“Why has God cursed me with infertility?”

Yesterday I received this email, the subject line of which read My spiritual crisis.

Hi John! I am writing you to get your insight on a struggle I am having. I grew up in a Southern Baptist Church, and loved it. I had what most Christians would call a very close “relationship” with Jesus. Then I went to college. I started questioning things and decided that some of the things I had been taught just were not right. I became extremely more liberal in my views, but still very much involved in my Church and “strong” in my relationship with Christ.

Then I got married and tried for three long years to get pregnant. Three long years of painful, expensive, invasive fertility treatments. I can not even begin to explain to you the emotional sorrow that infertility caused me. It also caused me a huge spiritual crisis. How can an all-loving God bless drug addicts with babies that they don’t even want, while I sat crying with empty arms? Had I not been a good and faithful follower pretty much all my life? Why was I being passed up on the blessing of growing a family? I could not, and still do not understand it.

I eventually found a medication that worked for me, and was able to conceive a son. He is now three years old. For a while the joy of having him overshadowed what I had been through, but now it has been another three years of infertility, and I am going through it all over again to have another child. Only this time, it is worse in a couple of ways. This time, we have no insurance coverage for infertility and no money to afford treatment, so I am left feeling even more helpless than before. Worse than that, however, is that this time, I know firsthand what I am missing out on, so it seems to hurt even more if that is possible. Every time a friend or family member shares their good news that they are pregnant, a small part of me is happy for them, but I mostly just feel the sting of disparity. God is supposed to be fair and just… but I have a really hard time seeing it the longer I live. I would greatly appreciate your thoughts on this. Thank you!

Dear woman who wrote me this:

I’m uncomfortable answering your letter, because I don’t think you’ll like my response. Nontheless:

1. You did have a child. Clearly God fought you pretty hard on that, but ultimately you did receive the very blessing you desired. I’m not sure how not being granted the same amazing blessing twice serves as evidence that God is unfair and unjust. If you knew a poor man who begged, pleaded and prayed to God to bring him a million dollars, and then he got a million dollars, what would you think if he later claimed that God was unfair and unjust for not bringing him a second million dollars?

2. You believe that God has made you infertile; you believe that being a mother is God’s highest desire for you; you know that there are babies out there who need a mother at least as desperately as you want another baby. So maybe adoption might be something for you to look into?

Love to you. I know you’re suffering. But do consider the idea that if God blocks one path for you, it’s because he’s got something even better waiting for you down another.

About John Shore

John Shore (who, fwiw, is straight) is the author of UNFAIR: Christians and the LGBT Question, and three other great books. He is founder of Unfundamentalist Christians (on Facebook here), and executive editor of the Unfundamentalist Christians group blog.  (In total John's two blogs receive some 250,000 views per month.) John is also co-founder of The NALT Christians Project, which was written about by TIME,  The Washington Post, and others. His website is JohnShore.com. You're invited to like John's Facebook page. Don't forget to sign up for his mucho-awesome newsletter. If you shop at Amazon, help support John by entering the site through this link right here--Amazon will then send John 3-4% of the cost of anything you buy before exiting the site again.

 

  • Sharla

    My husband and I are infertile. We asked many of the same questions, because I know that we’d be good parents. (He has children from a previous marriage, so this may be harder on me than on him.) At this point the only answer that I can come up with is that if I had kids of my own, I wouldn’t be as free to spend a week counseling at camp, spend my evenings leading youth groups for, other folks’ kids. In a way they’re all “my” kids. It isn’t the same, of course, but perhaps that’s the good God has brought out of the heartbreak of infertility. (I won’t say that God allowed us to be infertile so that this would happen, just that God can bring good out of bad.)

    • http://www.enesvy.com Nicole

      This is lovely. You are amazing, Sharla. You’re shining the love of Jesus over all those children.

  • http://findingthebliss.wordpress.com Mike Wise

    Interesting letter that…

    I understand the woman’s pain. My wife and I have been struggling with this ourselves. There is nothing wrong with my wife but there are issues with me and because of that we have not been able to have a child of our own. It’s funny that her first thought is how unfair God is, I wrote a post just today that expressed my grief about our current situation but my first thought is to point the accusing finger at myself. My doubt isn’t so much in God it’s moreso in whether I’m really understand what God wants, or worse. that I’m so broken that God wants nothing to do with me. I don’t normally like to ‘spam’ other peoples blogs with my own posts but with your permission John I will leave this.

    http://findingthebliss.wordpress.com/2012/08/17/im-sorry/

    • Diana A.

      This broke my heart. I’m glad you shared it, but it broke my heart.

      • http://findingthebliss.wordpress.com Mike Wise

        Thank you for taking the time to read it. It wasn’t easy to write and I debated as to whether I should or shouldn’t but I did. Thanks again.

    • Elizabeth

      Seriously, Mike, this is a must-read post.

      • http://findingthebliss.wordpress.com Mike Wise

        I dunno about that Elizabeth, what I do know is I am grateful you took the time to read it. Thank you.

  • http://www.faithpermeatinglife.com Jessica @ Faith Permeating Life

    As someone who plans to adopt, I have to put it out there that adoption is not cheap. If they have no money to spend on infertility treatments, they may not have the money needed to adopt, either.

    • http://Www.unnameablecuriosity.wordpress.com Christine

      I see a lot of people saying this. I don’t live where you do. Can you explain why it is so expensive?

      • woman who wrote this

        The cost of an adoption varies based on a variety of factors such as where you live, what type of adoption (private, public, etc.), and often the age, gender, race, and location of the child. For example, newborn adoptions are generally much more expensive than older children, and international adoptions generally cost the most. In the US, the range is $0-$40,000+, with an average private adoption costing around $10,000.

        • http://Www.unnameablecuriosity.wordpress.com Christine

          Up to $40,000 *within* the US? What exactly are you paying for?

          But I *do* notice that the price starts a $0. So it is possible to adopt without the price tag?

          • Deanna Rendel

            friends of mine tried to adopt foster children and had their hearts broken…twice they were told a child was available to adopt and then the decision was reversed and the child was given to relatives (once after the child had lived with them for 1 1/2 years). This is the way they could afford to go through adoption, but it never worked out for them.

          • http://Www.unnameablecuriosity.wordpress.com Christine

            Can you not adopt kids in the system without fostering?

          • Susan in NY

            I think it is very unusual to adopt newborns without fostering. Parental rights have to be terminated before the child is free for adoption. And I don’t think it is usual for parental rights to be terminated at the time of the baby’s birth.

            I know people who have adopted from foster care, and yes, their hearts were broken through the process. But your heart can be broken in all sorts of terrible ways when it comes to babies.

            Susan in NY

          • Susan in NY

            Oh, one other thing. The phrase “child of your own” grates on me. The more PC terms are biological child and adopted child.

            Potential birth mothers “choose to make an adoption plan” or “choose to parent”. It really is not nice to say that they “gave up” the baby or “put up” the baby for adoption.

            Both adoptive parents and birth parents are real parents. My adopted son is a child of my own, as is my bio son.

            Thanks for reading.

            Susan in NY

          • Carol VanderNat

            My son and his wife struggled (as did the whole family) with infertility as well.

            Michigan has a program called “Safe Haven” where a birth mom can either go to a hospital, have her baby safely, and leave with no questions asked, or within 90 days of birth, drop off an infant at any public service facility.

            Today, my son and daughter in law, have two beautiful boys…one “adopted” and one “biological” (a final effort at IVF after countless attempts) There is only gratitude to the birth mom of the oldest boy for her courage in giving him to people she will never meet. There is NO difference in the feelings we felt when 1) They got the phone call which said: “Your son has just been born; you can come and take him home tomorrow” and 2) The one that said: “Mom…sit down….we’re pregnant!”

            The thought of that sweet boy being abused or abandoned is unfathomable…my point being that they are both “biological” children: one grew under my daughter-in-law’s heart, the other grew IN all of ours….

          • DR

            Not legally.

  • Amanda

    My response pretty much echoes #2 of John’s response. There are thousands of children out there who need and deserve a loving stable home. If my life were stable and I had the space, even being single, I’d adopt (an older child, not a baby) in a heartbeat. I’m one of those “weirdos” who has chosen to not reproduce. I’m at the upper edge of my childbearing years and I’m totally happy with my choice. I know many women want lots of children. Take a good look at the children out there who need homes. You could provide a wonderful home to one or even two of them. So many siblings get split up in foster care or adoptions, so if you can afford it, take a couple siblings… give them a chance to grow up together.

    There’s my two cents…

  • Carolyn

    I have struggled with fertility also. It is an extremely hard road. My first pregnancy, after a long time and fertility treatments, was a boy/girl twin pregnancy. I thought I had hit the fertility jackpot. Then we lost our son to stillbirth at 36 weeks. Our daughter was born healthy. What a struggle that was (and still can be 9 years later). I have been blessed with two other living children after surgeries and further fertility treatments…..none of it has come easily. But here I am with three beautiful living children and a beloved son in heaven.

    Through my struggles I have chosen to draw closer to God. It hasn’t always been easy. Relationships take work and they are about making choices. God has been an amazing source of strength for me. I wish the same for this woman and anyone who longs to become a parent. Lean on God. You have my prayers and good wishes.

  • InaCatq

    As the adopted child of infertile parents…

    I wonder what God is protecting you from, or trying to offer you, not what he is punishing you for.

  • AG

    Uh oh… John, I think I have read why you do not have children. Can I suggest that since this was not so much a choice you made as a result of the way you are / the childhood you had, that…umm… you do not know what this dear lady is going through.

    Sorry. I think highly of you, but…

    Being a childless adult whose body, mind and soul is screaming for the fulfillment of a child (first or second) probably is not so very different to being a completely closeted person who is screaming on the inside for an authentic life.

    I have been over 35, childless and MISERABLE about it. Like cold, hunger, homesickness and sexuality, there is no fulfillment or alternative to the one you crave.

    The prayer of the infertile? Not so different to the prayer of the-still-believing-it-can-be-fixed closeted gay: “Dear God, please cure me of this desire or TAKE IT AWAY”. And as with the struggling gay, that desire is strong and it is not going away.

    Adoption is outof reach for many because of the cost – thousands of dollars and an emotional rollercoaster.

    This lady cannot choose or control her feelings.

    You know what made mine better? A baby. And then another baby.

    • woman who wrote this

      yes! You nailed in on the head! Thanks so much for this! If nothing else, I feel less alone in my feelings, and extremely validated!

    • http://Www.unnameablecuriosity.wordpress.com Christine

      I don’t think not getting it is specific to John. (I don’t know specifically what you are referring to re: why John doesn’t have kids, but…) There are plenty of people of want kids and have every reason to want kids who are perfectly satisfied with adopted children only or only one biological child. I’m not saying it means the letter writer should be, too, but the idea that John doesn’t understand her because he’s messed up or something seems really weird.

      I am a woman, likely fertile (though not in a fertile couple), of child-bearing age who wants and plans to have children. The not-fertile-couple part will mean it’s more difficult and complicated to get pregnant, but I plan to. Once. And when we want more, we’ll adopt. I do want the experience of being pregnant, of giving birth, and passing on my genes, of my kid looking like me. But once will give me that experience. The desire to have a big family can be achieved just as well by giving children in need a home. And I will find my adopted kids to be no less mine and no less fulfilling, I am sure.

      I feel all these things, and I don’t get the letter-writer’s sorrow either. My thoughts were almost exactly like John’s words. My first instinct was it was terrible to lose the experience pf pregnancy, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have children by adopting. And then “So you did get pregnant? And do have a biological child? So, not totally infertile, then?”

      Don’t misunderstand. I can read the deep pain and distress from the woman who wrote. I’m totally convinced the pain is real. But I also completely don’t understand. It isn’t just John. So many bad things happen to good people – infertility isn’t God’s judgement. Indeed, there is such disparity in the world. And to me, someone being blessed with one biological child doesn’t seem to be on the wrong side of that disparity.

      • Allie

        Christine, I think what you and John are missing here is that it’s an instinctive, physical, hormonal part of the human experience. Saying that one child will give you the experience is like saying that you plan to have sex once, and then when you know what it’s like, you won’t bother a second time. Some women just really, really like being pregnant and having babies and being mothers of young children (which also hits you with hormones that don’t happen to mothers of older children.) There’s beginning to be some evidence that women who really like maternity are physically and mentally different from women who don’t.

        The thing is, we’re still dealing with that mess Victorian glorification of motherhood left us. There’s nothing inherently noble or wonderful or god-sent about that instinct. It’s an instinct. I’ve known a drug addicted prostitute child abuser who really, really loved being a mother and would fight to the death to keep her children. The instinct towards motherhood is no more, and no less, sacred than any other human instinct.

        • http://Www.unnameablecuriosity.wordpress.com Christine

          First, I’m really not missing it altogether. I talked about my own desires to have my own biological child because i want to put it out there that I do feel instinctive desire. No doubt.

          What I hear you saying is that there are some people (the small minority, apparently, given birth rates) of people who feel they need to be pregnant or have small children essentially all the time. Or that having children if never enough and they need to keep having children. That, I do not understand. I expect that my desire be pregnant and have children will, like for most people, be fulfilled by getting pregnant and having children. What you seem to be saying is that this women might just be wired differently than most other people (which would make more sense to me). I reiterate that this doesn’t seem to be about John.

