There are all types of sisterhoods. Infertility certainly has a huge one. When I was doing stand-up comedy, I was part of a great sisterhood. Back then, female comics rarely worked together. In the NYC clubs, yes. But on the road...never. We were considered a novelty act. Ventriloquists, Magicians, Women. Nobody would book more than one novelty act in a show.
"We can't have her on that night, we already have a juggler."
So every time you'd run into a fellow female comic it was like a grand reunion.
Every sisterhood joins women together in what they have in common. For comedians it's: "Hey, will you give us a break? We're just trying to make people laugh and maybe eek out a living here." With infertility it's:
"Hey, will you give us a break? We all have this sucky hell-hole of a disease/ condition/ major fricken annoyance. We're just trying to get through it and maybe eek out a baby here."
We all involuntarily joined this infertility sisterhood. What you do with your membership card is totally up to you.
I'll be honest, I didn't appreciate the sisterhood of the traveling hormones during my infertility days.
When I was going through infertility, I never went to any support groups. I never logged onto any online support forums. I never socialized with any other infertility patients...for several reasons--All of which I'm sure any good psychologist worth her $125 for 45 minutes would find troubling:
I think I'll simply go to my doctor appointments in the early mornings and do my belly shots at night and just go on with my life the rest of the day and pretend neither ever happened. Yeah, that's what I'll do. If I don't ever talk about infertility, then I must not be infertile. Doesn't that make total sense?
See, that's why I couldn't join any support groups-- online or otherwise. if you're talking to me about your infertility: Your blood tests, drugs, and procedures, and I know exactly what you're talking about, I must either be a Reproductive Endocrinologist or, like you, I'm a patient.
Let's see, I think I'd remember if I'd gone to medical school... No, I don't remember doing that.
It's the same sound theory that kept me from dating short guys--back when I was single, of course. Even though I'm short by any reasonable person's standards... how could I ever date a teeny man? If he's standing next to me and we're the same height...and people start saying: "Awww... They're so cute." My ego-denial just couldn't compute.
(I really need to move to a country where the average height is five feet tall. For once in my life, I want to tower over someone over ten... and maybe even duck through a few doorways.)
2) My Unhealthy Competitive Nature
During my bout with infertility, I'd momentarily forget I was trying to get pregnant and just try to make strangers in the waiting room jealous.
"So I have thirty good size follicles. One is 60 mm's. All of the nurses, doctors... everyone joked that maybe there was an ostrich egg in there. Isn't that hilarious?! Nobody had ever seen one that size before. They had to invent a special test just for me." Or:
"Oh, they transferred three embryos back into you? Well, I'm going to have my doctor put in nine." (I stopped just short of sticking out my tongue and saying: "Naaaa!")
Now, I think I have a little more compassion for women on the infertility chat forums. Back then, I would have been like: "Oh, yeah, yeah, that's terrible too...not to interrupt, but, anyway, like I was saying..."
I think that nowadays, I'm much better equipped to be part of the sisterhood from my current perspective: As someone who's gone through infertility and treatments and made it out alive. I think back then, I would have been one of those sisters you actually create a family reunion around: You plan it for a date when you know she can't make it.
(Want more laughs at infertility's expense? Please do click my eBook icon- reviews, chapter previews-- to the left over there. This eBook has been downloaded by thousands of infertility sufferers, their partners, families, & medical teams. http://amazon.com/dp/B007G9X19A -also on Nook & Kobo.)