Don't Let Depression Get You Down (Tuesday)

(Start with Monday if you can.  It will be quite a pleasant surprise. Like finding a beautifully wrapped gift that someone hid behind the couch for you for Christmas that you just discovered. Hopefully it isn't assorted cheeses or smoked salami... No, I have a feeling if it were, you would have had a hint it was there before now.)  So, what were we talking about? Oh right, the lighter side of infertility...Namely: Depression.Infertility and depression actually have a lot in common. Millions suffer from it. Nobody wants to talk about it. If you do want to talk about it, nobody except someone who charges a hefty fee wants to listen to it.  Many sufferers deal with it by ignoring it until it goes away by itself...which it never does. Neither one makes you the life of the party.

"I haven't been able to get pregnant for three years."

"Wow,what a coincidence! I haven't been able to get out of bed for six months!"


"What drugs have you tried? I've been on Lupron, Clomid, and Gonal-F"

"I haven't been on that many.  Just pot, Tequila, and now Paxil."


"I hate going to family gatherings. My parents just tell everyone we're out of town." 

"I hate going to them too. My parents just tell everyone I'm shy."


"Sex has become a chore. I'd just as soon sleep."

"Me too!" 


I think a problem is, at least in the U.S.... can't speak for elsewhere: We're big on the appearance of things. We're big on fake. Fake hair. Fake breasts. Fake nails. We don't like people to know we're not perfect and we definitely, GD forbid, don't want them to know we're not normal. Normal people get pregnant. Normal people are grateful just to be alive. 

Of course at any given time, there are 7 million who can't get pregnant and 3-5% of the population who just as soon crawl into a dark corner and stay there for a month like a dust ball...and occasionally, they're the same people in both groups.    

And infertility and depression are both pretty easy to hide if you want to. If you're uncomfortable with being obese or tall, you probably can't hide that you're obese or tall. But nobody can tell by looking at you that you can't get pregnant. Nobody can tell by looking at you, that you're in a funk. And let's face it: People just as soon not know either anyway. It's too messy. Too inconvenient.

If I'm honest about it, I feel that way myself. Somebody comes within talking distance of me: Close friend, relative or passerby: "Hey. How ya doin?'"

"Well I got married pretty late in life. And then we had as much sex as I could tolerate for a year. And then I had a bunch of tests done. My hormone levels were pretty good. But I was going to the doctor every two days and then I went for four rounds of treatments that didn't work so now I'm about ready to jump out of the fkn window."

I just as soon say: "Fine thanks" and keep on walking. Notice I never end my response with: "and you?".

Listen I gotta go. I'm training for a triathlon next month and I have to learn how to swim and ride a bike.  Please check out Tracy Birkinbine's article this week about depression and infertility:

I'll talk with ya again tomorrow.