I am spending my week writing from home, and at the mercy of a AC repairman to fix my central air. This is all the more needed after this morning, because I'm fairly certain in the last 20 minutes my brain has caught fire, and the heat is radiating off of my head and into the house.
I admit that I am slow with the internet acronyms so I must have completely missed the official announcement, however, immediately following the National Infertility Awareness Week, it is apparently the Week of People Who Shouldn't Be Parents.
This morning I looked at my new online carnival known as Twitter (I'm @StupidStork ya'll, let's be friends!) and saw the retweet of an article on Huffington Post. I love me the Huffington Post! That is one of my everyday online rotations seeing as how yes, I like to know what serious issues are going on in the world at large but I also like to be up to date on whether Amanda Bynes has been committed yet. You can, like, totally tell that I love the Huffington Post because I even refer to it as the Huff Po. So, you know, there's your proof.
So I clicked on the article, read, and my brain exploded. I almost don't want to share this with you considering that since I read it, there is so much kinetic energy built up in my fists that they will not be satisfied until they quite literally hunt down this man and make contact with his balls.
So, you know, read keeping that warning in mind. It is the ramblings of a man whose wife is pregnant with twins, and he is now furious.
When I met my husband we pretty much instantly got serious with one another (completely out of character for me) and moved in with each other two weeks after we first met. When we started having the future-marriage-baby conversations, he definitely wanted kids, but he always pictured just having one because he'd be gunshy about a second pregnancy. I kind of wanted two. So began the ongoing musing that somehow we'd end up with twins.
A few weeks ago, at our summit with Dr. Kickass to plan the upcoming IVF 2.0 with hopefully good fertilization as a result of science fiction, I as usual went into robot mode. I shoved aside the offered box of tissues, looked him straight in the eye and said "I'd be super stoked if we can get some embryos to freeze. I'll be happy this time if we can accomplish just that. But if you get two, we're putting in two".
I understand that there are risks involved with carrying twins, that having two newborns somehow doesn't double the trouble but multiplies it exponentially. I would be elated to get pregnant with one, I promise. Elated. I will, however, after 3+ years of fertility treatments, an endless sea of BFNs and one early miscarriage, also be elated if I end up with sci-fi twins.
Let me just say in regards to the honesty in that article... I am all about people saying the things that most people wouldn't say out loud.
Probably the quickest way to earn my respect and admiration is brutal honesty and a total lack of bull shit. Don't confuse that with being unkind - I'm just talking about saying what you actually feel. When a person does this, usually I end up immediately falling in love with them because a lack of bull shit and a surplus of bravery are my green m&ms, my aphrodisiac dujour. Brutal honesty will usually result in my desperately wanting to know you and be your friend.
There are those times, however, where someone says something terrible. I still respect them for it, because this ends up letting me know, from the get go, that they're a douchebag without my having to accidentally stumble across that information when I'm more invested. (Example: "I'm against the gays! Abomination, I say!" "THANK YOU. You have now saved me from wasting my time, asshat".)
So in a weird way, even though brain is now oozing out of my ears and I'm gonna need a dartboard with his face on it, I can respect the fact that he said exactly what he was feeling, in a public forum. That takes balls, even though those balls need a good punching.
Now granted, I take up just a little corner of the internet and everyday I discover new blogs and stories that open me up to a new side of IF land.. But please, tell me, has anyone else heard of an unwanted IVF pregnancy??
This couple had a son, and wanted to have a sibling for that son. So two years of IUIs and heartbreak later, they resigned themselves to IVF, and decided to put in two embryos to 'stack the deck'. They were hoping for a baby girl, instead ended up with twin boys and his response was to be extremely disappointed and angry.
And I quote, "As horrible as this might sound, we found ourselves wishing these twins away." They are, and I quote, "...counting down -- not like expecting parents but like cancer patients with only months to live." He charmingly refers to his first born son as 'the free one' and to one of his expected twins as the 'extra one'.