          The idea of having only one child being like only having sex once is absurd. You might have a talented partner between the sheets, but it only lasts so long. Having a child is (hopefully) for the rest of your life.

        • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/johnshore/ John Shore

          AG and Allie: I don’t think I’m “missing” anything at all. First, the yearning to have children is a phenomenon hardly exclusive to women. Second, if it’s true that one can’t comprehend the emotional dynamics at play in a situation unless one has personally experienced that very situation, then … well, then I should stop writing about gay people and abused women, for starters.

          • http://Www.unnameablecuriosity.wordpress.com Christine

            Well, yes, that. I think I got side-tracked by having the first response to me saying I want my own biological kid being that I just have no mothering instinct and so can’t understand what it’s like to want two biological children. (!) It was a touch insulting.

          • Allie

            Can’t really help it that you got insulted. You said that once will give you the experience of being pregnant and giving birth. I stand by my statement that saying that indicates that you don’t understand what you’re talking about. No one said anything about your instinct or lack of it. I also don’t think John understands what he’s talking about, since there are very few men who feel a desperate need to be pregnant and give birth.

          • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/johnshore/ John Shore

            Allie: Really? You’re sticking with the desire of a woman to give birth is so unfathomable to men that it automatically renders invalid anything a man might have to say concerning that desire? Then it follows that you must also hold that men have at least one special yearning so unique to men that anything a woman says about it can only be an expression of ignorance–even though that desire defines men as much as the desire to give birth defines women. Right? Or in your book do women have that much more insight into the male psychology than men can ever hope to have into women’s? Surely you don’t think the two halves of our species so unevenly matched.

            I’m a straight man who loves children. What is it at work in my mind and soul that is so inaccessible to you–so absolutely foreign to anything in your experience–that you can’t even begin to comprehend it, much less comment intelligently upon it?

          • Deb

            Allie, I agree. Given the level of sensivity usually shown by commenters here I’m pretty shocked by the lack of empathy being shown to this writer.. you don’t have to have to have had the experience to show empathy but many of the comments do seem to demonstrate a lack of understanding.

          • Jill

            To say that those here who may be offering another side of the story are wholly lacking understanding is to say that none of us here have been children, have wanted to be parents, have wanted to have better, more loving parents– to want out of life the most basic human needs to feel fulfilled. I must object.

            I have my own personal struggle and life-altering need for change, and God has not brought me that specific blessing ever. Not once. I’ve been praying for it since I was maybe 9 years old, and I’m reaching 40.

            I have blamed God for it–that was what my agnostic stint during my twenties was about. I did the right godly things, found out I didn’t earn the treatment I received as a child, and still I couldn’t get God’s attention for the emptiness that dogged my heels every day.

            I no longer point toward anyone for the important things I lack. I do my best to appreciate what is, and I live around what isn’t.

            Since then other blessings have occurred in my life instead, and no, these have not taken away the overwhelming craving for what I’m still chatting to God about– but I have been helped to find the abundance in what I do have and understand my time table may not be the same as God’s.

            We human beings all share the need for personally important needs to be filled. It’s a tough pill for me to swallow the notion that God parses out blessings based on what some of the talk has been about ‘fair and just’. What exactly about life is promised to us to be fair? That doesn’t mean that God isn’t noticing…and caring…and holding us up through our pain.

          • Lissy

            “Since then other blessings have occurred in my life instead, and no, these have not taken away the overwhelming craving for what I’m still chatting to God about– but I have been helped to find the abundance in what I do have and understand my time table may not be the same as God’s.”

            Perhaps the letter-writer is not at a point where acceptance is. I’m sure she finds joy in her child and at other things, but if the grief process, you have to get to a certain point where you can accept and move on. For some people (not that they are better or worse, or their situation is better or worse than others) the process takes longer.

          • Jill

            Agreed. If anything, my awkwardly written comment was intended to differentiate between an assumption that only a select handful of women have empathy to this challenge and all the rest of us who are also asked to shoulder a burden we would never have chosen for ourselves. This inherently didn’t need to become an ‘us’ and ‘them’ dialog.

            It is hoped that the compassion found in John’s post and in my comments and others were not completely lost by a difference of direction.

          • DR

            That’s my thought as well.

          • Lissy

            Jill- There is one thing that I do dislike about the internet- you cannot see facial expressions, hear tones, or feel the energy of those you are speaking with. This (at least for me) has caused many misunderstandings, and because writing requires words, we have to choose the right ones to convey our feelings. A difficult task when sometimes we can’t think of the words or a situation defies words. When this happens, if we can keep our cools and keep talking, a lot of things can be worked out as I see things happening here. Sometimes there’s just no substitute for a good hug!

          • http://www.cindymurphythinkingoutloud.blogspot.com Cindy

            I think you’ve inflated your emphathy with the letter-writer into something existential or universal when it isn’t. The seemingly common experience is for people’s desire to have children (men or women’s) being fulfilled by actually having them. John and I and other not getting it is not something deficient in us, nor does this mean emphathy would be impossible. Instead, I am trying to understand the condition you are describing, which you admit is something uncommon and specific to women who seem, by your description, to have an addiction-like desire to be pregnant or care for infants. I’m not disputing whether this is real or valid. I do dispute your claim that emphathy or understanding from anyone not experiencing this exact (minority) condition is invalid.

          • http://www.unnameablecuriosity.blogspot.com Christine

            Whoops… That comment was from me.

    • Tim

      Ok, so another guy (and a gay guy at that) jumping in here could be less than wise. I can’t talk about your feelings, but I can say I’m bothered by the response that “this is like a gay person still in the closet asking the pain to be taken away.” And I have a problem for this reason–your infertility is a medical problem–quantifiable and treatable and the like, and my being gay is not a problem.

      I also find that emotions are controllable in a real way, but over a long period. It is a matter of perspective.

      And I guess I don’t know how anyone would blame God for this. Even if it is God doing the denying, and I doubt that directly, but if it is, there is a reason. Why can’t you volunteer at a shelter that serves women and children? What other gifts do you have that you might exercise? How has only having the one child, and struggling over it, made you a better mother? Also, adoption through foster care liscensing, depending upon where you live, can actually result in net positive income to you depending on where you live (I have an aunt who has adopted 15 special needs or troubled kids over the years and is working on numbers 16 and 17 through the foster care system in Arizona).

      The pain has to be real–I know already that I want to be a father and that I’ll have to make the money to adopt. I’m glad I have this clarity, and I’m sorry that you have the difficulty. I just don’t want these two things equated directly. You and those like you are in my prayers.

      • AG

        Tim,

        Good questions. Let me see if I can explain better what I meant… When an adult has a growing desire to have a child of their own, or a child by adoption, that growing desire is not a choice. It comes form within some people and it does not come from within other people. The ‘not a choice’ to be a person who yearns deeply for children VS a person who does not year is the bit I was trying to equate to ‘not a choice’ of being gay. It’s the desire of the heart I was equating.

        And fertility is not always fixable. Even if you are deeply rich, spending tens of thousands of dollars on IF treatments does not guarantee a baby at the end. I am not trying to equate the issue (infertility VS gay) I am trying to equate the emotions and the inability to control and deny and oppress the emotions. The infertile and yearning person (as opposed to childless and happy) feels that their only authentic life is parenting. Teaching / caring for other peoples kids does not fill that gap.

        In my opinion, saying to an infertile and yearning person ‘Oh, deal with it! Fill your life with something else’ is not so different to saying to the gay person “Oh deal with it – be celibate or get into a mixed orientation marriage!’ Both sets of people – the gay and the infertile – know in their hearts what they really want and need and nothing else is going to fill that gap.

        So… if you are infertile, why not adopt? A lot of people would, if they could. But there are a lot fewer babies available than couples waiting. And at what point does the infertile person let it go? When to take yourself off the calendar of trying and on to the waiting list of adoption? And – yes – the next question might be “So why not take an older child out of foster care?” Back to the heart… if the heart is yearning for an infant, an older child is not what is being yearned for.

        My experience with the other big losses in life is that they were more absolute. You lose a person when they die or leave you. But when do you accept that you will not get that baby? At 25, 30, 35, 40? After1,2,5 years of trying? One thing that makes it harder is that there is always hope, always next month. Always hope, followed by despair, followed by hope…

        • http://Www.unnameablecuriosity.wordpress.com Christine

          No AG, generally ALL people have a desire to be in an intimate, romantic relationship, just like most people have a desire to have children.

          Being gay doesn’t in the slightest bit make that desire less or greater. Being gay is no comparison to infertility.

          Much less, being in the closet is *absolutely NO* comparison because being in the closet is about having to hide. When this woman is afraid for her job or housing or safety because she merely admitted she wanted kids, then we can talk comparison. Not before. She isn’t being told that her desire for children is inherently sinful and she will go to hell if she manages to conceive,

          You could compare infertility to unrequited love/wanting to find a spouse. These things are both about that emotional yearning you describe – for gay and straight. (But again, this woman has a child… so maybe it’s more like to the widow/er who can’t find a new spouse.) Being in the closet or being gay is not about that at all.

          • AG

            Christine, Agree totally. “ALL people have a desire to be in an intimate, romantic relationship, ”

            My comparison was between the yearning infertile person being told. “Get over it – take a substitute or put it behind you” and the yearning gay teenager in an oppressive home/church being told “Get over it. This is NOT what you want. There are other things that will make you happy.”

            I did not intend to compare infertility to out and proud, emotionally healthy and self respecting adults. I was trying to draw a parallel between the yearning infertile heart and the fragile not-yet-self-accepting heart of a gay person self-denying because of their religion. Neither will just get over it.

          • http://Www.unnameablecuriosity.wordpress.com Christine

            Thanks, AG. Again, though, it becomes a very narrow, ineffective comparison. It is comparing the rudeness of telling an infertile woman and a gay teenager to just get over it.

            But in the first case, you mean to describe the yearning and inability to have a child – not the insensitivity that comes with it.

            And for the gay teenager, people saying to get over it would be only one of such a (potential) myriad of debilitating problems, especially if they can’t accept themselves – none of which compare to the experience of infertility.

            I think the analogy losses the exact thing it is trying to compare.

          • Molly By Golly

            With agreement that the comparison is troublesome and inappropriet, AG appears to be comparing situations transformed from “curse” into “blessing” with acceptance. Paradoxically, it is often our full submission to suffering that ends our perception of it as such.

        • Tim

          I can’t understand that for sure. I guess I would respond that no situation is absolute. There are always differences between people.

          I guess it is hard to quantify such things. Biology probably isn’t everything about it, but then again, the anti-gay stuff is the same in many ways. It is also my experience via family and friends that you are right that babies are more rare and in more demand than older children.

          I for one can’t stand infants/toddlers. I raised a younger sister to 8 because my Dad and Grandparents were ill and/or neglectful. I’m lucky to not have done her some harm by 5. After that, I had a bit of a blast.

          I guess I just don’t know what to make of the comparison. It makes more sense now, but I’ll have to digest it to be sure of the parallel.

        • woman who wrote this

          AG, again you have explained so well things that I feel and so often think about. People often tell me that I just need to move on with life. I would LOVE to know how to do that. How do I turn off that constant desire? As you said, there is no absolute to it. Hope is always there every month, no matter how hard I try not to think about it.

          It is especially hard when I see my friends and family with their children. It seems all of them have at least 2 children, several with 3 or more. They are well meaning I am sure, but it hurts when they say, “so when are you going to have another?” or “what are you waiting for? you dont want your son to be an only child do you? you know what they say about only children!” and various other hurtful things.

          At any rate, I don’t expect people who havent experienced it to understand. Its just one of those things that I don’t think you can “get” otherwise.

          • http://Www.unnameablecuriosity.wordpress.com Christine

            In some way, I understand the urge to say people just can’t get it unless they experience it. We need to absolutely give primacy to people’s actual experiences of what they go through. But, when those experiences can’t be explained, when “you haven’t been there” starts to come in lieu of an explanation, if just feels like a cop-out.

            But you don’t owe anyone an explanation for why you feel the way you do. You aren’t asking anything of us. So, if you’re satisfied that some of us just don’t get it, then so am I.

          • Tim

            Speaking from what relevant experience I have, writer, you move on by putting one foot in front of the other. You never forget, you never “get over it”, but you grow and move past it.

            One could say the same thing about many other things–I’m 26 and almost all of my friends are engaged or married. Being a gay guy in Western Kansas, I really have no options, and I kind of have to complete this Masters before I move anywhere. Do I want someone, with much the same intensity? You bet I do, but each day I simply have to say to myself “not at this moment, when it is time, if it is ever time, my preparation and work on myself will pay off.” But even with the hope, you do have to resign yourself to the fact that it may never happen.

            As to your “friends and family” they are no friends and family if they are so insensitive when you have told them, or if you are too worried to confide in them. I assume you don’t run in rich circles, so your friends and fam probably wouldn’t pony up the $40k to make the adoption happen and all, but you would think they’d be more loving/understanding and ensure that if your son is the only child, he has plenty of friends/family who understand and is never alone. Just saying.

