First off, thank you all from the depth of my soul for being here.
Secondly, I asked for honesty and I completely meant it. Mean it. Still. So please don’t take my response to Artsweet’s comment in my Delurking post , as a way of saying that if you tell me what you really think, I will make a giant deal out of it. I am responding to her comment because I imagine she is articulating what some other people might also have been thinking, the comment helped me better articulate how I am feeling, and I want to write more about pain, in general.
I think that we all do compare pain. It is the truth. And Artsweet says that when we play the pain Olympics we loose. This is true. BUT, it is also not true. We all compare pain, all the time. Maybe we wish we had someone else’s problems instead of our own. Sometimes other people’s tremendous pain makes us feel better about our own, as in giving us some perspective, a way to put our pains into the context of the planet.
This does not need to *minimize* our pain, it just puts it in context.
Also, having a baby and going through this is so.much.better than having a house with no babies yet. It just is. And this doesn’t mean I can’t feel my own pain just as much as you, but sometimes I think it is nice to tell the truth about how much things suck. No babies sucks worse. Yet, to me this truth does not have to invalidate or minimize anyone else’s experience. I don’t have a super great answer even, for why I want to say it, make any comparison at all. Maybe becasue I think we all are doing it anyway?
Lets not pretend that we don’t all compare our pain to other peoples pain. We do. Now let me say this: I should not have mentioned banks melting down samples, this, of course would/could be devastating, even if it were not someones pre testicular cancer banked sperm.
I take that whole sentence back. I take the whole notion back. What I should have said was this: Having this donor option taken away is so much worse than having any other sperm taken away, from us. It is so much worse than having another KD say no, or we changed our minds. I happen to know because we have experienced another “perfect” KD say yes and then no. We have experienced the only frozen sperm we ever felt comfortable using being recalled by the bank because the donor reached his family limit. The reasons why UD and H saying no is sososo much worse for us is material for another post, because there are like 10 really devastating reasons practically, emotionally, biologically, and spiritually, why is a suckfest…some reasons make sense, others just are what they are. But I should never have compared us loosing this donor to others loosing their sperm, in whatever capacity. It all sucks. Or maybe it doesn’t if you are not so attached to the donor or the biology of it all. But we are. My point in making the stupid comment (about frozen sperm melting at a bank) at all was to let you all know that this was not just any sperm we were talking about but the sperm that made our son. The sperm that allows us to both be related to our kid. So I wanted you to know what a double, triple, quadruple slap in the face it was. But still it was a stupid way for me to say it. Phew.
But that part of Artsweet’s comment did not really upset me, it just made me make some needed clarifications, not just semantically, but within myself. So thank you for that.
But. There is more. To her comment “But I imagine: what if she [H] has been trying to get pregnant and not succeeding? Can you imagine watching someone else get pregnant with your husband’s sperm under those circumstances and how painful that would be?”
I have many responses to this which I will not post. Lets just say it made me mad. Let me just say please give me some credit here.
This is not the case (her actively trying to get pregnant), I happen to know. And I won’t share the details of her situation in my blog because that doesn’t feel right…but there are some issues about about having babies which are probably related to her problem with donating. But PLEASE don’t assume that I have not considered this. Seriously, I want some credit here.
I am not a person who can’t understand how others feel. Look back at my posts about PPKDand The Wife. I was MORE than understanding about The Wife’s feelings. I was mad then, and am mad now about a yes turning into a no, but not her feelings of possesiveness about the sperm. I get that. And at least PPKD and The Wife shared their reasons with us, apologized profusely…tried to make amends.
UD and H have both, at various times both independently and together told us (promised, really) that they would donate again for our 2nd if it did not work with S, or our 3rd, if we wanted one. As recently as 6 months ago from her, and 3 weeks ago from him. So I believe I am entitled to be REALLY mad and feel betrayed at they way this is being handled…which does not mean I feel no empathy for her position. It just means I can’t really feel bad for her when she won’t tell us what is going on, and when there has been no acknowledgement from her that she is changing her promise. No acknowledgement to us directly saying “sorry,” saying “I know how hard this must be,” saying “I want to help and I will work on dealing with my stuff so that we can.” Nothing. I think we are owed that much.
Ok, enough about that. Onto what I really want to talk about.
I see categories of pain, and each person experiences their life and the shit within it differently. I see a category of pain that exists, different for each person, for which one is left scarred. This kind of pain is something that might heal but will leave a permanent mark, or hole, or even a wound that never heals. It is the kind of thing that one never forgets. A miscarriage may or may not fall into this category, depending on who you are and the circumstances of your life and your psyche. A donor saying no, may or may not fall into this category.
What I am saying is this: I do not think this (the UD and H situation) is the worst thing that could ever happen to my family. I would NEVER say that because there is always something worse that could happen, and I have been through much worse. I am just saying that in our journey, in this circumstance, having UD and H say no to me feels like one of “the worsts” in my life. For me, this potential NO feels like something precious being ripped away, and is in MY category of worsts, not to mention that we are close to UD and H, they are our family and this could create a giant rift.
Another important piece of this that I wanted to express is that I’m not a stupid rich girl who thinks getting kicked out of her sorority is the WORST thing that has ever happened to her. I don’t want to go into the details, but you will just have to trust that I have been through some serious suffering in my life. This pain of them potentially saying no is in *that* category of worsts.
By telling you this, I am trying to say, please see how painful this is. Please see that this is not another donor saying “no”. That this is not just another bump in out TTC road. This is a devastating bump. If they say no it is something I won’t recover from. Even when we move on and have a child another way. Even when this chapter in our lives is over. Most of it will just be over, but not this. I can post another time more about the specifics of why it feels like this, but I want you all, you too Artsweet, to know that for ME this is in a worst category, and for ME, my worst category is filled with some hardcore shit, so for me to compare this to that is serious.
Does this make sense? I applaud anyone who made it through this entire post.
P.S. I know and love Artsweet, and hope she is not offended by this post, but rather has a better understanding of where I’m coming from. I had been wanting to get this all out, but until her comment was not able to form the right words. Also, if one is going to ask for honesty (me) one has to be ready to hear it (I am, but depending on how it is said I can get kinda defensive – and am working on that), AND if one responds with a challenging comment (Artsweet) one needs to be prepared that the other person (me) might respond in a giant post (like this). 🙂
I still want to say: bring it on. I love to be stretched, to be forced to think about myself, my life, my words, my choices, in new ways. So speak up. I might speak up back, but I like it. Honestly.
P.P.S. Now I’m wondering if I should have just not posted this post at all. I think I feel really defensive and reactive about the whole thing. It feels vulnerable, and I don’t want to offend Artsweet or anyone else who was thinking similar thoughts. Maybe I should have just emailed her, and shut up, but now people have commented so I am keeping the post up. Sometimes I just get so sick of how I’m not an easy going person.