This article is untended for diagnosis of any medical condition nor advocate or prescribe any specific medication or treatment. Always seek the advice of a licensed physician for proper diagnosis or treatment of any disease or condition.
I was raised with phrases such as, “A woman isn’t complete without a child,” “A childless woman is worth less than a dried up old cow- at least the cow can be used for meat,” and other phrases not so pretty. It seemed that infertile women in the 1960’s faced far more than just a physical problem. Perhaps that’s why many women kept their conditions such a secret.
When I was diagnosed as infertile in the Air Force during the early 1980’s, my mother hit the roof. No woman in her family was infertile, and she wanted grandchildren from me, not some adopted child. The infertility became a chasm between us she just couldn’t seem to get across.
I tried different treatments. For six months, I was placed on a drug called Danzol at 1000mg a day. The FDA has since banned the use of this drug at such a high dose and for that long a period-, the side effects were monstrous.
I took other drugs, too numerous to mention. I endured side effects ranging from muscle weakness, loss of menstrual cycle, and mood swings that could only be described as near insanity.
By the time I married at the age of 25, I had given up. My husband said it didn’t matter- that at some point we could consider in vitro, surrogate, or adoption. The doctors said in vitro would never work on me. None of the high-tech, highly successful treatments would. My condition had gone too far, and medical science couldn’t have stopped it anyway.
When the marriage ended, so did my hope of having a child. However, my story doesn’t end there.
Over the years, I came to realize the “songs of the 60s” were nothing but dribble. A woman’s true value is in her actions and her character, just as a man’s is measured. I have worked with children in Sunday school, listened to friends’ teenagers, and enjoy helping a neighbor with her grandchildren.
My heart soars when the children run up to me, calling my name. I joke with them, cry when their grades are bad or at the loss of a pet, and tell them I love them like my own. For some reason, they want to come home with me because they think I’ll let them stay up all night. I assure them that’s not the case.
If you’re infertile, don’t despair. Your heart, your spirit, your character, your integrity is the best part of you. So a body part doesn’t work. That’s okay. I know what it is to want a child of your own.
It takes more than DNA to make a family. Your DNA doesn’t have to match, just your hearts do.