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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello Ladies,

I am having a little dilemma and I have read a few threads and seen that many of you have experienced the same thing, Please help!!

My DH and I are very keen to adopt, we have attended an introduction to adoption course and met with a social worker at the end of last year to gather information (knowing and understanding that we could not start the process until 6months after finishing treatment). The problem we are having is deciding when to leave the fertility treatment behind and start the process.

When we started TTC 4 year ago I earned to be pregnant and have our own baby, we started trying relatively early as I had a gut feeling (cant describe or explain that) we would encounter problems. Long story short, many tests and investigations have come back normal, so we have unexplained fertility. We have altogether done 1 year on clomid, all months resulting in BFN. We have started IUI this year but are now experiencing stimulation issues. We are entitled to 6 IUI and 3 IVF on NHS. My dilemma is that we are both still relatively young (myself 26yrs old and DH 30yrs old) and quite early in the treatment journey to pull out and go down the adoption journey, would you all agree? My big concern is that if we pull out now we will always think 'what if'. However something has changed in me recently, especially since looking into adoption. We both want a family so much but have both agreed we don't feel the need for our children to be biologically linked to us. I have stopped earning for pregnancy and a newborn baby, and I am earning a family. I have never been pregnant so don't know whether I would have a problem maintaining a pregnancy, but I do fear greatly that if we do eventually get pregnant that we would suffer from a pregnancy loss, and I know that I would simply just not cope with such grief.

Oh, something to add to this story is that I am a Midwife so I will never escape from pregnant women or newborn babies so I cant afford to ever feel resentfull towards pregnant women. I cant allow my personal circumstances effect my job in that way. I think a big part of my fear of pregnancy loss has come from my experience in my job as I often deal with miscarriages and unfortunately pregnancy loss later in pregnancy and I always think to myself 'I simply would not cope if that was me'.

I think what I am really asking is should I put myself through more treatment just in case something results in pregnancy, and then run the risk of that much wanted for pregnancy being lost just so we can say 'well we tried'. Or should we call our losses now, come to terms with our decision, and start the process of adoption (which just feels right, cant explain what I mean).

Any advice or comments?

Thanks X x X
 

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Hi Forever Hopeful

I think this is a really difficult decision to make, which as you say, alot of people will have been through.  We have been TTC for about 5-6 yrs and the last 2 years have been spent doing ICSI. Before we started we decided that we would use our 2 NHS plus pay for 1 ourselves. We felt that by doing this we would give ourselves a good chance and wouldn't be left feeling 'what if'. For us it was also important to be clear about how much we were prepared to go through as we are both open to adoption and would prefer to look at this option rather than continous treatment. Our last ICSI at the beginning of this yr was successful but unfortunately the pregnancies did not progress. After having already experienced a miscarriage this was obviouly painful. However, I do now feel that we gave it our best chance and I feel ready and excited about moving onto adoption.

As you said you're still young so you would have time to try some treatment and move onto adoption if you needed to. I might be wrong as I am still finding out about the adoption process (and im sure others will be able to advise you further) but I think the SW would want to look at this in detail with you to ensure you felt comfortable with your decision if you didn't pursue treatment. You mentioned that you no longer feel the yearning for pregnancy and are more drawn to adoption- I wonder whether it would be worth having a couple of counselling sessions to explore this further. We took advantage of the counselling offered by our clinic and we both found it really beneficial.

As you said, if you went down the treatment route there is no reason to suspect that you wouldn't be able to maintain a pregnancy. It must be very difficult with you job to see pregnancy loss but you must see lots of healthy pregnancies and babies too...

I'm not sure I've helped! I hope you find the decision that's right for you.

xxx
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi there, thanks very much for your reply. Everything you have said makes sense. I have been thinking about taking up counselling recently myself as I just feel lost. It's good to hear the you did and found it beneficially, maybe that's what I need.

