Infertility and marriage


#1

As our anniversary is hastily approaching, I've been rather down lately about our four year battle with infertility and adoption failure. It's really putting a damper in the joy I used to receive in just being married. I still love my husband very much and I want to be with him and I really want to be happy just being a married couple again, but it's just so difficult because as the anniversaries tick away it reminds me more and more of this lack of the central part of marriage (children) that will seemingly never be a realization for us. I feel incomplete and lost as a wife, a woman, and even as a child of God and don't know what God's plan could possibly be in all of this. My joy in living out my vocation is almost completely gone. (I sometimes wonder if I chose the wrong vocation, I mean, what is the purpose of being married if you are physically sterile?) I just go through the motions. I used to be so happy, now I feel so empty, incomplete, unfulfilled. It's even getting more and more difficult to engage in marital relations as I fear they are somehow sinful, as they are unfruitful and sterile. I find myself pushing my husband away physically and emotionally. Afraid to experience the joy and happiness that once was, because I fear that God is upset that we don't give Him children, and therefore is displeased with us and our marriage. If only we tried harder, if only my health were better, then maybe we'd conceive and then God would be happy with us. I mean, why would God allow us to get married in the Church, but not allow us to be able to fulfill the Church's primary purpose for married couples...having children? It's just all so confusing to me. I'm trying to make sense of things right now and find some peace with this, it's just isn't happening no matter how hard I try. :shrug: Oh and I am seeing a counselor, a priest and am on medication for this and nothing seems to be working. :shrug:


#2

Hugs, friend!

I have often felt like a failure becuase getting pregnant is so difficult, and then when I did get pregnant, both times, it resulted in miscarriage. I feel like, why cant I do something so basic that other people can do it multiple times in their lifetime!? I also often feel like I must be a disappointment to my husbnad, even tho he has NEVER said or done anything to indicate as such, and our infertility problems could be equally his fault.

After our first miscarriage, I REALLY pulled away, phsycially and emotionally. I couldnt stand for him to touch me, and it really really hurt his feelings. For me, then and still occasionally now, every time we had sex, I thought " is this the time? is this going to make me pregnant?" It was a real mood killer!!

It took me about six months to work through it, and at the time we had just adopted our daughter, so I had that to keep me busy and my mind off of it, which does help some.

What relieved the pressure for us was to jump into adoption early on. We really felt called for it, and it totally eased the pressure. Our mindset shifted to "ok, were going ot hav eour children through adoption, and thats just how it is". Then we started being able to have sex again without all the pressure, which helped a lot.

Tell your husband how you're feeling. Be honest. Maybe give yourself a break from "trying" (you know the charting and all that nonsense) and just let happen what happens.

I'm sorry you're struggling!!! But I do think it's totally normal to be struggling under the circumstances. Tell God how you're feeling-- see if He can help you.

edited to add: in the adoption world, we often have to remind ourselves that Our Timeline is not necessarily God's Timeline. We were married four years before we came to place to pursue adoption (financial/logistical reasons). Now I'm all impatient for child number two. Every birthday that passes fo rmy daughter I think "well thats one more year she'll be older than her next sibling!" But really, we could adopt an older child and then that wouldnt be the case at all! Try to remember that God's timeline is His own-- t here might be things He wants you to experience before He blesses you with children. I think that was the case for me...


#3

I am so sorry prolifewife. :hug1: I know the feeling, I'm infertile as well (but I'm single). I know people are going to give you advice like they did with me, and it doesn't help when you are upset. :( I just wanted to let you know that I'll be praying for you. :) And your relations with your husband are not sinful, they are there to reaffirm the love between you and your husband.