          • Diana A.

            A couple of thoughts:

            Regarding moving on with life: what if you were to deliberately set aside a certain amount of time each day in which you gave yourself permission to do nothing but think about how much it sucks that you are probably not going to get pregnant again–say no less than 15to min., no more than an hour. At the end of the allotted time, you deliberately put those feelings back into their metaphorical box, knowing that you can come back and think about them again tomorrow. When those feelings and thoughts come up at other times of the day, you can write them down and say to yourself “I will think about this during my mourning time later.”In this way, you’ll be giving time and space to your feelings without allowing them to dominate your life.

          • Diana A.

            Part 2: regarding those people who keep making insensitive remarks about how you should hurry up and have another child–have you leveled with them about your infertility issues? If you have, and they’re still making these kinds of insensitive remarks, it’s time to jettison them–for they are not good for your emotional and mental health.

          • Jill

            Diana A, b0th comments are beautiful.

          • Diana A.

            Thanks Jill!

        • Diana A.

          “But when do you accept that you will not get that baby? At 25, 30, 35, 40? After1,2,5 years of trying? One thing that makes it harder is that there is always hope, always next month. Always hope, followed by despair, followed by hope…”

          Yeah, I can see that. To my knowledge, I am fertile but I have refrained from having children because I am both unwealthy and unmarried. Now I am in my mid-forties and even if I do get married and/or get a decent income, I’m not sure it would be in the best interests of any child who might result for me to get pregnant.

          I’m most okay with this. I’ve come to terms with the fact that having a baby just may not be in the cards for me. But when I see other women having babies, I admit to feeling jealous.

          • Diana A.

            I left the “ly” off of “mostly.” Grrrrrrr!

          • Elizabeth

            I’m not sure it would be in the best interests of my child, either. I’m mostly okay with it. I love my friends’ babies with my whole heart. I’ve accepted that may be as close as I get to my own. It was a long grieving process.

          • Jill

            Yes, there is that empty space that doesn’t completely fill. I do get that. And I don’t know what is the secret, the magic to alleviating the constant longing for something we cannot seem to grasp. If I ever do, I will be sure to share it.

  • woman who wrote this

    Thanks, John, for your response. Though, I admit that when I was struggling with infertility the first time, I would have hated someone like me now complaining about not being able to have a second child.. all I can say to that is the grass is always greener on the other side, until you get to the other side and you realize it isnt! Anyway, I guess I didn’t really clearly communicate my feelings in the letter. They are very deep feelings, and they are hard to express. First, I will say, I would love to adopt, but as one person has already commented, it is ridiculously expensive, and I can not afford it. As far as my logic about God’s fairness, I see your point. However, there still seems to be no standard for how he blesses people. I mean, some people are clearly blessed more than others and it seems pretty random to me. I know that I might have great rewards in store for me in heaven, but that is not what I am talking about. Here, now, on Earth, there is such disparity. I don’t just mean in how many children God blesses you with. I mean in everything. I guess almost everyone struggles with something, and my struggle in infertility. I don’t understand how an all loving God can allow His children to hurt so much. Repeatedly. I know I am all over the place with this. Again, this runs very deep for me, but hopefully this clarifies somewhat.

    • Courtney

      You can adopt through the Dave Thomas Foundation. It’s not free, but it’s about as close as one can get.

    • Lissy

      As I said in response to someone else’s comment, I’m not infertile (as far as I know) but I have had a very debilitating illness (I’m basically housebound) for almost half my life. After living life as a dancer and very active person. I understand your “why”s. It is gut-wrenching. Perhaps the best comment I’ve read here is “It is okay to be heartbroken. It is okay to want your own children. I do not think she should be made to feel guilty for these feeling because we all think she should just go adopt.” It seems again that some people commenting here are telling you not to feel the way you’re feeling. That’s insulting. Like you, I know all the Christian “answers” and advice. And the non-Christian “answers” and advice. Not every day is horrible. I am blessed in many ways as you are. But on THOSE days (you know the ones I mean), nothing makes sense. There’s a grief and emptiness that won’t go away, even on the good days. I don’t have the words to make you feel better. I wish I did. So I will send you an internet hug and say your suffering is real.

      • woman who wrote this

        Lissy – THANK YOU and hugs back to you!

  • maria

    Is it possible that God did not want her to be infertile? I mean, people have all kinds of terrible diseases and disabilities and it is not because God wanted them to have them. I think there is a chance that as humans, we have created an environment where things go wrong and people have physical issues that really suck. I think that Gods heart is breaking for her. I think that God knows her pain and is not inflicting it on her for some reason that has yet to be seen.

    Yes, maybe God hopes she can find fulfillment in adoption or working with other peoples kids, etc… but it would be pretty shitty of him to break her heart, over and over again, on purpose, just to have someone who will volunteer with the youth group.

    It is okay to be heartbroken. It is okay to want your own children. I do not think she should be made to feel guilty for these feeling because we all think she should just go adopt.

    But, lady who wrote this letter, I think that God is holding on to you, with both hands and will never let go. I think he feels your tears and is sorry that your body is not cooperating. It seems easy to think that if God loves you, he would just give you a baby. But it doesn’t work like that. We are never promised that things will go easily for us. In fact, I think the Bible says that things are going to be pretty tough. What we are promised is that God will not leave us. God loves us and even in our sorrow, is always there. No matter what.

    I hope you are able to have another child. I also hope, that if that does not happen, that you are able to take solace in God and know that he cares.

    • Sharla

      No, I don’t think that God would MAKE a person infertile so they can do just about anything else. But if the circumstances of their life is that they are infertile (in my case it’s my husband who is infertile, due to some past misbehavior on his part, most likely), God can work in that situation to bring about good. I don’t believe that we’re infertile so that I can work with others’ kids. But I think that the good of the situation is that I’m able to do that work because we don’t have kids of our own, so it’s God bringing some good out of something that was heartbreaking.

  • Barbara Rice

    I’m having a problem with the writer’s reasoning about why she should be granted her desires. It seems to be centered around believing that God should give “deserving” people (i.e. Christians) what they ask for; non-deserving people (i.e. drug addicts) should not get those things instead. It features God as a benevolent but capricious Santa Claus.

    Obviously the writer is in real pain over this – a particular pain I am not capable of sharing because I’ve never wanted children, not ever. But I have wanted things very, very badly that I didn’t get, things that simply were not going to happen. It was heartbreaking to lose people in my life, to have people treat me badly, to be at the center of horrible situations I strongly felt I did not deserve.

    Those miseries and losses were emotionally crippling at the time. But eventually time passes – because it always does – and for better or worse, I learned to accept what happened. I stopped wanting those things because it was utterly pointless to continue to want it. Eventually I was able to start facing life beyond those things I had wanted. I’m not going to say, “And everything is just great now!” There are losses that are still profound, people who cannot be replaced, feelings damaged severely that are still somewhat raw.

    But I see now the things that were allowed to happen that would never have had a chance without those terrible times behind me. I won’t say I look back on the worst pits of depression and sadness fondly, or with a wry shake of my head. I do keep moving forward, though; focusing on “Why was he so mean? Why did she have to die? How could they have done that to me?” is continuing to dig the same hole over and over again.

  • http://www.facebook.com/lisa.kratzer Lisa Kratzer via Facebook

    You know…Hannah thought the same thing, I’m sure…and then God gave her Samuel, and he went on to become one of the most important Old Testament judges. Except Hannah waited much longer than 3 years… and look at Sarah. She was in her 90′s before she finally had Isaac, her firstborn – and look what came of that. God can use and has used women with fertility issues to accomplish great things.

  • Lana

    My husband and I tried for more than 2 years to conceive before success. I had a textbook pregnancy and gave birth to my wonderful son 16 1/2 years ago. We could not have been more thrilled. He is truly a blessing and 2 years later we decided we were ready to start trying again. In the next few years I suffered a total of 5 miscarriages. I prayed and begged God to send me another child to love over and over again. Each time I miscarried I was devastated and on occasion angry with God. People would say hurtful things meaning to help. These things included: “At least you have your son,” “God knew there was something wrong with that one,” and “at least you didn’t have to hold it and lose it.” All of these were the wrong words. I am blessed with my son; but, he isn’t the child I hoped for and lost. God gives blessings, He does not take them away. The people that intimated that are well meaning; but, at a vulnerable time it turns blame/anger toward God at a time when He is needed the most. As to the last, I held those children in my heart and it was a real loss. Infertility is a difficult and heartbreaking thing with which to deal. It is difficult to want with all of your heart a child and not have one of your own to love. Adoption was not an option for me and my husband and neither was more expensive fertility treatments since we are a family of modest means. I continued to pray for God to give another child. He answered our prayers; but, not in the way I expected. I have a cousin who has issues with substance abuse and she had a baby girl that she neglected and did not want. The state removed the girl from my cousin’s home and my husband and I stepped forward to care for her. My daughter was 18 months old when she came to live with us. In many ways her delivery was more painful and difficult than a physical birth; but, she is a gift from God we adore. Our daughter was traumatized from extreme neglect and mistreatment. She had development issues from the neglect; but, was spared the other issues that could have resulted from my cousin’s habits. Our daughter needed a family who loved her and we wanted more than anything another child to love. My son from the time he could talk would ask for a little sister and now he has one that thinks he is the greatest. God answered our prayers and if you have faith He will your prayers as well. Maybe not in the way you want or expect; but, it will happen. It maybe His plan for you is something different than caring for a child of your own; however, if you keep yourself open to His plan you will find your fulfillment. Our pain does not come from God. He will bring peace, healing and blessings to you.

    • Lana

      Obviously I meant another child of your own.

    • David S

      Lana, that is a beautiful story. Thank you so much for sharing it. People say really stupid things to suffering people. Perhaps the best response is to hold hands and weep together.

  • http://www.facebook.com/KJoyBunn Karen Bunn via Facebook

    Fertility is not just in your ovaries–it’s in your heart and mind. There is so much that can be brought to fruition in one’s life that is as important as becoming a parent. If you continue to obsess about what you don’t have, you’ll miss everything you could have.

  • Kirsten A.S. Mebust via Facebook

    Perhaps it isn’t true as the Hebrew Bible suggests that God opens and closes wombs. Perhaps that was 1) only some wombs, or 2) in the absence of much information about conception, their closest approximation to science. (We don’t accept other such explanations; no one puts spotted rods in the stream where the pregnant sheep drink in order to make spotted lambs any more.) Perhaps there are all kinds of reasons having to do with God’s world’s being allowed to be itself that mean not everyone who wants a baby gets one and not everyone who gets a baby wants one. Rather than focusing on what God has not given, it makes sense to look around the world and ask what God is calling you to do; including, yes, adopting children or teaching them or perhaps even doing research into the causes and cures of infertility.

  • http://Www.cindymurphythinkingoutloud.blogspot.com Cindy

    I’m really curious about all the comments about the high cost of adoption there. I found that very surprising. Is this just the result of paying for medical care for the mother? (I’m from Canada where the government provides healthcare) Or are there actually large fees associated with adoption there? I have an adopted niece. My brother and his wife adopted her internationally, which of course was rather pricey, but they could afford it and did so to circumvent the ridiculously long wait list to adopt an infant or toddler locally. There were no large fees associated with a local adoption but the wait list was another matter standing at I believe 12 years when they looked into it versus start to finish of the process for the international adoption being about 2 years.

    • Allie

      I’ve been told by friends that the usual cost is about 40k. That’s for international. If you want a domestic white baby, it ain’t happening, but you can adopt a domestic black or mixed race baby for about the same.

      • http://Www.unnameablecuriosity.wordpress.com Christine

        A. Wildly disturbed at race being a determinent for how much babies cost.

        B. Wildly disturbed that babies “cost” anything.

        C. 40k+?? Whose actually making money off this?

        D. You’re just talking babies, right? All those kids in foster care aren’t waiting for propestive parents to first raise essentially their annual income, right?

        • Courtney

          There are grants available to adopt foster care kids. It’s as close to free as you can get.

        • Allie

          The adoption agencies are making a disgustingly large amount of money. Particularly internationally. If you think some poor Chinese woman isn’t being pressured to give up her child by the agency making a fortune, you’re in a fantasy land.

          Foster care is its own thing. Generally they pay you. But becoming a foster parent with the intention of adopting is not a good idea. Foster children generally have parents, and the child is not yours to keep.

          • Courtney

            There are many foster kids without parents who are waiting to be adopted. Google the Dave Thomas Foundation for more info.

          • http://Www.unnameablecuriosity.wordpress.com Christine

            Yeah, but you did mean adoption within the US, right? It is just a free-for-all there on private adoption? Is adoption big business within the US? (Not that that should surprise me, I suppose… but selling babies does seem a new low.)

            And can’t people adopt older kids in the system? I mean, without fostering, just adopting?

          • http://www.facebook.com/john10423 John Gragson

            They can, and sometimes do. But generally foster parents are offered first crack at adoption when the CYS agency (or DSS, or DYFS, or whatever it’s called where you are) finally goes for termination of the parents’ rights–Allie is correct that this is considered under the law a last resort. I kind of object to the suggestion that people shouldn’t foster because it doesn’t always result in adoption, though. Isn’t that putting the selfish desire to “be a parent” over the more Christian end of providing unconditional love to a child in need?