Sometimes the most effective statements are the most simplest. You have totally hit the nail on the head, I do see alot of happiness and healthy pregnancy/babies. I should try focus on that more. Thanks for pointing that out. Unfortunately the cases that stay with you forever are the most tragic, and recently there has been a few and they've all been fertility babies! Nature is so damn cruel sometimes.

I will take everything you have said onboard and try to focus on more positive things rather than being a worry negative annie.

Thanks again
X x X
 

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Hi

It is a very difficult decision and I think you really need to explore whether there would be any 'what if?' if you didn't do more tx.  You could always go back to ivf but you may well lose all your NHS funding after adoption, I know our LA wouldn't fund even 1 cycle if you had paid for private tx, either of you had a child from a different relationship or if you had an adopted child.  Its a lot of funding to be passing up on.  Maybe they could up your stim drugs to help, as you are young (I started ivf at 26!) they wouldn't be wanting to give too many drugs to start with but they can up them.

I went through 9 yrs ttc, 10 icsi cycles, 3 with full immune tx and had a missed miscarriage at 12 weeks on 4th go, all self funded, before moving onto adoption.  We have no regrets, we have no 'what ifs?' but we did run out of money!  It took a lot for us to change path, it was scary whereas ivf was 'familiar', but it turned out to be the right path for us in the end.  It would be nice to have a way of looking into the future and seeing which way to go, would save many people a lot of heartache and financial stress, but the closest thing to that would be to set yourselves a limit of X tx (something I wasn't able to do) and if at the end of that you don't have your child move on to adoption.

Losing a pg/baby especially when you have had fertility tx is hard, I thought it was going to destroy me for a while, and everytime I went through tx after that I dreaded another mc more than I did a bfn.  BUT I survived, it changed me like so many other life experiences do, and it made me more determined to have a family somehow.

Adoption needs your 100% commitment and while you have questions over when to stop tx and move on I would say you are not really ready to move on.  It was a huge relief to step off the ivf rollercoaster and I don't believe you feel that until you are ready.

You are young, there are no reasons for you to believe you can't get pg and stay pg and even if you set a 2 year time scale you would still be considered very young in terrms of adoption, though I know 2 years sounds a long time  :eek:  Have some counselling and maybe a holiday???  If you do go down the adoption route the right child will find you when the time is right.  If we had carried on with it the first time we contacted the LA we wouldn't have our DS who couldn't be a more perfect fit into our family even by birth.

Good luck
OT x
 

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Hi Forever Hopeful

wow, being a midwife must be an amazing job, my friend has just started training but out in Australia!

I am 27 and DH 28. I have PCOS and non existent cycles and DH has poor sperm morphology. We have been trying to conceive naturally for about 4 1/2 yrs now. I have had many BFN'S but 2 yrs ago had a BFP. It was an amazing feeling but sadly short lived as had early miscarriage.

We know there are many treatment options out there for us to try but we have talked and talked and they are just not for us. I am a fairly laid back person and feel what is meant to be is meant to be and for us adoption feels like the right path for us to take. It has been hard though as some family members although supportive of adoption still feel we ought to be doing everything we can to have our own child first!

Its a hard decision for you to make but it definitely helped me reading other peoples experiences and gathering as much information about our options as possible. I think for me I have always wanted to be a younger mum and for my children to have younger grandparents as I lost all mine at a young age. Also I know that nothing is carved in stone and that in the future post adoption I will go back to letting nature take its course and If I conceive then great I have adopted and biological child but If I don't then it's not meant to be. Also for me I didn't want adoption to be a last resort but that's just me and we all think differently and do things differently but just thought I would share my experience with you.



 
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Hello FH

As others have said, deciding when to stop is a very personal decision and only one you and your DH can make. 

Our route was slightly different in that we became repsite foster carers whilst still ttc, and then ended up adopting one family we supported when we both needed a new family.  We could have adopted them earlier, but we chose to do one IVF cycle, just to close that door. 

