It's all a long time ago now but you never forget. It's just under the surface and anyone else's story brings it right back.
I remember shutting myself in the loo to cry in private after one disastrous scan and a nurse at the door asking "Are you alright?" Of course I'm not!
People mean well but they speak daggers when you're raw.
Hello @NearlyGranny. Sorry I've only just seen your reply. It sounds like you had terrible bad luck. I'm glad it worked out for you in the end.
It was an unbelievable run of bad luck, but it did end in great and ongoing joy, thank you!
But you never, ever forget how it feels...
Join the discussion
Registering is free, quick, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Get started »
Please login first.