          • Diana A.

            Yes, it is selfish to refuse to foster because it doesn’t always result in adoption, but for some people, it’s just too painful to have a child come into their lives, fall in love with that child and then have that child go back to biological parents who may or may not have resolved the issues that lead to the child being put into the foster care system in the first place.

      • http://Www.cindymurphythinkingoutloud.blogspot.com Cindy

        You can’t be serious? That has to be like a black market fee? I can’t see how $40K for adopting children can possibly be any thing other than buying babies. It cost my brother and his wife all of about $10K to adopt from Thailand and that included the roughly $6K they spent on airfare. Since that time the Thai government has gone the route of other international adoption destinations and added a government fee to the cost (I think it’s around $8K, which is sad considering the number of children in orphanages in Thailand and the pretty much non-existent rate of local adoption) but even with that added fee it would still be less than half the cost of what you are telling me someone has to pay to adopt a somehow less desirable baby within the US. (I can’t express how disturbing I find the concept that a black or mixed-race baby would be less desirable in the first place, much less that a monetary amount could be put on how much less desirable.)

      • Susan in NY

        Dear Letter Writer,

        I had one bio kid, at great expense to my health. After his birth, for various long and complicated reasons, I am left with a chronic illness and I could not have any more children.

        To be honest, the loss of being able to have another bio kid was a non-issue for me. I was so grateful just to have one healthy child, when I knew many other women will never be able to do so. And I was thankful that I was alive, and he was healthy, as my underlying illness could have really messed up both of us.

        In regard to Allie’s comment, it certainly can happen that one can adopt a healthy baby of any race. Now-ex husband and I adopted our second child domestically. We did an independent adoption. We put ads in papers all over the country. This by far was the most expensive part of the adoption. It took around 9 months of advertising until we found our son’s birthmother, and she found us. We started at $500 a month for advertising, and as the months went by, we increased the amount to $1000 per month.

        If we were crazy rich, we could have spend any amount of money per month. If we spent $15,000 on the first month, it is quite possible that we might have found a birthmother who wanted to make an adoption plan. The more you can spend on advertising, the faster you can find a birthmother who wants to make an adoption plan for her unborn child. On the other hand, if one is very lucky, one might find a potential birth mother in the first month of advertising.

        Our lawyer guided us through the process. Lawyer’s fees for adoption are capped in NY and at the time, I recall his fee was about $5000.

        We were instructed that under no circumstances were we to give any money, or pay for any expenses for the potential birthmother. There is a way to legally pay for some of the potential birthmother’s expenses, but everything must go through the lawyer so it is all legal. We were not in the position to pay birthmother expenses, so if that had been the case, this would not have been the baby for us.

        In our case, the potential birthmother was adamant that she not receive any monetary help from us. She never wanted her child to think that she “sold” him, even though we told her that any funds we provided would be for her living expenses and the like, and that they had to go through the lawyer.

        All of her medical costs were covered by the state she lives in.

        She chose her own lawyer to represent her, and we paid his fee. We never spoke to him. I think his fee was about $2000.

        Other expenses included a trip across the country to meet potential birth mom and birth dad. We offered to visit them, in order that they could be even more comfortable with the choice of adoptive parents. Frankly, the four of us got along very well. LOL. Talk about a strange dinner – potential birth mom and birth dad, potential adoptive mom and adoptive dad, and baby-in-the-belly, for whom we were all there.

        The final adoption related expenses were for our flight and hotel when we went to meet our son. As it turned out, he spent 11 days in the NICU, so I had to stay at the hospital while my husband went back to care for our other son. One could search for a potential birthmom locally if travel expenses were out of the question.

        I don’t recall, but either her state or our health insurance paid for the baby’s NICU fees.

        The birthmother could not sign away her parental rights until 72 hours after the baby was born. Unfortunately, she was also still in the hospital, in the ICU, due to problems with the birth. Her lawyer came to her room and went over the long and detailed forms regarding permanent relinquishment of her parental rights. She was under no pressure to sign, and her lawyer was there to make her aware of all her rights, including her right to petition the court to have the child returned to her if she changed her mind about parenting within the first thirty days.

        Not that the baby would be returned to her, it simply allows her to hire a lawyer to petition the court to re-establish her parental rights. It was a nerve wracking thirty days, even though, in the end, if she contacted us and told us she wanted to parent, we would have willingly returned the baby to her – he is her birth child after all, and was are not in the habit of taking babies that have parents who are capable and desire to parent.

        In the end, she has turned out to be the best birth-mom we could expect for our son. She only wants the best for him. She loves him, but she did not want to parent him. And now, she and I have friended each other on Facebook. LOL I never thought that would be the case. We are cordial and very loving towards each other. I know that she is so happy that we are the parents, and we are so happy to have our wonderful son, who can someday meet his birthmom.

        That is my experience. It was stressful. But frankly, not as stressful as my high risk pregnancy and horrifically long and painful labor and delivery.

        Susan in NY

        • http://kellythinkstoomuch.wordpress.com KellyK

          Thank you for sharing your story. I’m glad it worked out so well for you and your family.

          I think that sounds like the best possible way to adopt a child. I know that social workers and adoption agencies can put a lot of pressure on unwed mothers into giving up their babies, so advertising to let the birthmom contact you and having an open adoption sounds like a way of avoiding a lot of the potential for exploitation.

    • http://www.facebook.com/jesse.tee.9 boy jesse

      i have always maintained that if people who are SO vehemently opposed to abortion would expend even a tenth of the energy they expend fighting abortion rights towards finding “forever homes” for the countless children languishing in often sub-standard foster homes, their opinions would be FAR more credible.

      There is good reason, after all, for the countless masses to view the stereotypical Republican/Tea Party platform as “love the blastocyst/embryo/fetus; Couldn’t care less about the child after it’s born”.

      i wholly agree that the adoption process in the States is depressingly expensive and cumbersome. However, if you don’t like how the system works, the logical choice is to work towards improving the process – making it less expensive, less difficult to navigate, etc.

      • Jill

        thankyouthankyouthankyou Jesse.

      • Bmac

        Amen to this!

      • http://www.facebook.com/john10423 John Gragson

        Nicely stated, Jesse.

  • Seana

    As an infertile woman who only ever managed to get pregnant once in years and years of trying and then lost the baby at 8 weeks, I completely agree with John.

    Of course the desire to have a child is a deep desire as we are biologically programmed to want children. And there was a very painful time when I grieved for the children I couldn’t have. But my whole relationship with God is that he does not give me what I want just because I want it. And indeed, not everything that happens to me is in fact about me. God has a whole world he is taking care of and you may very well have a completely different purpose than giving birth.

    Life is not fair. But that doesn’t mean that God has cursed or forsaken us. He has not forsaken the child with terminal cancer, he has not forsake the veteran missing both his legs, he has not forsaken the young woman with a brain aneurysm that paralyzed her whole body. And he certainly has not forsaken the infertile women in the world.

    Of course a person doesn’t want to hear this. In the midst of the normal grieving process you do not want to hear that you should not feel what you feel. Because of course you should feel angry, depressed, and disappointed. These are justifiable and valid feelings and you will never get to the point of acceptance without going through them. But at some point you must get to acceptance, and then open your heart to hear what God wants from you.

  • Matt

    I’m afraid I have very little sympathy for the letter writer. It’s as you said, John: While her pain is great, her sense of entitlement is high.

    I’m sorry, this one touched a nerve. Maybe it’s just me thinking about all I will have to go through just to have and raise child of my own. I apologize If I’m more acidic than usual, and if I’m out of line just let me know.

    Letter writer: You are where you are. They (other people) are where they are. Asking “Why?” constantly will only drive you crazy. Enjoy your son (I mean this kindly)–I’m sure he is a beautiful light in your life.

  • Deanna Rendel

    I’ve been there and the responses seem a bit harsh. I have two children, whom I thank God for every day. I loved being a Mom and wanted one more, but after 5 miscarriages I had to stop trying…it was the most painful time in my life. John, I disagree, you don’t know this pain unless you’ve been there, it’s not the same as empathizing with gay people or abused women. I really don’t think a man can completely understand, sorry, but you’ve never been pregnant, you’ve never nursed a baby, you don’t have the same hormones running through your body. The fact that she has one child does not make it any easier, it just makes it hard to reach out to the infertility support groups of people who don’t have even one child. She has all my sympathy.

    • http://Www.unnameablecuriosity.wordpress.com Christine

      Why is abuse and sexual orientation not a barrier to empathy, but gender-specific hormones somehow make it impossible?

      • http://www.facebook.com/jesse.tee.9 boy jesse

        my question exactly, Christine. i am not trying to be judgmental, just trying to wrap my brain around it.

        • http://www.facebook.com/john10423 John Gragson

          good question, Christine. there’s a lot of entrenched sexism about parenthood/motherhood even among liberals, i’ve observed. i’m not commenting about the original post because i don’t feel like having my head bitten off.

          • Jill

            Probably for the best John, since it’s tough being a woman in this conversation. :)

      • Diana A.

        Almost off-topic, but not really:

        Many years ago, my dad had his first heart attack and started his road to eventual death. For much of his life, he had been a hearty, healthy construction worker. Now all of a sudden, he couldn’t even eat his food without having it cut up for him. If he cut his own food, he no longer had the strength left to eat it. Keep in mind that all this was in the late sixties, early seventies, when notions of gender roles were even more entrenched than they are now. My dad had worked for a living since he was 11 years old. Now, he couldn’t work and was completely dependent on my mother. Can you imagine the humiliation? He used to say to my mom “I’m no longer a man.” My mom would say “What do you mean you’re no longer a man? You’ve had five kids–of course you’re a man.” But to my father, the fact that he couldn’t work for a living, couldn’t even cut his own food, meant that he was no longer a man.

        For women (a lot of us, at least) the ability to have a baby is what it means to be a woman. This may be silly, but it’s how we feel. To then not be able to have a baby is devastating. A woman might find herself thinking or feeling “I’m no longer a woman,” or “I’m not really a woman,” just like my dad didn’t think he was a man anymore because he couldn’t work for a living.

  • Jill

    I truly mean no disrespect, and I will concede immediately that my comment may come across as insensitive or lacking understanding, but I am a seemingly fertile woman that chooses not to have children (for reasons that are my own). I don’t have the experience of pregnancy hormones to empathize either, but I do have another side of the coin.

    I found myself a bit incredulous—the comment was a trigger for me—at the statement that the letter writer does not have insurance or money to afford more treatments. My opinionated opinion is that perhaps then you don’t have enough resources to raise another child right now.

    I know from whence I speak, raised in a poverty-stricken, single parent home with 2 siblings. It SUCKS having the fear of not knowing how your parent will make sure you have the necessities of life at age 6. Not making assumptions of your finances, just extrapolating from what you have said.

    I don’t know what God is saying to you specifically in this situation, but there are other valid perspectives to take as to why pregnancy is not happening instead of being ‘God’s unfairness’. I’m merely suggesting that the space of gratitude for what you do have opens more doors to abundance and richness of life than does disappointment for what you feel you lack. I completely understand what it’s like to desperately desire things that you cannot seem to grasp. I truly wish you peace on your journey.

  • Brian Orrock McHugh via Facebook

    “God” has nothing to do with infertility. Human biology is human biology. Period. Sometimes it “works” and sometimes it doesn’t – human biology isn’t “perfect”. Get a grip.

    • Lissy

      Even though you have different views than the woman who wrote this letter, callousness and rudeness is never called for.

  • Cyndi Kramer via Facebook

    Several years ago, before I made the final step to embracing my atheism, I was in throes of infertility. One of the worst things ever said to me during that time was “If god wants you to have a child, he will give you one”. The message I took from that was “Even god doesn’t think you would be a good mom”. Not very comforting. In any case, science stepped in and gave me two fantastic boys.

    • Lissy

      “One of the worst things ever said to me during that time was “If god wants you to have a child, he will give you one”.”

      I’m so sorry someone said that to you. I’m not infertile (as far as I know- I haven’t tried yet and have never been married) but I have had a very debilitating chronic illness for almost 15 years now. I just turned 33, so that’s almost half my life. Before I got sick, I was a dancer and very sports oriented. Many people (other Christians) have said, “You’re just not praying hard enough”, “if you just believed enough”, “if you had enough faith”, and yes, “if God wants you to be well, he’ll heal you.” Those kinds of things are the worst things to say to someone who is suffering, physically or emotionally. I’m sure some people throw those things out there to move on to a more “happy” subject, but some I think really believe those things based on their experience and really ARE trying to help. Sometimes sitting in silence with someone who is suffering is better.

      I am so happy that you had your two boys, though!

      • Jill

        *sitting in silence with you Lissy*

        • Lissy

          Thank you, Jill!

