What Not To Say

Well friends, the prospects for this month’s Bean are looking dim. The end of this month’s TWW had brought us the same old results…Big Fat Negative. Heavy sigh.

I don’t really have time to grieve because we have so many things to do to get ready for the next cycle. We are planning to move forward with the KD, barring any unforeseen legal or medical snafus.

In honor of today’s big fat negative, I’ve put together a little primer on what not to say to someone who is struggling to conceive or adopt the child she or he longs to parent.

You Just Need to Relax!

We would love nothing more than to “just relax.” However, couples with infertility, especially couples using ART, really cannot relax between all the tests, medications, injections, phone calls, appointments, charting, and planning. Lesbian couples have the added burden of securing a sperm source every month, and making sure that source arrives/is produced in time for the very short window of fertility. We have to plan every step very carefully, and create a veritable laboratory in our own home. It’s the antithesis of relaxing. It’s hard work. But when mistakes are costly and the legal implications complex, it’s not time to relax. It’s time to woman up.

Have You Ever Thought About Adopting?

I will pay you $50 if you meet a couple struggling to conceive who has not thought about adopting. (R, however, may prevent me from paying you. She does not appreciate it when I gamble.) Yes, we’ve thought about adopting. Unfortunately, it is very expensive (unpredictably so) to complete a private adoption in the United States, and we have yet to find an agency that will allow us to adopt internationally. Most every country with children available for inter-country adoption bars gays and lesbians from applying to be adoptive parents. We could adopt from foster care, but that comes with significant legal and emotional risk. It’s an option that is on the table, but we don’t feel quite ready to accept the risk of bonding with a child and then having to return him or her to the birth family, which is a very real possibility.

Everything Happens for the Best (or any variation thereof)

No, it doesn’t. This is a really easy platitude for Americans to utter, but it’s so…wrong. A quick perusal of the New York Times will confirm my point.

OMG I’m Pregnant! It was Totally an Accident!

I think this goes without saying, but if your friends are working hard to conceive or adopt, don’t tell them about your ‘oops’ moment. It’s really hard for us to say something socially acceptable in response. So, for our sanity, please just tell us the happy news and spare us the part about how it was completely unplanned or unwanted.

Enjoy it While You Can!

I appreciate that people are trying to help me look on the bright side of things, and I admit I can often use a silver lining sighting. However, I am ready and willing and able to parent. I understand the sacrifices involved and I’m ready to tackle them. I would happily trade in my restful nights and merry-making for the joy and challenge of motherhood.

Those are my tips for the day, which thus far has been full of phone calls and emails and second-guessing ourselves. But I’m gonna take a page from Florence’s book, and Shake it out! Want to join me?


2 responses to “What Not To Say

  1. Ditto Beth’s reply. When Landon was at the peak of his eosinophilia/food allergy symptoms he was crying his preschool during drop-off. One of his teachers, looks up at me with a pained expression and asks, “Have you thought about taking him to a doctor?”. I had to break one of my sarcasm bones to stop myself from harming this woman. By this point we had fired two pediatricians, 3 allergists and finally found a decent GI. People say goofy crap.
    So I send you love, support and hope. Happy Holidays you two gorgeous, brilliant women!

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