Absolute rage at needing IVF

(18 Posts)
thebestlife Wed 17-Apr-19 23:08:49

My DH has had 2 children via IVF with his first wife. After 7 years of TTC and unexplained infertility we probably need to go down that path as well. He has done this before and "knows it all" and has no fear or anxiety around the process. He also doesn't really see it as invasive. He also has demons from his experience and expects to be totally bullied and excluded.

I feel so vulnerable with the whole process and get mad. He thinks that a woman should be willing to do ANYTHING to conceive. I don't. Im so angry at this societal belief. I had a HSG and it took me 2 years to recover emotionally from the trauma of the extreme unmedicated pain and callous dr. They say that implantation is "uncomfortable" like a Pap smear. They also said that about the HSG.

I am so angry and fearful.
Is IVF as bloody awful as I think it will be?
Any tips on how to help hubby be the support I need?

OP’s posts: |
physicskate Thu 18-Apr-19 04:22:59

Ivf was awful. Not the worst thing that I've ever had to go through, but up there. It wasn't great physically, but I found the emotional side of things to be a huge headfuck. I felt quite a lot of pressure, despite having a pretty healthy sense that my first cycle was an 'experiment' to see how I responded to ivf.

Physically, the injections were ok. Some sting a bit, but we're over quickly. Egg collection was pretty awful for me. Three days of the worst period cramps I've ever had (which made them suspect ohss and then had to take more injections). Transfer was not good. I have/had some sort of bend in my cervix which meant a lot of elbow grease to get the catheter through to my uterus. It was very unpleasant and a bit painful for me.

But was it worth the physical and emotional shitshow? Yes. I have a one month old currently asleep on my boob.

Would I do another fresh cycle? Absolutely not. I won't go through another egg collection.

Would I have done a second fresh I'd cycle one hadn't worked? Possibly, but probably not.

Would I have a frozen cycle using our Frosties in the future? Yes, if it means the possibility of a sibling for my daughter and we decide to try for one (which is still very much up in the air).

Tell your dh exactly what you need from him, when you need it. I made mine go on an ivf detox with me. It helped me feel like he was doing something to help the success of our cycle. We talked a lot about feelings too (me more so than him, but that's just who we are as people).

Good luck with your decisions - they aren't easy ones!!

Lauren83 Thu 18-Apr-19 05:59:37

Sorry you find yourself in this position, we needed IVF due to me so I was full of guilt that I couldn't give DP a baby naturally. I had 5 cycles and didn't find it too bad, it was fine psychically but emotionally was harder as I had failed cycles, cancelled cycles and pregnancy loss and there's so much disappointment and chances for things to go wrong. Physically the worst pain I had was from a HSG, the egg collection and transfers were fine, we did eventually have success with donor eggs

Persipan Thu 18-Apr-19 06:27:40

For me:

- Injections are fine
- I sometimes have some side effects in terms of mood from the medications but generally not much physically
- Retrieval was fine, I felt a bit grotty later that day but nothing worse. (I've only had one retrieval because now I'm on to donor eggs, but I wouldn't have any worries about it.)
- Personally I hate, hate, hate embryo transfer but that's purely because you have to have a 'comfortably full' bladder for it and I have a very low tolerance for having any urine in my bladder at all. The procedure itself is really not painful at all and I promise the huge majority of people find it absolutely fine. (And I'm fine like one minute later, as soon as I go to the loo!)
- The two week wait is epically horrible because I symptom spot the whole time
- Overall I've never really found IVF to be as big a deal as the popular image of it would have you think it is.

None of this much matters, though. What matters is how you're feeling now, which you've described very clearly and well. I'm so sorry your husband isn't listening to how you're feeling.

My advice would be, before you start on any treatment, get some specialist counselling from a counsellor with expertise in fertility. Most fertility clinics offer this. Ideally this should also involve your husband too, for at least part of the time - it sounds like he actually has big anxieties and hangups about being ignored and excluded through the process which are preventing him from really understanding how you're feeling (and which it would be good to address, themselves).

Good luck, whatever you decide (and remember, you can decide not to have IVF, if ultimately you feel it's not for you).

ellesbellesxxx Thu 18-Apr-19 06:38:57

Sorry to hear you find yourself on this path 💐💐
The procedures I found ok although I was uncomfortable after egg collection. I took that whole week off to
Focus on ivf.
The down regging was where I struggled most with mood swings and hot sweats/imsomnia. I was v tearful during stimms.
The emotional side of things during the whole procedure was the worst... I was in tears, full
Of self doubt, terrified it wouldn’t work, terrified I was doing something wrong at each point. I had acupuncture which made me feel relaxed and being proactive.
Our round actually worked and we have almost two year old twins.