  • http://Nothingisayisoriginal.con Cindy

    I was there myself seven years trying to get pregnant. It is very painful. I can say now 20 years after starting the journey to becoming a mom I would that I would not change a thing. .! (maybe a memo from God telling me what was to come, although I probably would have tried to tweek the plan if I knew and Gods plan is always better than mine). We have 5 kids all adopted we did one private adoption which is pricey and the money from the organization we used went to charitable things as well as counceling for us and the birth mom etc… Our kids all Rock. We have been foster parents and that has been awesome and adoption through foster care was cost free. Our kids would not be who they are as well as me being the mom my kids need because of the Journey we had. Our life is way better than my plan was. We also have the gift of birth families in our lives. I can not explain what a joy it is to have this connection. I can’t speak for anyone else only myself and my life is awesome. Up down and all around sometimes. Today I am more than ok with not having biological children. I had to let go and let God. We are truly blessed!

  • http://www.facebook.com/gina.cirelli.1 Gina Cirelli via Facebook

    I guess I just don’t understand why people have to keep having babies. In my opinion, there are too many already! http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Voluntary-Human-Extinction-Movement-VHEMT/158547474186448

  • woman who wrote this

    I kind of wish I would have just posed a question about blessings since that is what this is really about to me. What is a blessing? “To be blessed” means ‘to be favored by God’. That statement in itself shows God as being unfair – that he favors some people more than others . . . and I want to know why. Or are things actually just pretty random like it seems most the time. Thats what this whole thing is really about to me. One person commented that asking why will only drive you constantly crazy. So what am I supposed to do? To me, this goes to the very nature of God and I quite honestly do not want to believe in a God that plays favorites for no reason. I see people saying I have a sense of entitlement or that I expect that God should bless Christians, etc. Well… yes, and no. I believe it is in the book of Psalm that it says “Children are gift from the Lord”. Philippians 4:6 says, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Psalm 37:4 says “Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart”. I don’t know. I am going all over the place again. Its hard for me to stay focused on this issue because my feelings are all wrapped up in it. I will say, I am very thankful for my son, and I certainly do enjoy him everyday. The joy that he gives me is certainly one reason that I desire to have another. I do not feel I am “owed” another child. I think everyone should be able to have as many children as they want and are able to care for. Speaking of that, I will quickly address another comment suggesting that if I can not afford treatment or adoption, I can not afford to raise another child. This is not true. The difference is money upfront to afford treatment/adoption vs. money made over a lifetime to raise a child. Again, I am all over the place, but I hope you are able to understand what I am generally trying to get at.

    • Gretchen

      Hi Dear!

      I’ll be frank, I am a one kid mom, and I love it. But that’s me. I’m sorry that you are going through this struggle. And you need to understand that this is exactly what it is. It’s not a punishment from anything. It’s a biological issue that people go through a lot. Why? Well, I think it could be artificial things we consume, but again….that’s me. These struggles are what it is to be human. It sucks. It hurts, and it sometimes royally pisses me off. And in those times, we get to turn to God and ask Him why. Then he usually tells us something through our thoughts, or scripture, and sometimes it’s just something in front of our face. Whatever it is, God’s voice isn’t going to tell you to get a grip like someone said earlier. It’s going to say “here’s my shoulder. Lean on me and trust me with your burden.”

      Whether or not that faith in leaning on Him gives you a baby or not, I can’t answer that. What I do know is that the procedures you have done have not been in vain, and if you get the chance to try for treatment again, wonderful! But if God wants to open a door with other options, then just sit and listen for that voice. Maybe He’s seeing that you’re up to the challenge of something different! But it is NOT a punishment. Prayers for your journey to whatever God has in store for you!

      • Matt

        I think God gives us these kind of struggles to soften our hearts. Don’t we say in church: “The Lord gives, and the Lord takes away?”

        Think about it. If you had simply conceived three children without treatment, one right after the other, what kind of compassion could you have for an infertile friend? Very little, I’d imagine. It’s not that you’re a bad person, just that we as human beings find it hard to imagine things we’ve never experienced. But you’ve gotten the best of both worlds. You have indeed received a desire of your heart, but not without painful struggle, and you can reach out to others in your situation.

        I don’t know, I’ve just found that I find myself paradoxically grateful for the struggles in my life. What you have separates you from the have-nots. But compassion builds bridges.

        And I’m sorry if I was less than kind with my earlier comment. It was an angry reaction, but I need to be responsible for my feelings.

    • Elizabeth

      Hi, woman who wrote this. Thanks for coming out from behind John’s Wizard-of-Oz curtain and engaging commenters directly. I’m going to skip everyone else’s story. Clearly, this is an emotional issue for many of us. I’ll just share mine.

      I’m an only daughter of an only daughter. Her parents were blue-collar, and she earned the money for her undergraduate degree herself. She waited until she was 36 to have me. I, too, want a child. I always have. I’m 38 now. I have no reason to think I can’t bear and raise a child later in life, like my mother. I should probably start with getting health insurance.

      But your last comment, “I can not afford to raise another child. This is not true. The difference is money upfront to afford treatment/adoption vs. money made over a lifetime to raise a child,” bothers me. My parents were both educators. My mom taught alternative ed – first offenders, pregnant teenagers, potheads – when I was very young. There were no security guards; she and one other woman would demand guns and knives from kids and they’d hand them over. Many would consider that inappropriate exposure for nursery-school-age me, but for Mom it was just another day at the office.

      My mother and father (he was a copy editor and journalism professor) worked two and three jobs for twenty years in order to pay for my education. It was important to them. It was their definition of how to raise a child properly. It meant I went to computer and piano and ballet lessons. I went away to performing arts camp by 7. I went to the gifted program at their alma mater every summer starting at 9. (Mom was a little worried I read The Autobiography of Malcolm X that early.) They were all cost-prohibitive for most families.

      At 12, I made my first “adult” decision and insisted on going to a public high school. They were ready to pay for private school, and by “ready” I mean they had the tuition in their savings accounts and the research on their desks. They allowed me to overrule them because, as educators as well as parents, they trusted my reasoning ability. That public high school, brand new and dirt poor when I started, now has three Grammy awards and a Westboro Baptist Church protest to its credit. The friends I made there are second only to my parents in shaping who I am today.

      From there, I went to Carnegie Mellon, arguably the best theatre conservatory in the country; Sarah Lawrence, a liberal arts college founded on the Oxford model and still the most expensive school in the country; and Oxford itself. My parents paid the tuition for all of them. They started with a financial plan before I was born. In 1996 dollars, when I graduated college, that meant $100K. Today, it would be $200K. Those schools would have been out of reach had I not been an only child. Schools like that are options I want to give my child.

      I’m the first to admit education is not a panacea. My parents’ devotion to education before all else had drawbacks. I was a lonely latch-key kid. I still don’t play well with others. Most of my closest friends attended lesser universities and are far more successful than I. But, for my parents, raising someone who could think critically and appreciate the arts was paramount. They did it once. Whatever your personal priorities are, please don’t wait until later to figure out how you’re going to pay to raise your child(ren).

    • Diana A.

      Just a general comment–not necessarily specific to your situation. One of the things I’ve been taught is that we are blessed to be a blessing. In other words, the blessings that we receive are meant to be shared with others. It isn’t that God likes some people better than others. It’s that God blesses specific people with the understanding that these people will bless others with their blessings. Like I say, this may not be pertinent to your situation, but it is what I have been taught.

  • Ellen

    Doesn’t it seem that part of the Christian journey is coming up against a blank wall? We ask, pray, beg for what we want, and God seems silent. Oh, this is so hard! Waiting is hard. Learning to listen is hard. Not getting your way is hard. Giving up your sense of control is hard. Dealing with disappointment is hard. Trusting our lives to God is hard. But these hard times can turn us toward God, if we will let them. Reading God’s words in the Bible for comfort and strength (for example, Romans 8, or the book of Psalms), and spending time listening to God will develop your character and will help you to have courage and hope during your distress. Most of the time, there is no sudden cure, no miracle, just a tough slog through grief, pain, and worry. And then one day, probably not very soon, but still, you will come out the other side, having lived through it, and having gained priceless gifts which you won from the struggle. This is your crucifixion. Will you go through it to the resurrection?

    • Jill

      Beautiful

  • Maria

    Wow. There are some mean people on here. No one has any right to tell her that her feelings aren’t valid, and that is what half if you are doing. Stop being jerks. she came here for spiritual support and got criticized. Pathetic.

  • Don Rappe

    God seems to have given us our instincts for the survival of our species, rather than our individual satisfaction. I frequently experience my own in relation to those of others as conflict. It is because God’s way is not my way that I need to pray “Thy will be done.” When I am an infant, many of my infantile desires are God’s will for me, but as I mature, I adapt more to the situation in which I am placed. One of 5 women is Chinese and adapts to having one child, so that there will be sufficient provisions for all the children. This is not done by instinct alone.

  • Deb Curnock via Facebook

    Christ, I hope the writer is feeling strong when she reads these comments- or better, doesn’t read them at all!

  • http://kellythinkstoomuch.wordpress.com KellyK

    Letter Writer, I’m really sorry for your pain and your struggle. You totally have a right to feel what you feel.

    I tend to think that it’s not helpful to look at every situation in your life as God either punishing or blessing you. Both because God can bring good out of bad situations and because it can make you wonder “What did I do? Why is God mad at me?” when the thing that’s happening isn’t about that at all. I think one of the big lessons from Job is that bad things that happen to you are not necessarily punishment, or the result of anything you’ve done. They just are.

    I wish I had a good answer for you on “why” because I know “these things just happen sometimes” isn’t much comfort.

  • Elizabeth Potter Graham via Facebook

    God does not have a plan for anyone’s life. That’s fiction to make people feel significant. Anyone who thinks children are a reward or punishment for our behavior needs to enter the Age of Enlightenment ASAP. Fertility is biological, as Brian McHugh says above, and is affected by brain and glandular chemistry.

    A decision to have a child is a personal choice, and not a stranger’s business. If you choose not to have children, be my guest.

    • Childless

      It is best that you do not speak about the One you obviously do not know. Yes fertility is biological. Sorry but I know the One who put biology in place. He also puts in His Word that it is His privelege to open the womb of a woman, ie give her children. I believe both are true. Yes, the decision to have a child is personal but sharing loss with people who might understand is both human and empowering. I am truly sorry you have never heard from God in your heart, for if you had, you would realize that every human is profoundly significant, whether they feel it or not.

  • Karen

    I’ve been there. I have asked these questions. I have sat in the fertility doc’s office and wondered the same things. I have felt the same sharp pangs of sadness when friends announced that they were pregnant – not once, but twice – as my husband and I tried for years to conceive. I went through years of infertility with nothing to show for it but a hefty drain on our savings. After seven years, we gave up. I felt defeated and, frankly, abandoned by God. Why did He do this to me? I was sad and angry at Him.

    It took several years of deep reflection, prayer and soul searching to realize that He had different plans for me – and had all along. All those years of fertility I had been fighting Him. It felt like I had been pushing a boulder up a hill. But when I realized what His plan is for me, everything fell into place. I was supposed to adopt. It all became crystal clear one day. And when it did, I felt so light, so happy and so at peace. The process was relatively easy and everything fell into place. I felt God’s presence throughout it all and could feel His grace.

    Our daughter is divine in every sense of the word. She is my gift from God and truly the answer to my prayers.

  • Judy

    As an ob /gyn I have struggled with this same problem. Why do crackhead teens get pregnant at the drop of a hat and my loving stable patients can’t? It breaks my heart. As for the writers comment that she is judged because she is not happy with having at least one child, it makes me think of author Susan Isaacs comment that, while she knows her problems are those of a “middle class white girl” , they are still her problems and they hurt. I would encourage her to look at God’s answer to Job when he asked why. At least to my brain,the answer was that there is so much we do not understand and we just need to hold on to God through it all. Jobs friends got it wrong when they said bad things happened for a reason or for a sin that Job committed. The writers problem is really the universal problem of pain.

    • woman who wrote this

      YES – that is what I really wanted to ask about – the universal problem of pain/the problem of evil – that is- how to reconcile the existence of evil/pain with that of a deity who is omnipotent, omniscient and omnibenevolent.

      Anyhow, thanks Judy for your reply and the reminder that Job did indeed struggle for seemingly no reason, but was rewarded in the end for staying faithful to God.

      • Kristi

        I have been there. In fact, I just wrote a 10 paragraph response, and my daughter asked for some juice, I bumped my computer, and it disappeared. Argghh.

        Like Maria says in The Sound of Music, “Whenever God closes a door, he always opens a window.”

        I come from a family and friend network of whom i affectionately refer to as “breeders.” I thought I would be one, too.

        After cancer, infertility, and three failed adoption attempts, my husband and I successfully adopted our two children. I took my experience as “what am I doing wrong” and turned it into a learning opportunity in how to get “right with God.”. What did He want from me? They were the hardest years of my life, but also the biggest blessings. I am more patient, grateful, and aware that I am a mere speck of atoms in this Universe. By intentionally focusing outward and trying to live the love of Jesus, I have been saved.

        I can’t give you the answer as to why you are experiencing this, but I hope what I write can help. I think we all stray away from the Lord as we grow, and we run into situations where we have the chance to turn it around. Do we do it or push away even further? Those without tragedy rarely understand the depth of God’s greatness. When everything else we hold dear has been torn from us, God is still there.

        Those babies born to crack addicts and abusive parents have their turmoil from day one. I am thankful mine didn’t start until I was in my late 20s. We all have our pain in this life, and I try my best to not judge others because I have not, nor do I, live their life.

