Photo Credit ? @http://mmaler.com
Infertility is both financially and emotionally draining. Even the strongest of relationships are likely to endure a rough patch or two during the struggle to conceive. It can make or break you. As they say, though, if you make it, you’ll come out stronger in the end.
Money is a stressor in any marriage or relationship. Combine that with endless hours on the phone with the insurance company and countless repetitions of your saga to a representative and you’re bound to be exhausted. Even with the best coverage, you’ll probably incur some out-of-pocket expense. Some of the procedures and/or medicines may be denied. This happened to us in the beginning of our journey. The insurance company wouldn’t cover my husband’s medications. Because they were for fertility, we ended up basically paying a second mortgage for quite a few months until we could change policies. Worse yet, are those couples who don’t have fertility coverage at all or have exceeded their maximum coverage.
It’s imperative to do your research and find out what your fertility coverage is as soon as you’re referred to a fertility specialist. I’d also recommend going here ?? http://www.resolve.org/family-building-options/insurance_coverage/state-coverage.html#Connecticut to see if and what your state mandates. Connecticut, for example, has a state mandate that allows lifetime coverage for 4 cycles of ovulation induction, 3 Interuterine Insemination (IUI) procedures, and 2 In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) cycles. Of course, there are caveats such as age and length of time you’ve been enrolled. For example, at the time, I carried insurance for my husband and I, which was through the Board of Education. I assumed this meant that it was publicly funded and therefore followed the state mandate. However, the city’s insurance was in fact private and only one of the three plans offered included the state mandate for fertility coverage. Naturally, open enrollment wasn’t for another few months, but I guess as luck would have it, time was on my side. I was able to change coverage wellllllll before our IVF cycle. I was concerned that while I still had the same insurance company, since I changed plans in less than a year, the state mandate might be null and void. The HR representative didn’t know the answer for sure, but said she’d look into it. She then (sitting at a desk with her children’s annual baseball pictures lined up behind her) tilted her head and said, “But really, in the grand scheme, what’s another year?” Note to all: NEVER say what’s another year, another month, another week, another day, another second to a woman yearning to bear a child, especially when you have your own brood to go home to and snuggle. Shame on her.
I digress, but honestly all of those doctor’s office phone calls, battles with the insurance company, dead-end encounters with HR can wear you down. It’s like having a part-time job on top of all of your real responsibilities. As if that’s not enough, the emotional stress sets in. It’s easy to fall into that rut of sadness and to distance yourself from those closest to you, even your significant other. The burdens of infertility can put a strain on your love life. There can be a disconnect caused by the “He doesn’t get it” and lack of drive because “What’s the point?~We’re not getting a baby from it”.
When you get to that point, it’s important to step back and re-evaluate the situation. Yes, you’re overwhelmed and feel like life is being sucked out of you, but you are also going through this for a reason. The both of you love each other, so much so, that you want to create something amazingly beautiful together. You must remember, that while his pain may be different, he is still hurting in his own way. And it’s like pulling a rubber band-the more you pull away and push him away, the sooner it’s bound to break. Think back to the way you were before you tried to conceive and make that your final destination.
In the end, only the two of you can understand what’s going on in your lives. Only the two of you, can support one another’s needs. Only the two of you can make that most special gift, that is uniquely yours…and in the end, the two of you will be stronger as individuals, but more importantly as a couple.