I am not underestimating the amount of panic that goes through a person when they discover they're having twins. I get it. If I'm lucky enough to get two embryos to put in, and if I'm lucky enough for those two embryos to both stick, I will still when I hear the news have moments if not days where I think "how the fuck am I going to do this??"
If he were just some guy whose wife accidentally got pregnant and was panicking about having twins, I would be irritated for sure but would probably limit that irritation to rolling my eyes and mumbling "fucking fertiles" to myself. I have long ago given up on expecting most fertiles to really, truly understand how painful creating a family is for some people.
But how the hell does a person, at the end of a two year road of infertility, end up with such a total lack of gratitude? How the hell do you not only end up with such a lack of gratitude, but end up smugly patting yourself on the back for coming up with charming, passive aggressive ways to refer to your unborn children? How the hell do you pay money to put two embryos in, and then whine about it harder than those twins are ever going to whine?
Honestly, this guy shouldn't be the one that's panicking. His fucking children-to-be should be panicking. He's complaining about how they are going to be the worst thing that's ever happened and they're not even born yet.
And what I would really love to know is what his wife thinks of his little essay. I would really love to know how it feels to have gone through two years of fertility treatments full of pain and torture, to be transforming your body into that of a warrior woman to carry and give birth to those babies, and have the man be openly complaining about what a disaster this is going to be for him.
I have no idea if this woman thinks he's clever and accurate, and aides in patting his back. I have no idea if this woman is currently curled up in a ball in her one bedroom apartment, hurt beyond my wildest dreams and humiliated. In either event, if I were this woman's friend, I would feel the immediate need to point a few things out to him:
- Not to minimize the emotional pain of a man going through infertility, but emotions aside let's get some perspective, here. This woman has gone through 2 years of hormones, injections, weight gain/loss, cramps, and all around body failings. You jizzed in a cup.
- You may not understand that, but you were able to comprehend the 400,000 times you're asked if you want to put two in, right?
- No fucking way did your buddy from college in reference to his twins say "Think of the worst thing you can imagine. That was what it was like". Unless, of course, the two of you both attended Douchbags Who Should Be Sterilized University.
- I love that you say you've "privately admitted you don't like the new children". You just said it on HuffPo, asshat, and I sincerely hope you're having a third party pen the baby book.
- Please explain to me, Uncle Tom, about how after years of being infertile you somehow end up spouting out such unbelievably self involved horse shit worse than I've heard from any fertile?
- I love that the only point to posting this article, as far as I can see, is to have people tell you that it 'isn't going to suck'. There's no possible way to feel bad for you, just for the babies. It is going to suck for them.
I do not feel bad for you if both babies come out whining with the needs of newborns (the audacity!) I feel bad for your wife for having to deal with a whining grown man (so much worse than colic because you use words... public words.). Absolutely unfair for a newborn to expect to be loved and cared for, totally reasonable for a grown man to expect the public at large to soothe him about getting something a lot of us would kill for.
What really gets me is that last week was National Infertility Awareness Week. Everybody blogged about it (including me!), people bravely came out on Facebook.. there were more articles, memes, blogposts, status updates, etc., on the subject than I've ever seen. Truly inspiring.
We try so hard to explain to fertiles how difficult a process this is, how heartbreaking it is, and to especially help them understand this is the unselfish task of warriors, a task that most probably couldn't handle. And especially with IVF, there's a lot of octomom, 'starving children in the world', misunderstood stigma bullshit.
Best case scenario, there is only one ignorant and smug fertile who is going to read this article and think to themselves 'yup, always knew IVF should be banned because this is what ends up happening'. Or worse, "yup, infertility is just gawds way of making sure certain people can't procreate".
And we so rarely, in this community, get to hear from men. It's such a treat when we get to. And this is the jackass talking about it on Huffington Post.
Please alert me when an infertility article is written on HuffPo by a man, and not by one of this poor womans four children.