        I am truly sorry you are experiencing such pain.

        Oh – have you read The Shack? It may help somewhat….

        Love and Hugs,

        Kristi

        • http://www.cindymurphythinkingoutloud.blogspot.com Cindy

          I have rad the shack and it doesn’t help with anything. It poses the big questions and then gives the most pathetic cliche answers one could find which seem all the more pathetic given the horrific subject matter. But, you know, that’s just my opinion…

  • Lissy

    It seems to me (and I might be wrong) that it’s the letter-writer feelings that need to be validated. That she grieves. That she struggles. That most Christians have asked (and non-Christians), “WHY?” Even if one doesn’t understand the reason she grieves, validation of feelings is always important. And to those who think she SHOULDN’T feel the way she does, I have to ask how you would feel if someone said the same thing to you about something you’re dealing with?

    • DR

      Exactly.

  • http://www.facebook.com/natalie.jones.3348 Natalie Jones via Facebook

    @Gina-I want a movement dedicated to stopping people making movements out of stupid stuff like not wanting to have kids.

  • http://www.redcrowgreencrow.wordpress.com Katie

    This is a topic that is extremely close to my heart, and therefore it’s a little hard for me to untangle it enough to think clearly about it.

    I’ve known since I was 15 years old that for health reasons it would be exceptionally unfair for both myself and any children I may have, to have children. It would be better for me to find other ways of mothering- fostering, adoption, being an ‘aunt’, wherever the Universe decides to put me (I suppose for the sake of honesty I should admit that I’m not Christian, but I was raised in a conservative Baptist church).

    Since I’ve had that knowledge since long before it was relevant to anything in my life most of the sting is gone. But. I do grieve for things that I wish I could have. Would I like to know what it means to be a biological mother? Yes. Would I like to crawl under a table every time anyone gushes about how they’re loving pregnancy? Yes. Do I sometimes wonder what I did to deserve not being like other people and fulfilling that relatively normal dream of ‘having a family’?

    Of course I do. Of course there are other routes to family formation- I have a degree in family studies; it’s certainly not a lack of knowledge of alternatives that sometimes keeps me up at night. The fact that I know that just because of my extreme cancer risk and I can adopt doesn’t take that sting out of it.

    It is sometimes necessary to simply grieve for something that has (or has not happened to us). Sometimes a cry of pain is just that, and needs to be accepted for what it is. I can’t (and have no interest in trying to) answer the God question, but sometimes just because the ‘obvious answer is adoption’ is overlooking the point of the conversation.

    • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/johnshore/ John Shore

      Right. But (you know, for the record and all) that was hardly the whole of my response to her.

  • Gillian Greenwood

    When people ask questions like this, about how unfair it is that they should suffer when they’ve been a faithful observer all their lives, I have to ask: when they see other people suffering, do they therefore assume it’s fair and just, because that person must not be a good, faithful person? Do they think bad things aren’t supposed to happen to good people, so if bad things happen, then that’s not a good person? Why does having only one child cause you a spiritual crisis, while, say, knowing about genocide does not? Does it make you a good Christian to only think about your own suffering and disregard that of others? Plus, you’re saying your suffering is worse now, because you know what you’re missing out on? I see. So you’re saying that you, as a mother of one, are suffering more than a woman who has no children, and you would have been better off having no children than to have just one child, because it hurts so much more now? This is what you need to do: stop wallowing in your own self-pity and start appreciating what you DO have, rather than looking at what you DO have as justifications for you to feel even worse because they just make you want to have more.

    • woman who wrote this

      How does talking about my suffering disregard others? I don’t assume anything about suffering. That’s why I am here asking about it. I want to know why and how an all loving & all powerful God can allow suffering. Yet mostly it seems people just want to talk about me and my particular situation and judge my feelings, when in reality, my specific situation is irrelevant to the question I pose. I totally get that all people suffer. Some more than others and it all seems very random to me. I guess I could just accept that its just one of those things that only God can comprehend and so I shouldn’t bother questioning about it. Some even say that it is blasphemous to question God. That is the conversation I was looking for. Btw, I already DO very much appreciate what I have and know that others suffer far greater than I ever have. That does not mean that my suffering is not still painful.

      • textjunkie

        John’s written a lot about how a loving God can allow suffering, and you can see a microcosm of it in his response to you already–that the appropriate response is to see what you can do to help God bring good out of evil. I personally don’t get it, but there’s a lot I don’t get about God, and while I’m at it, trying to bring good out of evil is as good a course of action as any. Accept that you’ve got the desire for children but the physical incapability for it–there are a lot of ways you can go with that. Consider the unloved children of the world and try to link them up with love, yours or other people’s. Consider what it is about your desire for children that can make you more in to the person God wants you to be, even if it clearly doesn’t include more children of your own genes. How can this help you love God with all your heart and your neighbor as yourself? etc. I’m not trying to be glib, because I appreciate this is a source of pain for you. Sometimes all you can do with pain is wrestle with it.

        • Elizabeth

          This.

      • Jill

        Perhaps somebody else has a clearer way to say this, but I’m going try again anyway.

        The challenge, for me—I don’t know about anyone else’s interpretation—was the thought I read from your letter that God is missing your devotion and ignoring your pleas. For me that is a theological and spiritual discussion, not an emotional sharing of understanding. But again as I stated earlier my intention for my comments to you, Letter Writer, was by no means to discount your feelings. I felt there are many deeply supportive comments from women who have shared the same depth of experience that I have not. And yet I know exactly what it is to feel overlooked by God.

        I think there are two different directions this discussion is taking: one in which God is seen to be not acting as we would want to believe He/She would, and the other which is a perceived lack of compassion towards the plight of the letter writer.

        You’re right–I have taken issue with some aspects of what you have seemed to say in your letter. If I have misinterpreted their meaning, I apologize as it’s all I’ve had to work from.

        It sounds to me now that perhaps you are more inclined toward seeking compassionate understanding. I wholly respect that, and ask for it myself when life puts me and my loved ones in the vice grip. And I say with the utmost sincerity that I am sorry that you are hurting, that you seem to feel alone inside with that hurt, and that you LONG for things to be different, better, more fruitful. You’re right too that it does seem damn random and deeply unfair.

        Never stop questioning the intricacies of God, in my humble opinion. You will likely have to find your own peace with feeling ‘blasphemous’ (I spent some time in that fearful place of doubt). For what it’s worth—you are not bad, guilty, or disrespectful for deepening your personal relationship with God. That is your birthright. These kinds of questions you so courageously are asking ARE what a deep, spiritual, and contended relationship with God preface. You are choosing to create intimacy with your Creator by having such a discussion. There is nothing at all wrong or flawed by that. And you are in good company. 

        Perhaps others here can direct you to some further theological discussions about the allowance of suffering question?

      • Lymis

        “I want to know why and how an all loving & all powerful God can allow suffering.”

        The way I answer that question for myself is to try to remember that this human life isn’t all their is to our existence, nor to our relationship with God.

        Not in any way to minimize anyone’s pain, but there is a way in which that question is like questions like this:

        “How could a loving parent let their child lose at Monopoly?”

        “How could a loving parent let their child ruin their clothes while playing?”

        “How could a loving parent make their child clean their room or do chores or go to school when that child would far prefer to play and enjoy the outdoors?”

        In all those cases, while the immediate experience is negative and possibly painful, the answer is that the parent knows that there is a bigger picture, that the hurt or frustration will be temporary, and that what is being “hurt” isn’t what is important about their child – their child isn’t their clothes, or their success at a game, or even just a bundle of pleasurable emotions.

        If we can believe that “when I was a child, I saw things as a child, but now that I am an adult, I have set aside childish things” – and that we can only now dimly sense the reality of what is to come for us, then we have to be open to the fact that our pain and suffering don’t define us, but that our choices about how to respond to it, and who we become as a result of them do.

        I won’t presume to define your own experience for you, but I can say that some of the things about myself and my life that I cherish most deeply, and am the proudest of, are the direct results of things where I suffered unfairly, or didn’t get some result I wanted dearly, or was deeply hurt over. That doesn’t make those experiences good, or fair, or even “right.” But I can still thank God for helping me become the man I am today, and ask God to continue to help me grow.

        A long time ago, I asked God to do God’s will with me and let me serve Him.

        If I asked a personal trainer or exercise coach to make me stronger, it would inevitably mean I was going to have sore muscles.

        If I ask God to make me compassionate, the only way I know to have that happen is for me to have enough pain in my life that I understand pain in others.

        If I ask God to make me patient, the only way I know to have that happen is for me to have enough frustrations in my life that I learn to deal with them graciously.

        If I ask God to make me tolerant, I’m going to have to deal with people who do things I object to.

        And if I ask God to let me be His servant, who knows what training I’m asking for?

        One of the hardest things for me in the middle of a painful experience is wanting to know what lesson it is that I am supposed to take from it – which is something that only time and life will let me choose to find out. That’s where faith comes in for me – trusting that time will let me choose to have that perspective.

        It doesn’t make it any less painful, but it can give meaning to that pain.

        • woman who wrote this

          Lymis,

          Thank you for taking the time to write that! That was very helpful for me to read!! :)

          • DR

            Woman who wrote this,

            You’ve entered into this conversation with a lot of courage and humility. I can feel how painful this is for you – I’m so sorry. I think of suffering like getting burned – there are some things we endure that seem so unfair and have no answers and it’s like growing new skin, we can’t ever go back to where we were before because of the loss (permanent loss) and that kind of healing is longer. I’ve been amazed at what beauty I pick up along the way but the process is excruciating.

      • http://www.unnameablecuriosity.blogspot.com Christine

        I got the part that it was about suffering, and wanting to know why. But it also struck me as being somewhat strange that you described the trigger of that crisis as your struggle to conceive again. Maybe others found that strange as well and it steered the conversation in a way you didn’t intend. I didn’t address that part of your question (only to say I didn’t think God was being your infertility), because it seemed your struggle was narrowly anchored in that infertility (i.e. that the spiritual crisis would resolve if you did conceive). I didn’t get that it was about a broader struggle with why bad things happen (and, to a lesser extent, why bring a good Christian didn’t save you from that).

        On the bigger question, I don’t think anyone has the answers. Some of our hurts do make us better and are good for us. Some clearly aren’t as much character-building as they are tramatizing. Often bad things have important silver linings, but sometimes that isn’t enough. Sometimes bad things seems to have a reason, and other times seem to be meaningless. For every scripture or pat answer or saying, there is an opposite to counter it. (To your quotes below, “The rain falls on the just and the unjust.”) They describe; they do not answer.

        The only answer that I might offer is that I think letting yourself ask the questions is good, and certainly not blasphemous. Those questions unite us in our common human experience. But letting the questions overwhelm us… I do that, and from experience, not productive. Asking ourselves how we respond knowing there is suffering, is a much more… beneficial question.

      • DR

        (I’d ignore comments like these, this kind of hostility isn’t about you).

    • Lissy

      Gillian- Wow. You obviously have a lot of anger inside and have directed it at the woman who wrote this letter. She’s not discounting anyone else’s suffering, as far as I have read in her comments and such, nor is she wallowing in self-pity. She’s asking a very valid question- one that INCLUDES the topic of genocide, murder, or any other thing that causes suffering- WHY does it happen? She used her own life and her own grieving as an example.

      And next time you are suffering, I wonder how you would feel if someone said to you what you just said to her: “This is what you need to do: stop wallowing in your own self-pity and start appreciating what you DO have, rather than looking at what you DO have as justifications for you to feel even worse because they just make you want to have more.”

    • Natalie

      Wow, you seem like a nice loving person (sarcasm) Talk misinterpretation, look, when people ask these kinds of questions their not discounting the suffering of others they are merely asking for some compassion and understanding. Also,i have to ask: Why are you so venomous towards this person? Would you be equally venomous if i asked why God has cursed me with an obsessive disorder? If so why?

    • DR

      This is such a gross and inappropriate comment. What is wrong with those of you who can’t deal with someone else’s grief that isn’t on your own terms? Good Lord. What a surprise from the members of this blog.

  • http://www.facebook.com/LostInSpaceMan SteveCampsOut
    • woman who wrote this

      Thanks for that! It was very inspirational, indeed!

      • http://www.facebook.com/LostInSpaceMan SteveCampsOut

        I hope it gives you what you needed.

  • Rob

    Once, Rabbi Schmelke of Nikolsburg asked Dov Baer of Mizritch, the Great Magid [Preacher] to explain the Talmudic commandment that we should praise God for evil as much as we praise him for good. Dov Baer said, “Go to the House of Study and ask my student Zussya.” Shmelke went to the House of Study and found Zussya; emaciated, filthy, clothed in rags. Shmelke asked, “How can we praise God for evil as much as we praise him for good?”

    “I can’t tell you,” Zussya repiled, “because nothing bad has ever happened to me.”

    • Molly by Golly

      +1

    • DR

      whoa.

  • http://www.barnmaven.com Barnmaven

    I don’t know if what I have to say will be at all helpful to you, but I can hopefully express myself well enough for you to know that I have deep compassion for your situation and some understanding of the fertility struggle.

