Can We Talk About Infertility?

If misery loves company, why do we insist on isolating ourselves when we need support the most? One woman with the courage to go public with a private loss wrote this in a Newsweek editorial:

“The doctor said the test had indicated an unviable pregnancy. I started talking to other pregnant women (who seemed to be all around me) and learned what no one tells you until devastation has set in: up to 25% of pregnancies end in miscarriage.

People keep too mum about private tragedies such as this. True, miscarriages are not catastrophic, especially in terms of sheer commonality, but it can tear away a piece of you that you didn’t know was there.  We need to talk to each other, rather than suffer surrounded by silent sisters.”

She’s right. We need to talk to each other. Suffering in silence only compounds the sense of isolation we already feel in the midst of infertility.

So, why don’t we talk? Why don’t we tell each other, “I lost a pregnancy” or “I lost a child”? The tidal wave of grief is already washing over us. The only way to get a lifeline is to call for help.

What’s stopping us?

Pride is what silenced me.  I hated to admit I was failing at something so many other women seemed to accomplish effortlessly.  Seemed being the key word.  If the Newsweek writer is to be believed, there were miscarriages going on all around me.  But no one talked about it.  Those silent sisters kept their secrets and I foolishly believed that I was alone in my misery.  That I was the only one struggling to catch up with everyone else’s instant gratification.

Now, consider this:  “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble” [James 4:6].

Ouch.

My pride was rooted in a desire for self-reliance and control.  I was raised to consider self-reliance a virtue…an admirable quality often seen in leaders… the mark of a “can do” go-getter.  And control as the holy grail.  But God doesn’t see it that way.  He sees arrogant self-centeredness that refuses to make room for Him.  Or worse, an entitlement attitude that puts me on the throne and Him at my beck and call (in the form of “I want/I need” prayer).

“God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”

Thank goodness I finally set my pride aside and began to share my struggle.  Grace came from all around me, in the form of stories shared by women who’d also kept their struggles secret.  All of us had bought into the lie that we alone were failing to conceive.  We alone kept miscarrying.  Meanwhile, “we” were everywhere.

Don’t make my mistake.  Share your story.  There’s a silent sister out there suffering, and she needs to hear it.

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Find more resources and cause for hope at PregnantWithHope.com [tweetmeme source=”pregnantwhope” only_single=false]

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Filed under Bystanders, Humility, Speaking Up

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