evaperonspoodle Thu 18-Apr-19 06:48:18

So sorry OP flowers but I don't believe society does have the expectation that a woman has to do anything in order to conceive, but your DH appears to. He does not sound like a great guy tbh and if you do go down this route (and it's fine if you don't want to) do not expect a lot of support from him, he is already making it all about him. I haven't gone through the process but my SIL did and it was an extreme roller coaster that sadly did not have a good ending and they very much needed to support each other.

flowers82 Thu 18-Apr-19 06:57:50

To be honest I felt great about doing it. Knowing that I had a chance of having a baby after 3yrs of unexplained infertility. No side effects or pain anywhere.
We were lucky the first time round and ended up with our first daughter. A year later we conceived naturally! And have our second daughter.
I would do it all again in a flash and am so grateful to be living in a time when technology and medicine can help us.
For me the hardest part about the ivf is the emotional side. Waiting to know if you have produced eggs, how many eggs, did they fertilise, did they divide well, can they implant any? Will you be pregnant. The worst thing of it al for me was the potential outcome of it not working. That's what makes IVF horrible and hard in my opinion. Good luck.

NoNoNoOohmaybe Thu 18-Apr-19 07:20:13

IVF was tough emotionally, and I definitely went through a period of grieving after they told us we needed it to conceive.

Physically it was fine. I went private so they sedated me for egg collection. No discomfort at all and I'm a total wuss about pain. I LOVED down regging. Honestly all my overthinking and anxiety disappeared, I felt like I could do anything. The progesterone jabs were a little ouchy but nothing significant.

The two week wait was a total headfuck and when my first round failed I was devastated. Through our clinic (NHS and paid privately) we had a session of counselling which really helped. On our second round we conceived twins.

I found the month after month of failing to conceive far worse than IVF.

EL2019 Thu 18-Apr-19 07:44:09

Having been through IVF (one cycle + 1 frozen, both unsuccessful) I couldn’t do it with someone who was so dismissive of what it involves. Not invasive - hah! It’s all consuming.

Funnily enough the injections were the “best” bit, in that I felt like I was doing something. The TWW was worse. I reacted badly to the progesterone you have to take.

Do you really want to go through pregnancy, childbirth and parenting with someone who is so dismissive of how unequal the load is? I get why you’re raging. He doesn’t have your back.

MrsC18 Thu 18-Apr-19 09:04:15

I've had 2 fresh cycles and 2 frozen, on short protocols for all of them so no down regging.

Although the injections aren't painful, they do sting and I suffer with horrible side effects within a 2 days of starting. I've never felt so tired and nauseous as I do during stims, it's such a relief to get to egg collection so I know I can get off that medication.

The egg collection itself I'm under sedation so don't feel any pain, it's just the terror of worrying if there are any eggs. The pain afterwards meant both times I took codeine 60mg, it's the most painful thing I've experienced in a while, but was just sore the day after with paracetamol managing it.

Like a PP, I HATE transfer! Needing a wee, but having to relax whilst they put the speculum in whilst having the nurse press on your abdomen with the ultrasound is just horrible.

The TWW is horrific. The medication makes you feel pregnant so it's hard to believe that you're not. The horror of seeing another negative test when you know embryos were put in there is so very sad.

I've never had a BFP from IVF so have done this 4 times for nothing. I get tearful when I go near my clinic. I hate being in that building.

This experience hasn't broken me, but I'm genuinely not sure how long I can carry on even if it means I never get my baby. I consider myself to be a strong person and if IVF has worked for me first time I believe I would also think this was all worth it but obviously where I'm stood now it really isn't.

My shining light in all of this is my husband though. He just quietly supports me in everything and I know 100% that he will do another round if it's what I want or he will plan an amazing holiday and never have kids if that's what I want. IVF is something we've faced together which is a good job as IVF has been a twat to me!

I think I've found him so supportive though because he actually just wants me to be okay - we're doing IVF because I want a baby, he's happy as we are so I genuinely feel no pressure from him at all and I know I can stop without upsetting him. How much have you talked about this process with him? Best of luck and sorry I'm so negative x

ChocolateGateaux84 Mon 22-Apr-19 17:35:54

Good god no. I have no idea what horror stories youve heard.

Im an IVF veteran, yes I've had a few uncomfortable moments. Having an endometrial scratch was pretty unpleasant. I also had OHSS which wasn't great but other than that the process isn't really 'painful' so to speak.
Yes it's a good lot of prodding and poking and be prepared to be intimately familiar with a room full of 6 medical professionals, but for me it was the only way to have a child and I just told myself it was all in a good cause.
Currently 16wks after my 7th attempt and I'm finding the symptoms of pregnancy such as tiredness and nausea very difficult. On the contrary generally during my years of ivf I felt physically great.