    I’m not sure every difficult or wonderful thing happens because God wills it to be so; certainly that CAN be the case, but there are many times that things happen because of the free will mankind has. One can never see the long term consequences of even the smallest actions, and people often suffer as a result of harm caused by other people’s choices, intent or error.

    Though I struggled with fertility issues, eventually I did have two children. My youngest has autism and my oldest struggles with bipolar disorder, both have ADHD. We struggled a lot when they were toddlers and life is sometimes…challenging. I don’t want to up-play the difficulties of my kids’ issues, because honestly, I don’t want people to think that an autism diagnosis is the end of the world. Its not. But yes, sometimes things can be incredibly frustrating and difficult. And I wonder why my kids have to suffer and learn to cope and manage their behaviors in ways that neurotypical kids will never have to.

    I suspect deep down that one of the reasons my kids have these problems – and one of the reasons women have so many fertility issues and there is more cancer and there is more asthma and more allergies and immune system disorders, I think these things are not because God wills them but because humans have spent a lot of years creating chemical compounds that turned out to be horribly toxic. Even though we are not still making all of them and even though we work to try to clean up their effects on our environment, they are still out there and new ones are being created all the time whose ultimate impact can’t be known. All these toxins are in our air, our water, the furniture we buy, the cleaners we use, the soil we grow our food in.

    Does that make me feel better about my kids diagnosis or your fertility? No, it makes me somewhat angry. Mankind does much to destroy itself, and the decisions made generations ago by other people are affecting all of us now just as what we as a world do now will have unforeseen consequences for our children and grandchildren. But at the same time, it helps me to understand that this is not the will of God. I don’t need to be frustrated at or angry with God over the choices people make and the things they do whether on purpose or by accident. I’m sure the researchers who discovered how to create bleach never intended for anyone to be poisoned or harmed by their wonderful discovery — they just wanted to find a way to make things clean. The Wright brothers would likely never have imagined a time when untold thousands of improved versions of their flying machine would be crisscrossing the skies of our world — and sometimes crashing and killing or injuring hundreds of people or being used as weapons to reign devastation on other human beings.

    If God didn’t allow suffering, if he didn’t allow people to choose to do the wrong thing or to make mistakes, then free will wouldn’t exist and neither would we.

    It is a terrible emotional struggle when everything in you tells you that you want to have a baby and you can’t. Baby fever is something I’m not sure every woman gets and I’m pretty sure most men can’t understand, but for those of us who have in our lives been stricken with it, we understand its depth, breadth and all-encompassing nature. When it strikes, it is the ONLY thing we want to do and to be — a mother. To be faced with challenges when friends seem to easily have babies and women who probably shouldn’t be having children at all get pregnant it feels AWFUL.

    We can’t see the other side of a struggle when we’re in the middle of it. I cannot predict what the outcome of your own struggle will be, though I hope very much for you that there are more babies whether your grow them the old-fashioned way or you adopt them. (I was adopted as an infant by the way, and it was a very great blessing for me). What I can guarantee you is that before this struggle, during this struggle and forevermore after this struggle, you will always have the unconditional love of God and you will also always have the love of a host of people who pray for you, care for you – some because they are present in your life and others who don’t even know you but love you because you are a fellow traveler in the great mystery called life.

    It is not easy to get past being hurt and angry and grieving over the inability to reach something that calls out to you at the cellular level. I pray that you are able to find some peace and some okay-ness in the middle of your struggles.

    Sorry this is so long. I didn’t mean to write an essay.

    • woman who wrote this

      Thanks very much. That was beautifully written and very helpful!

    • MARICEL

      wow….it is very true…what can I say…..very helpful and true..my lives revolves on it getting pregnant..i feel crazy already that is why im quiet

  • kathryn

    i myself cant have children

    heck i was born intersex and without any female organs altogetherr

    im asexual

    what am i supposed to do? be single and alone?

    i was told by not well meaning christians that God must have called me to be single to serve him instead and that he has other plans for me

    ok and when exactly did God tell them that or why would God need to inform a complete stranger what he has for me or called me to do – geez some christians need to just shut up

    and quit making things up my gosh its so damaging and whats worse they thought they were tying to help – help what geez

    i cant have sex being intersex and being asexual dont want to

    God has very much left me with no options here

    i feel very isolated being an asexual and being intersex

    life is very lonely to the point i cry on a daily basis im so lonely

    you thought not having kids was hard

    try being single at 37 and being asexual and being told this is Gods will

    i dont trust that God, dont love that God want nothing to do with God then

    why the heck did he make me this way? why!!!! nothing good has come from this

    ive learned nothing etc

    my gosh is my purpose in life to be a spectator while other people are married

    i have never been on a date – not 1 !!!

    im 37

    my life has been a living hell because of gods so called plan

    if God knits us in our mothers womb – did the needle slip with me?

    what also hurt is to hear christians tell me God doesnt make mistakes? i would feel alot better if God did make mistakes because it angers me to even think my birth defect was done on purpose? on purpose why? for what? for whos benefit? certainly not mine!!!!

    • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/johnshore/ John Shore

      I really want to thank you for sharing this, Kathyrn. It’s extremely compelling. Your life is defined by dynamics so foreign to most people. If you’d ever care to share anymore about your life’s experience, please contact me (via the “Contact Me” tab atop my blog), and let’s talk about doing that. Thanks for your honesty and passion here.

    • Gil

      Kathryn, your comment was probably one of the saddest I’ve ever read … I’m really sorry about your loneliness. Being part of a small minority is terrible, and the only way to cope with it is to quit trying to conform and actually look for other people who belong to your group. I urge you to connect with other asexual people (there’s plenty out there), look them up online, find a website, or start your own group. Why don’t you start a Facebook page or group? If necessary, move to a larger city, where your chances are better. Also, quit this Christian BS. The only thing they do is to put you down, so I urge you to free yourself from a toxic religion. Get off your couch and do something about it, you can’t let life pass you by like this.

      I hope this helps! Good luck!

  • Childless

    I failed to have desperately wanted children and failed to adopt due to a skittish husband though I wanted to. I have felt cursed by God and am not sure I’m not. Though I am saved, teach kids in Sunday school and do love the Lord, I have never found peace or a lessening of the pain over this issue. I’m now too old. All I have are two convictions in my heart: I did not deserve kids, and neither does anyone else, and once God whispered to me that it would not hurt anymore in eternity.

    To Kathyrn,

    I ache for your loneliness. Errors in our bodies are not God’s will, they are a result of the fall of mankind. I pray that He will bring you genuine love and joy. Maybe you would be able to adopt a lonely child and rescue them from the torture you have experienced. God’s will for us will ultimately result in all the wrong things being made right and all our tears being dried.

  • TheVeryTruth

    God has certainly CURSED many of us for being single today, especially many of us men that were very less fortunate to have met a good woman to share our life with to have a family too. why in the world would God make certain men and women very fortunate to have met one another but not us? i would have certainly wanted to have a love life than having no one at all which very much makes sense to me, doesn’t it? i would certainly say so. does the word SPECIAL appear on their forehead?, and it hurts me so very much to see them have a life. i am not any different than they are, and there is no reason at all for this. i hate going out all the time as it is and i can never seem to be at the right place at the right time since many women nowadays are so very nasty to meet which they will even walk away from us when we try to start a conversation with the one that we would really like to meet, and there are times i will have a woman curse at me which i just don’t understand at all. i certainly don’t want to be alone the remaining years of my life left, and that would really be very depressing since i was married at one time and having my wife of 15 years cheating on me which i was a very caring and loving husband that was very much committed to her too before this happened to me. in fact, i know other men that have been CURSED at by women also which makes it very sad for us.

    • Elizabeth

      Woah. You seem to have had some really bad interactions with women. Maybe God is working His mysterious ways. In the meantime, you can work on your hurt and the resulting anger. I… know a little about that. Good luck.

      • TheVeryTruth

        well it is very true what i said with my last comment, and God is so very Evil for punishing us innocent men that would just want to have a normal life. don’t you agree? i certainly didn’t do anything wrong to cause my loneliness, and i can’t help it since i seem to meet so many very nasty women instead of just one good one to make me happy. why would i ever blame myself? i wasn’t the one to ask to be born in the first place, and if this was God’s intention for me to be alone which is not fair at all. why should so many other men and women find love and not me? and now with so much more Gay Women out there that will certainly add to the problem, and i know other men that had very bad experiences with women as well. if i had a good woman approach me that wanted to meet me, it is very obvious that i am not going to curse at her. so why should women curse at us men when we will try to start a conversation with the one that we would really like to meet? don’t you agree that it is wrong for a woman to curse at us? i would certainly say so. it is just so very sad that God made so many mean women today, instead of so many real good women that we had years ago. it is very obvious why our parents and grandparents had very long lasting marriages since both men and women were very committed to one another, and many women accepted their men for who they were.

        • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/johnshore/ John Shore

          wow.

        • Allie

          Okay, first of all: what everyone here is being too polite to say, but which you need to hear. You sound like a lunatic. If you come off that way on the internet, I’m thinking you don’t come off particularly well in person either. Assuming you aren’t in truth mentally ill and can understand what I’m saying and benefit from it, you need to start with your presentation. Try not to sound crazy when you talk to people. Use correct grammar, use capital letters when appropriate, and be aware that statements like “Why would I ever blame myself?” make most people want to run and hide from you. That includes the women you are approaching. They are cursing at you because you are scaring them. As a man, if you have the average strength of a man, you are able to physically overpower 90% of women. Women know this. That’s why a woman does not like to be approached by a strange man, while a man may not feel threatened in the same way being approached by a strange woman. Think about it. It’s called empathy. Put yourself in the woman’s place and imagine how you appear to her.

          • Really

            I seriously can’t blame this guy at all for feeling the way that he does, and many of us other men are finding it hard as well trying to meet a good woman today.

  • http://kingjesusministry.org/ cindy

    It can be a generational curse. To brake it repent for your ancestors take responsibility of their sins.

    Example: In my family all the women either got divorced, husband died, or they were never married all the women ended up alone. And that is because an ancestor of mine committed adultery or fornication, so all I did was repent for my ancestors and ask for God to forgive them for their sin and disobedience. Do the same to brake the curse off your family. Look for books on generational curses.

    • Elizabeth

      Wow. Just… wow.

      • Kathy Roe

        People should be punished for what others do. Sounds revengeful

        • Kathy Roe

          Shouldn’t sorry for typo

    • kat_xk8

      That’s utter bunk ! Not sorry to say that either.

    • Bones

      Meanwhile in the real world….

  • Raven

    I just came across your site after Googling “Why has God forsaken me with infertility?” and noticed the woman who was upset with God for allowing her to have “only” child thus far. I am so infuriated by people who have at least one child when I have been praying, pleading, and begging God for my own, natural born child for over twenty years. I have never had an abortion, miscarriage (to my knowledge), or anything but now at 42 I’m feeling that God has damned me. I don’t want to adopt. I never have and it’s heart-wrenching when people suggest it like that is such a wonderful option. I am in the middle of fertility treatments and it is costly and there is no guarantee. I have wondered all of my life why everyone says God allows us freedom of choice; yet, I choose to be pregnant and that chose was not given to me. Yet, there are people who can conceive dozens of children, drug addicts, whores etc. with no problem. I fail to see God’s blessings anymore. I have all but given up on God and everything else spiritual. My religious mother feels that I am rushing God; but I don’t think 20 years is rushing. I’m stable, don’t engage in drugs, have multiple degrees, and would cherish this blessing that has never been given to me. Where is the benevolent God ????

    • Childless

      Dear Raven,

      I know exactly how you feel. It does seem so unfair when so many children are given to the undeserving. As I said in my comment below. You feel cursed of God. We are not promised children any more than a person who is physically disabled will be necessarily given a sound body. All of life is under a curse due to sin and we are hit with a particularly painful manifestation of this curse as are all people with bodies that do not work properly. Yet, there are promises to us in the bible. Your mother may be misrepresenting God accidentally. The truth is you may never have a child. If this turns out to be true, as it is in my case (age 50) God has said “No” to you. The rage that has to be processed with this is quite intense and NO ONE who has children, even one child but wanting more, will ever understand the depth of that feeling. You are not alone in feeling it. Even your most loving, supporting family and friends will say things, meaning to help, that rip you, in their ignorance. The really hard truth is God could give us children, yet has chosen not to. Faith requires us to see that getting our way will not happen contrary to God’s will. We have to see that the biblical titans said things like: “Though he slay me, yet will I trust him.” (Job) For me, being denied children has certainly felt like a type of slaying.

      Yet God has a specific promise for the infertile in Isaiah 56 v3-5 :

      And let no eunuch complain,

      “I am only a dry tree.”

      For this is what the Lord says:

      “To the eunuchs who keep my Sabbaths,

      who choose what pleases me

      and hold fast to my covenant—

      to them I will give within my temple and its walls

      a memorial and a name

      better than sons and daughters.

      I cannot understand how this could be true in my flesh, but God says it. If I believe God rewards those who believe him then this will be true, perhaps not until eternity, but it will happen. There will come a time when the ache becomes meaningless because I will see with eyes that truly understand what could be better than sons and daughters.