For now, I'd find out as much as you can about all the different options and keep talking to your DH. 

Hope you can make the right decision for you both.

Bop
 

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Hi Forever Hopeful

It's a really hard decision to make and it has to be made by you and your DH together.  I just thought I'd add my expereince to the thread. 

We had always discussed adoption from the beginning although we seemed to get swept along the treatment route - no one had mentioned adoption to us.  Like you we also had 6 IUI's and 3 IVF's on the NHS (so lucky compared to most).  We were positive at first that it would work but unfortunately for us it didn't.  On the 2nd IVF we got a BFP which resulted in an early miscarriage.  We were devastated to say the least and the pain was unbearable for a time but we did manage to pick ourselves back up again and we then went on to try the last IVF.  M/C is so cruel, especially after having fertility treatment and I'll never forget it but it did become easier and we have moved on now.  We thought about giving up the roller coaster of treatment after our 1st IVF but we decided we didn't want to look back and wonder what if.  We could have had another go and paid for it but we deicided we would rather spend our money on our family to be than 'gamble it' as our odds were getting worse. 

During the IVF treatments we started to think we wanted a family not just the pregnancy and the tiny baby.  It was such a relief for us to step off the roller coaster treatment ride.  We feel much more positive about the adoption path and are so excited that we will one day have our children home.  I do still get the odd pang when someone announces their pregnancy or someone's just had a baby but it's just a pang and doesn't take over like it used to. 

I hope you come to the right decision for yourselves.  You are young enough to have time to think about it so don't rush.

Lots of luck  ^reiki^ ^reiki^

Charlie x       
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hi Ladies, Thank you all for your responses, advice and sharing your stories with me.

I agree I have a lot to think about, I am going to take advantage of the counselling offered by our clinic as I think I need to talk things out and explore certain feelings and confusion I am experiencing.

Me and DH have talked before and both said that we would not carry on after our NHS treatments simply as we would use that as a final point to stop as don't want to get stuck in the routine of endless treatment, plus the financial implications of paying for treatment.

I do feel that many friends and family would be judgemental and not understand why we would stop treatment and go down adoption route but I couldn't care less, they have not experienced infertility and are not in our position plus its simply just not their decision to make. My DH's parents are foster carers and we have had many in depth discussion with them about our thoughts in regards to adoption, they have been very helpfull and supportive which has been good.

We plan to do a few more IUI cycles, just taking one at a time. If we continue to experience problems then we may take that as a sign to call it a day. We are busy discussing whether we want to go onto IVF if we complete our IUI cycles and still aren't pregnant, but thats an ongoing discussion taking lots of soul searching.

I am also a big believier in destiny and what will be will be, which is why I think I am having this little 'break down'. I have always had a very strong maternal instinct and have longed for a family, I always thought that this would be my own biological children eventually but I am starting to come to terms with the fact that that may just not happen. I think I have started the grieving process that people describe they experience when they stop treatment. I do feel guilty as I am early in the treatment journey to be pulling out, and I have never quit anything in my life! But as many of you have said, the decision to stop comes when your ready to stop, maybe I am just not meant to exhaust all aspects of fertility treatment. Perhaps I have a little family being conceived or born right this moment, and I need to start the journey to find them. I cant explain this pulling feeling I am getting towards adoption, but its there and I cant ignore it.

Thank you all you have given me much to think about and explore :)

Amy
X x X
 

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Hi again Amy,

I wouldn't look at it as quitting if you do decide not to carry on with treatment, it's more about knowing when enough is enough for you both personally and being happy to move on, you wouldn't be quitting just changing direction. We were also like you in that we said the cut off point would be after the NHS goes.  At one point after my m/c I did think I would pay for another go if the 3rd IVF was negative but then I thought if I paid for another go and that didn't work when would I stop (I'm quite competative in some things  ;D ).

Good luck whatever you decide xx 
 
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