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Researching the Next Steps

We're approaching a crossroads of our infertility journey. If an attempt or two of injectables/IUI don't result in conception, we will have to choose to try in vitro fertilization (IVF), pursue adoption, or put building our family on hold. (Insert me muttering Philippians 4:6 under my breath; "Do not be anxious about anything... do not be anxious about anything... do not be anxious about anything...") For some couples, the decision might be obvious. Aaron and I, however, feel the need to do some research, seek counsel, and invest a lot of prayer before we take any step after IUIs, should that be necessary. Really, we feel like these next few IUIs are just allowing us to be proactive while buying time to figure out what to do, where God seems to be leading us. I'm sure I'll be discussing our decision a lot more in posts to come, but here's a quick summary of where we currently stand...

1) Our insurance will cover up to 4 IVF attempts; however, we have ethical questions about how to pursue IVF in a way that honors life from its very beginnings at fertilization.

2) I like adoption theoretically, but my heart is not ready at this moment to pursue that option. Infertility makes it so different, in my mind, than adopting to add to the children a family already has. Plus, adoption would require a lot of resources that we don't necessarily have right now.

Faced with a lot of unknowns in these areas, I'm going to do what comes naturally to me - READ! To that end, I recently purchased these 2 books:

I also plan to listen to the messages mentioned here.
Does anyone else have any resources to recommend on IVF or adoption?


Kris said...

I don't have any resources to offer, but I can share my experience...

I had a lot of the same IVF concerns you have. I wasn't going to do it at all. But the first cycle, we did a very gently stim cycle and got very few eggs- the goal being ending up with only one or two embryos so we could transfer them all and not have to freeze any. Which is exactly what happened.

Then, when we knew from the first IVF that fertilization was not a problem, we tried GIFT, which is a lot more invasive, but fertilization takes place inside your body. After that ended up in an ectopic pregnancy (extremely rare in GIFT) concerns were raised about my tubes, so GIFT was no longer an option- even thought it was far more palatable to me than IVF.

We went ahead with a second IVF and didn't go gentle--- it's so much work and if we had ended up with nothing to transfer with IVF#1 I would have been devestated. But the idea of freezing embryos broke my heart. Ultimately we made the decision that how ever many embryos we created, we owed it to all of them to try. So if we ended up with 7 frozen embryos and got pregnant with each transfer, we would have 7 kids even though our original plan was to have much less.

The decisions weren't our ideal choice on how to bring children into the world. It had aspects where I had to give a little and hope I made the right choice. Ultimately, we felt that as long as we lived up the the responsibility of trying our best to bring into the world all the lives we had created, we were doing the all we could to protect the sanctity of their lives given our situation. It's not perfect, but what is?

Of course, this situation may not work for you. But I totally understand your concerns. I hope God leads you to your answer soon.

The Town Criers said...

Oh--I wish you had joined us. You can still look back through everyone's archives, but we just did this adoption book for the online book club and had the author answer questions. It's a great book. And I like her first book which covers IVF. Also Resolving Infertility (which is by the staff at RESOLVE). A good book for all treatments.

I just read the book if you want to bounce ideas.

andrea_jennine said...

Mel, I actually got the idea to read the adoption book from a few of the reviews during your "Book Brigade" - thanks for facilitating that!

GLouise said...

Prayer is always the best way to start when making a big decision. And only you two can make the decisions you are now facing...Definitely explore all of your options before "moving on" to adoption...You want to feel confident in that decision, should you ever come to it.

I hope that you will conceive soon and all of this will be a "moo" point :-)

Keep us posted!!