10 Ways Infertility Prepares You for Parenthood

Infertility sucks.  But, while it depresses you, drains your bank account and almost kills you in the short-term, in the long run it can be good preparation for parenthood.  Some might say it even makes you a better parent than you would have become otherwise, if you let it. Here’s how getting the short straw before becoming a parent can be a benefit, once you finally are one:

Infertility prepares you for:

1.  All of the doctors appointments you’ll have once you’re pregnant, and for your new baby.  In fact, while other women are complaining about how many appointments they have, you’ll be rejoicing at the reduction of the number of times you have to go, and at the pleasure of going for such an awesome reason.

2.  The discomforts of pregnancy.   You’re guaranteed to not complain about the fact that you can’t ride rollercoasters or jump on trampolines and you’re less likely to dwell on the aches and pains you will experience as you morph into a whaleish host.  You may already have experienced nausea, vomiting, bloating, surgeries, and/or severe pain from all of the medications, self-injections, ovarian cysts and medical procedures you’ve went through.  Infertility removes any feelings of entitlement and you will be less likely to take things for granted. Even things like peeing through your pants when you sneeze.

3.  Unsolicited questions and advice.  You’re used to dealing with questions about when you’re planning to have children, comments about how you better not wait too long, and advice about how “just relaxing” will cause you to conceive within the month, so you’ll be well prepared for strangers asking you when you’ll “pop” (looks like any day now!), and telling you that formula feeding is basically the equivalent to poisoning your child.  Idiocy abounds.

4. Random stranger’s hands on your belly.  Just remember:  SO much better than the dildo camera.

5.  Dealing with any doubts or qualms about  becoming “tied down” with a child. Infertility gives you time to realize how badly you want to become a parent, so you don’t waste any precious time with your baby wishing you were still childless and “free”.

6.  How difficult parenthood is.  Infertility is hard.  Parenting is even harder.  The struggles you experience beforehand will help ease you into the time-consumption, expenses and exhaustion you’ll be graced with later.

7.  Working through with challenges and hard times with your spouse. Think of this as a litmus test for your relationship.

8.  The unknown.  Infertility reminds you that nothing is a guaranteed and any luck or happiness that happens to fall into your lap is a gift.

9.  All of the worrying. When you’re faced with horrible or scary scenario involving your child, instead of thinking that this is the worst thing that could ever happen to you, you know that the most horrific thing would really be not being in this situation in the first place. You’ll still panic (EVERY DAY), but at least there’s some sort of cosmic retribution for all of the anxiety you experienced before you had kids.

10.  Being a more empathetic person. People who have been through battles of their own tend to be kinder, more compassionate, more helpful to others. All traits any good parent wants to possess and model for their child.  Of course, this is only true if you don’t remain so bitter that you’re unable to see that others with different problems have had different battles to fight.

Infertility prepares you for parenthood in countless ways.
Infertility prepares you for parenthood in countless ways.

If you liked this post, you may also like my other infertility and pregnancy posts.

18 thoughts on “10 Ways Infertility Prepares You for Parenthood

  1. Thoughtful post. I went through unsuccessful treatment and ended up adopting. The pain/hassles/expense/pain-in-the-ass subsided and real life took over. Parenting is hard, too. But you get those smiles and cuddles (much nicer than needles and ultrasounds). And then they become teenagers …

  2. I chuckled on #4, sorry, but I remember that one when I was pregnant. All I wanted was a healthy child. Though I was taking preventative measures at the time (birth control/condoms and I was told by my doc I would always have trouble when I wanted to conceive due to cysts), I knew this was my chance. She’s 11 now, and I wouldn’t trade a second of it. It’s just too precious. Sure, sometimes I lament how complicated it gets, keeping up with sports calendars, academics (DI), and choir schedules, I still get to be a mom, and I’m thankful for the complicated pattern that is my life. Chaos abounds, lol, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. 🙂

  3. How about “The Expectation Twist?” During my “time of trial,” I learned that my expectations were unrealistic, fears unfounded, or really a hidden strength disguised as something else. I also suffered a lot of crushing disappointment. But, I learned and grew. Sometimes what reality gives instead makes more sense, makes us stronger, or is just plain better than what we had ever dared to hope or dream before.

    1. Thanks. The process of trying to conceive is so full of stress and despair I think it’s so important to give some hope and reassurance from those of us coming out the other side.

  4. I stumbled onto your blog from Pinterest. I love this post, it is hard to realize what can seem like a trial can help us later on. I am in the midst of ttc for the past 6 years, it is hard. Thanks for putting such a positive light on this matter, and a good laugh. My blog is fertilefindings.wordpress.com.

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