#4

[quote="prolifewife, post:1, topic:181625"]
As our anniversary is hastily approaching, I've been rather down lately about our four year battle with infertility and adoption failure. It's really putting a damper in the joy I used to receive in just being married. I still love my husband very much and I want to be with him and I really want to be happy just being a married couple again, but it's just so difficult because as the anniversaries tick away it reminds me more and more of this lack of the central part of marriage (children) that will seemingly never be a realization for us. I feel incomplete and lost as a wife, a woman, and even as a child of God and don't know what God's plan could possibly be in all of this. My joy in living out my vocation is almost completely gone. (I sometimes wonder if I chose the wrong vocation, I mean, what is the purpose of being married if you are physically sterile?) I just go through the motions. I used to be so happy, now I feel so empty, incomplete, unfulfilled. It's even getting more and more difficult to engage in marital relations as I fear they are somehow sinful, as they are unfruitful and sterile. I find myself pushing my husband away physically and emotionally. Afraid to experience the joy and happiness that once was, because I fear that God is upset that we don't give Him children, and therefore is displeased with us and our marriage. If only we tried harder, if only my health were better, then maybe we'd conceive and then God would be happy with us. I mean, why would God allow us to get married in the Church, but not allow us to be able to fulfill the Church's primary purpose for married couples...having children? It's just all so confusing to me. I'm trying to make sense of things right now and find some peace with this, it's just isn't happening no matter how hard I try. :shrug: Oh and I am seeing a counselor, a priest and am on medication for this and nothing seems to be working. :shrug:

[/quote]

:hug1:
I never know if I should respond to a post from a couple struggling with infertility. That's not a cross that I bear. I have had my own set of issues in coming to accept the fertility that God gave me. Our culture in general tends to treat fertility as if it were undesirable. Infertile couples who long for a child remind us that fertility and children are desirable blessings. I am grateful for having known a couple struggling with infertility when I was struggling to accept my own fertility. Please do not feel that God is upset with you for being infertile or displeased with your marriage.


#5

I know it’s easier said than done, but try not to be so hard on yourself. Why would you think God is upset with you because you don’t give him children? He is certainly aware of the why. Also, His time-line & your time-line may not be the same (that is something I have to keep telling myself :blush: ). Just try to relax, not feel pressure & enjoy life; it is short. Also, try not to push your husband away as that will create other problems & don’t think that it (joining) is sinful as it’s not, as long as you are open to life, it will or will not happen according to His plan, but it is a beautiful thing. You are in my prayers.


#6

I’m sorry you’re feeling this way, I’m not married so I have no idea if I or my fiance are infertile, so I can’t give you advice in that regard.

But I agree with the other posters, please don’t be so hard on yourself. Why in the world would God be angry that you cannot have children right now? He made it that way, and He knows the reason. If He were angry, it would mean He’d be angry with Himself, which makes no sense if you think it out.

I do know the struggle with trusting in God’s timeline though. I used to be that way. I pushed my fiance (then boyfriend) away because I was frustrated that God was taking His merry time in allowing my fiance and I to get engaged. I was angry, frustrated, and suffered emotionally. But it was only when I completely put myself in the trust of God that I came to the realization that God is perfect, He has a plan, and although we may not know it, it is out there and will come in His time. There’s no point in struggling with it or getting angry or frustrated. Just trust. You will feel so much better and a weight will be lifted. Every time you see yourself thinking “why me” instead pray to God. And say “Jesus I trust in You” It helps get your mind on the right track.

While your timeline in life may seem to not be going how you want it, God has a plan, and it’s one you don’t know at this time. But someday you’ll look back and see that it all has worked out.


#7

I will pray for you. I know I often feel the frustration of not knowing God's plan. I will be 40 soon and I am still single. I just had to learn to accept that God was not sending a good husband my way, but there are still times when I don't like His will

As for him being mad at you, nothing could be further from the truth. God is the one who is not sending you a child. He knows it is His will and He will not hold it agaisnt you.

My mom only got pregnant once (with me) and she adopted before me. She always said 'I was willing to accept whatever God sends me' (and sometimes I think I made her have to accept a lot lol). Nonetheless, it has made an impression in my mind that no matter how far medical advances have come, God dictates when and where any baby enters into this world. Keep praying to accept his will

CM


#8

ProLifeWife:

I have been where you are for many years. I know what you are feeling. I know what you are going through. I have sent you a PM.

I will pray a Rosary for you.


#9

For what it's worth: rachelkeller.com/articles/infertilityinthebible.htm


#10

Absolutely not sinful. Tons of text have been written on this.