However the emotional side of ivf is another kettle of fish entirely. I had multiple failed attempts and am still coping with the fall out of it all.
I struggle daily with anxiety and depression and thats not really gone away despite finally having success

Best of luck whatever you decide xx

TimeforDuggee Mon 22-Apr-19 17:47:28

It's so different for every one. I do get what you mean, I felt very hard done by that others could conceive and we couldn't. Simultaneously I felt relieved and lucky to have the chance to have IVF. It's a mind fuck, but compared to the horror of years of TTC it was nothing.

Added to the mix was the revelation, after years of blaming myself, that it was in fact DH who was infertile. That was a shock but actually we both just took it in our stride and moved on. It was a lot easier for me to deal with than the self-hatred I had been feeling until that point.

I have 2 babies from ICSI and to be honest nowadays rarely give a thought to how they were conceived, can't even really remember much about it all (except the pain of OHSS that was quite nasty).

Good luck to you flowers

Blondeshavemorefun Mon 22-Apr-19 19:12:17

Ivf is hard. Emotionally physically mentally and financially - spent £27k

But I’m glad we did it

Took 5 attempts to get our only ever bfp and she is now 2

Tbh the first two cycles and egg collection were horrendous and painful

As was the hsg - and tbh they couldn’t insert high enough so ended up having a general

Ended up I had a Closed cervix and ended up with cervical dilation twice

The 3rd cycle was better as diff clinic and had the above cd

Maybe check /ask if yours cervix is the same

As the pain shouldn’t be that bad for a hsg

But all the pain was worth it to have W successful ivf

But we had 4 failed ivf and that’s bloody hard

Your husband needs to be more sympathetic !! Esp as been through ivf

Rumplestrumpet Mon 22-Apr-19 20:57:47

I'm sorry you're going through this, and just wish everyone could conceive naturally when they wanted. But sadly for many of us that wasn't possible.

Like some others, IVF itself wasn't as bad as the years TTC and not knowing what was going on. Month after month of trying, trying to get tests to find out what was going on, blaming myself and then feeling strange relief to discover it was my husband's problem, not mine.
IVF itself wasn't physically very difficult for me, although egg retrieval without sedation was bloody horrible and i wouldn't recommend that to anyone. The emotional roller coaster was the hardest but having DH by my side and truly ON my side mad it doable. We were a team and he kept me sane. He recognised all I was going through and that was important to me.

I'm a bit confused by your husband's assumption that he'll be bullied and excluded- by whom?! It sounds like you would be better prepared for IVF if the two of you could communicate better about it - i woulde certainly recommend looking into counselling to help you identify and work through issues - better to do it now than after you've started and it's all more emotionally charged.

Good luck whatever you decide . And remember that it's ok to have all the feelings you have.

StitchingMoss Mon 22-Apr-19 21:05:25

IVF wasn’t as bad as Clomid IME! As others have said, the physical side is not too bad, it’s the emotional side that’s incredibly hard.

My IVF baby is 12 now but I still find myself with the green eyed monster when I hear others have conceived naturally sad.

MuchTooTired Mon 22-Apr-19 21:18:20

Sorry you’re going through this 💐

Ivf was one of the hardest things I’ve been through, and I’ll never do a fresh cycle again. Physically it was uncomfortable, but the emotional aspect is mainly why I won’t. I ended up traumatised by the end of it, tremendously guilty when it worked, terrified, anxious and depressed during my pregnancy, and have pnd now.

Looking back now, it has pretty much faded, and my DTs are more than worth it. I’d recommend actually talking to your dp and anyone you feel comfortable with about anything and everything you’re concerned about, which isn’t advice I took - I hid it from everyone because I felt like a failure, and was ashamed of needing ivf. Have a plan and something to look forward to if it doesn’t work, but also prepare yourself for it working.

Sorry if my post comes across as negative, and good luck whichever way you decide 💐

Cutesbabasmummy Tue 23-Apr-19 07:49:27

I have a 4 year old conceived with a DE with treatment split between UK and Spain. None of the treatment hurt apart from the injections which stung a bit. My husband was by my side the whole time and fully involved, definitely not excluded. It sounds like they used a very unprofessional clinic before.

Teddybear45 Tue 23-Apr-19 15:29:53

IVF is hard. Really hard. That’s why you have really got to want to do anything to make it work. I basically gave up my life for 3 years (so far) to my consultant. I have had painful hsg’s, painful smears, painful fibroid removals, painful embryo transfers, painful ovaries after egg collection, pain during the course of implantation meds they give me. That’s on top of the mental pain of wanting a child and not getting one.

If you really aren’t prepared to go through anything in terms of IVF (and there is NOTHING wrong with his; not every woman will) then be upfront and don’t start it at all.

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