      The woman with one child is also processing a loss so have compassion on her. It is not the same as your loss or mine, but pain is pain. I know a woman who lost a 17 week pregnancy last week. She has two living children already. Can I deny the pain I saw in her eyes? The dashed hopes and the sickened heart are hers to bear as well. If your profound loss does not teach you compassion, then it is wasted pain indeed.

      God is benevolent, but He is not our genie in a bottle to command. Maybe He will bless you with a child. But if He does not, how will you respond? Will you acknowledge His right to say No, or will you blaspheme His name and sovereignty? We are the created, not the creator. It can be harsh to realise this when all we wanted was a sweet baby to love; a physical manifestation of the love we share with a beloved husband.

      I send blessings for you and will pray for you. Perhaps He will relent after all.

    • jedaustin

      I can definitely relate. It all sounds like empty platitudes after 20 years of trying without success. So far “God’s plan” seems to make us miserable; we’ve done this 13 times now.. there can’t be many if any good eggs left. I still have faith but I feel stupid for it at this point.

  • knotts

    People need to stop and think about who really does bad things to us… God lets the devil test our fate… the bible proves that… God doesn’t do all these things to us, He never makes a mistake… the devil is allowed to do everything except kill you… when you down God for this the devil gets his victory… there is a story in the bible of where the devil made a bet with God… He could take and break job but he wouldn’t forsaken God… the devil stripped everything here on earth from him… but he couldn’t kill him… in the end the devil promised him to give him it all back if he would turn his back of God… God gave job double of everything he once had… build your trust and Faith because our rewards may not be here on earth but in heaven… yes I have right to say all this because I’ve battled infertility for 15 years… not once gettin pregnant to have a miscarriage… I have shed my share of tears and held my own grudge against God… I recently have realized this isn’t Gods will, and this isn’t His plans… we have to keep our faith to get what is more important and a higher love than we could have here on earth…

    There are children out there that need you as much as you are needing a child to love… if you think you aren’t carrying those children and don’t give birth to them you are wrong… you carry those children in your heart, you give birth the day yall meet for the first time… God opened my eyes to that a year ago… my husband and I are going next year after our two year anniversary to start out adoption… God has a child for me even if we don’t conceive together we will conceive by adoption… don’t lose your light just because you don’t see the whole picture… I use to be there too… I thought God had turned his back on me and left me to defend for myself but He is there waiting for you to come back to Him and give Him your whole heart… once you do that He will give you signs, and it could be by someone else that is saying things to you… open your mind and heart and He will speak to you… all you have to do is believe…

    • Kathy Roe

      When your heart is open and have faith and prayer is ignored, it is hard to have faith.

      • Bonnie

        Yes to that, Kathy.

  • Ellen

    Cindy,

    Good for you. Glad God had a plan for you. God promised us children before we married and broke that promise. Not only that, no plan for me, no revelations, nothing. Childless hit it on the mark, and I can relate.

    DH and I have been married for 23 years and for a lot of that time, tried to have kids. Except for the time we drove 90 miles to an infertility clinic, and just before our appointment, DH let me have it, declaring he didn’t want kids, was only doing this for me, and I was being very selfish, etc. etc. I still am working on forgiving him, but don’t know if I can. Not only that, IVF cost about $8,000 then, which we didn’t have, and wasn’t covered by insurance. So much for that bright idea.

    Next, I looked into adoption. More expensive than IVF, we were not good candidates due to my health problems, and if and when the mother changed her mind about keeping the child, that would finish me off. And forget overseas adoption or adopting a special needs child. DH wouldn’t stand for that.

    More months of trying and monthly heartache once Mother Nature appeared. Doctors found pre-cancerous cells in my uterus and I had a total abdominal hysterectomy. Later, my ovaries were removed for the same reason. Other health problems rapidly developed, and I am now unable to work for the foreseeable future. Nothing but failure, and nothing to take my mind off grief, pain, anger and loss. Add to that hot flashes and night sweats from instant menopause. I am in pain all the way around.

    I am entitled to my feelings. I am entitled to want to kill several women I used to work with who came into the office waving ultrasound pictures of their developing fetuses in front of my nose. I am entitled to want to bomb the conference room in which the office staff gave required baby showers. Bomb it with those baby factories still in it. Not that I ever would, but I can express the desire for it. I am furious with God for lying to me, and I have had it. All my life I have been faithful and obedient to God, and have tried my best to seek God’s will. And all I have gotten is broken promises and the shaft.

    Call this a pity party if you want to. I call this honesty. The closest I have been to motherhood is two miscarriages 2-4 weeks into the pregnancy. Neither one were confirmed, and may have been false pregnancies. Which gives me another bone to pick.

    Why should I serve a God who breaks promises? And why should I have anything resembling faith? Because I don’t. God has toyed with me for 47 years. That’s long enough. Even now, God is rubbing salt in the wound by constantly parading pregnant women in front of me. Men just don’t get it.. And I can’t accept my current situation gracefully.

    Don’t give me platitudes or pious ramblings. If you see a way out of this mess that is legal and ethical, let me know.

    • Childless

      Ellen, you have expressed so eloquently the depth of hurt and anger I think many of us have felt when denied children. On top of that your husband has left you alone emotionally in your suffering. I can certainly relate about the parade of pregnant women. I no longer go to showers. If I am very close to the woman, I try to send a card with money, but to go and share in her joy is beyond me. She is entitled to it but I feel like a toad squashed on the road for the duration.

      I cannot say God ever promised me children. I know I want them, I know God whispers in my heart, but no promises to me personally for children. I am truly curious, how did you know for sure God promised you children?

      • Ellen

        At age 25, I was engaged and kept in prayer about the marriage because frankly there were a couple of other men “chasing” me at the time, and my then-fiance, now husband, was in the process of finalizing a divorce. (I was labeled a “homewrecker” and worse by various Seminary professors in grad school. Idiots.) At any rate, I was praying about whether or not to go through with the wedding, and “heard” the message, “Do not be afraid to love this husband I have given you. You will have a long, healthy life and will have children.” I remember the message as if it were yesterday, and knew beyond a doubt where it came from. Well, obviously most if not all of it was a flat-out lie.

        Thanks for your understanding. I am working hard on getting through all this, and trying to neutralize my reaction to triggers like ultrasounds and seeing friends expecting. As you know, it’s a very rough road.

        • kat_xk8

          I’m sorry but it’s quite clear in the Bible that God hates divorce . Jesus made it clear about marrying divorced people . Did his wife cheat on him ? Why would God give you someone that goes against what had made clear . I’m sorry but the devil can talk to people and be a false light
          God giving you a man finalizing a divorce ? I just can’t agree with you

          • http://allegro63.wordpress.com/ allegro63

            Rather harsh on the poor girl don’t you think? She made a mistake. She led with her heart, her heart being a part of her made a mistake. Besides you can pray until your ears bleed jello pudding for a definitive answer on big life decisions and there is no guarantee you will get the right answer. She tried. It didn’t work. Our job is now to be compassionate

          • Bones

            Meanwhile in the real world……

    • Bonnie

      I teared up when I read this Ellen because it so mimics exactly how I feel right now. The anger- at others, at God, at the church…it’s so raw and so real. I quit going to church altogether. I hated seeing other women have one child after another…3, 4, sometimes 5 in a row. I hated how everything was “Family” centered and how there really wasn’t a place for me as a childless woman. My DH doesn’t get it. At all. So the lonliness is something that is the hardest to bear. I used to feel like I could weather anything “with God’s help,” but I feel like he’s too busy blessing other couples with multiple children and can’t seem to find the time to help those of us out who don’t have any. I pretty much feel like saying unimaginable and terrible things to God. Wish I could hug you.

      • Ellen

        Bonnie,

        You just DID give me a hug, dear, and I appreciate it. We may have some rough rows to hoe, on very rocky ground and armed only with a stick, but that’s at least something. DH and I having serious marital problems, and I have threatened to leave – so far, being tugged in so many different ways I don’t know which end is up. As far as I know in the spiritual department, God has permanently hung up on me and disconnected my “hotline”. I frankly have spent years working with Wiccans and other strange birds, and am tempted to become a white witch. Let’s see how God responds to that one, if of course God has time…

      • Glenda Dudley

        Amen. You feel isolated and God doesn’t seem to care. Maybe we’ll get our answers someday but still waiting. I’m thankful for what I do have but the nagging feeling never goes away.

      • kat_xk8

        God seems to be too busy for me as well . I’m still single at 39 and have never even been on a date !!!!

  • Kathy Roe

    Well I’m definitely cursed with infertility been trying for 20 yrs, nothing. Have periods on time every month go through all the cruel sharedes . Well 42 now and not one child. I also feel cheated and hate when people say, “you were meant for something else” . Well yeah, don’t see it. Everyone keeps saying the biggest blessing in the world is having a child yet people answer to me is I was meant for something else. Words, Just an answer you give when you’re at a loss of words. I don’t blame them, they can’t say, “Sorry you will never have a family?” Be grateful for one, I would be ecstatic. You sound ungrateful .

    • Glenda Dudley

      Good for you Kathy. I feel your pain. I was blessed with one child after fertility problems but my son and wife cannot conceive at all. Son’s wife is 44 now. You can’t tell people who have never had fertility problems in their family what you feel. They do not understand because it came easy for them and they are happy for themselves.

  • DANNY T

    dont complain you already have one. im married for 13 years no baby yet anyone can help prayers, any medical treatment that you can share thanks. GOD BLESS

  • Mary

    You have a child so stop complaining!!!!!! many of us don’t so stop whining about secondary infertility

  • colonetothebone

    Same I’ve been married for three years and we are desiring at least one. Be grateful.

  • jedaustin

    My wife and I have been together for 20 years, married for 14 years, and have gone through 11 IUIs, 2 IVFs; it is a lot of money (over 100k) and an emotional roller coaster I wouldn’t wish on anyone. We’re in our early 40s and still waiting for God’s blessing… It is really hard to keep having faith. On the same day my wife and I lost ours my wife witnessed a friend’s child (who she also witnessed being born) deliver her second child. People offer empty BS like “It’s all part of God’s plan” because they don’t know what else to say; others say stuff like “You can ‘just’ adopt” but it’s not the same. For the woman who felt forsaken by God because she couldn’t have more children I can only say: Be thankful for what you’ve received.

    • kathy

      Yup can’t even have one and 44 now. Well said.

  • nancy Alfred

    HELLO to my friends out there i am testifying about the good work of a man who helped me. It has been hell from the day my husband left me, i am a woman with two kids, my problem started when the father of my kids travelled and after then i did not set my eyes on him again i tried calling his phone but he was not picking up my call after some weeks he called me telling me that he has found love some where else, at first i never knew he took it to be serious but the day after he came to the house to pick up his things that was the time i noticed that things are not the same as it used to be and i kept having hope that he will come back but things were going bad day by day and i needed to talk to someone about it so i went to his friend but there was no hope so i gave up on him, a month later i met a man on the the internet a spell caster i never believed in this but i needed my man back so i told the spell caster my problem at first and he assured me that i will get him back but i had to do what he told me to do and after three days my husband called me telling me that he his coming home i still do not believe but as at the sixth day the father to my kids came to the house asking me to forgive him, from that day i was happy with my family thanks to the esango priest of (abamieghe)esango priest he his a great man you need to try him you can as well tell him your problem so that he can be of help to you his contact email is this esangopriest@gmail.com indeed you are a priest thank you for making my home a happy home again. remember his email is esangopriest@gmail.com

  • kat_xk8

    What I need to know is why was born with a birth defect that has not only robbed me from having children it’s robbed me from getting married . People Stab in the dark and missing miserably opinions have been emotional and spirtual cancer and yes that came from Christians ! So it’s not Gods will for to have kids and get married ? Was this birth defect the insurance plan ? My gosh I had no say or Input in this ! Where is my free will
    I wanted to get married and have children but this birth defect that I did nothing to get or ask for steals both From me daily ! And to some of you christians out there – shut up with this jesus is my husband or I was called to be single bunk !!!

    • http://allegro63.wordpress.com/ allegro63

      Why people were born with variations in their bodies, that cause limitations, physical or mental is part of biology. We sometimes get anomalies that do make life more of a challenge. Its no one’s fault, it just happens. It has nothing to do with our choices, or our free will. We get life, and sometimes we get extras in that package that feel like the zonk behind door number 3. Its often a crap shoot.

      We all have hopes and dreams, that we want with all our hearts, but we also know that they are completely impossible. Its tough, it can be heartbreaking. I personally don’t play along with the whole God’s will trope, or the “called to be” something you never wanted, is not part of your heart of dreams, because I find that mindset, when applied by others, ..often selfish and cruel, even though they don’t mean it thus. All I know to do is to try to make the best of what I’ve got.

    • Bones

      Christians say stupid things all the time.

      When my sister’s husband was decapitated, my brother’s wife tried consoling her by saying “It’s God’s will.”

      Shit happens for no reason sometimes.

      We just go on trying to be the best people we can and helping and lifting others struggling with this journey.

      • http://allegro63.wordpress.com/ allegro63

        Her brother in law dies in a horrific fashion, and this woman’s words of comfort essentially amounted to. “Well dear, God decided that it would be best for all, if your husband literally lost his head and left you a widow, greiving his loss. God’s loving like that.”
        head…desk.


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