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Talking About Guy IF
a blog by Alec, May 5, 2011
Last Thursday, JK and I attended the open house/grand re-opening of the River North location of Fertility Centers of Illinois (FCI). Last year, their site and partner Pulling Down the Moon were devastated when the Chicago River overflowed its banks.
JK and I were treated there by Dr. Sipe, and JK also had a great experience at Pulling Down the Moon. Though we are no longer patients, we will feel forever grateful to both for helping us make it to the other side.
I also saw this as a networking opportunity.
As a new blogger, I figured that I would mention to folks from both FCI and Pulling Down the Moon what I am up to. If I truly wish to help others (and I do!) then getting to know some of the offline resources makes sense.
Every person I spoke with there said the same thing: We are really glad you are blogging about your experience! There are so few male voices out there! Guys just don't seem to want to talk about it.
It's nothing I haven't heard before, but it drives home a truth. Furthermore, it underlines a responsibility that I have to reach out. To find the people (Wannabe Dads!). To tell their stories (discreetly). To help others survive infertility thanks to the experiences and wisdom of those who have gone before.
It gets more complicated for me at this moment, because our IF was not male factor infertility. Though my sperm were a touch lazy, they were sufficient and could perform their task. So how do I speak to male factor infertiles?
I'll do my best. Some of the humiliation that we experience is the same. You might like a story that I tell on my own blog called "Would You Like a Sample of my Sperm?"
This story tells of my very strange trip to FCI to provide a sperm sample and how bloody difficult it is to masturbate on demand.
It never seemed difficult at home ... what?!?! What did I say?
The comments indicated that there are a lot of men who have gone through worse. I also found it interesting that many of the comments included the media they brought with them: magazines, DVD players and laptops among them.
But any Wannabe Mom who believes that the male IF road is a cakewalk should see if they can bring themselves to orgasm in a setting such as an IF clinic. It's not exactly a romantic setting, is it?
I don't wish to compare the experiences. Male IF is still easier than the awful physical, psychological and spiritual journey that an infertile Wannabe Mom experiences. But guys do have it tough and could use a sounding board, I think.
So Wannabe Dads, would you consider relaying these types of stories? You can send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. We will not reveal anything about the sender, only details of their story as they tell it.