As for your husband, well, here’s a single guy talking, but he’s the first mortal person to whom to turn with your joys and sorrows and the first person to be with you especially in something which concerns such an aspect of your joint life as fertility. Don’t lose that by pushing him away. :wink:

As for supposed punishment or lack of worth, the rain falls on the good and the wicked alike, as Our Lord said.


#11

*(((prolifewife))) Praying for you through this.

Regarding having relations and you fearing it might be sinful...remember, sex is designed by God to be both procreative AND unitive. It is the motivation behind your relations that would cause you to not be in sin. You and your husband are both 'open' to life, and even if you are infertile, you are still both open to it. The martial embrace is not 'separated' by contraception, or a mentality that you only wish it to be unitive.

So, despite the fact that you have not been able to have children as of yet, you and your husband are very much open to life, and that is why the martial act is still procreat*ive* and unitive. The intentions that you both have, encompass both things. The outcome is not what determine the procreative part...it's the desire to be open to life.

Again, lifting you up in prayer, dear friend. I know this has been tough for you. I wish I could come up with something comforting to say, but please know, you are in my prayers. Please know that Jesus carries the cross with you...you don't have to bear the burden alone. :console:*


#12

[quote="BrokenFortress, post:6, topic:181625"]
Why in the world would God be angry that you cannot have children right now? He made it that way, and He knows the reason. If He were angry, it would mean He'd be angry with Himself, which makes no sense if you think it out.

[/quote]

I disagree that God makes anyone infertile. Yes, He knows the reason, but I think this is something He allows to happen rather than something He causes--at least most of the time. It's a fine line but an important one and it changes the nature of the resulting questions quite a bit.

God can use all things to bring about good. Prolifewife, I would pray for God to show you how to bring good into this world. I'm not infertile but I have miscarried and you see the world through different eyes after even one miscarriage, let alone three. I am truly sorry for your losses.

Talk to the Blessed Mother. Can you imagine her not wanting to have more children--or at least wondering what having more children would be like--after having Jesus? But she had a different purpose in life. I'm sure she understands and can help you find your way.


#13

*I agree with this (bolded) God doesn’t cause suffering, but sometimes, He permits it. Sometimes, He intervenes, and doesn’t allow the suffering. Prolifewife, I have recently done a lot of reflecting on this very thing. My parents died when I was little as you know. Why did God permit this, I have often asked. It must be for a very good reason…a reason that is beyond me, but at the same time, to show me that He is in control. He sees my suffering from their losses in my life, but in that suffering, I have been able to help others. In my impediments, I have been able to help others…so, while the impediments hurt me sometimes on a human level, spiritually, the story doesn’t end there. God’s plan is vast…and far reaching. What you can bring to others here on earth suffering like you, will have an eternal ripple effect.

It sometimes helps me to think this way. I will never know the mind of God…but, I think sometimes He reveals snippits of what He’s up to. :D*


#14

I think you misinterpreted what I was saying. Not in saying that God made someone infertile for a reason of them being sinful and this is to serve as a punishment. God permits it. If He wanted to, He certainly could allow them to conceive.

To me, I see it the same as any other issue with the body. God made us, and He can allow what He wants. But of course not everything on this earth is perfect, so there is suffering like this. I wasn’t saying that God made her to suffer, obviously that isn’t the case.

:shrug:

But anyways, not to derail the thread. The rest of my advice still stands.


#15

[quote="BrokenFortress, post:14, topic:181625"]
I think you misinterpreted what I was saying. Not in saying that God made someone infertile for a reason of them being sinful and this is to serve as a punishment. God permits it. If He wanted to, He certainly could allow them to conceive.

To me, I see it the same as any other issue with the body. God made us, and He can allow what He wants. But of course not everything on this earth is perfect, so there is suffering like this. I wasn't saying that God made her to suffer, obviously that isn't the case.

:shrug:

But anyways, not to derail the thread. The rest of my advice still stands.

[/quote]

am praying for you


#16

am praying for you


#17

Perhaps if you work on building your marriage.

See when the next Marriage Encounter weekend is and GO.

The other purpose of marriage is to help our spouse get to heaven. Work on growing together spiritually.

Pray together. You can pray the Divine Office online together at www.divineoffice.org


#18

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