I started seeing a therapist recently.  This is because my depression became evident to those around me.

My therapist wants to put me on antianxiety medication.  He has no idea how that might affect fertility and/or pregnancy.  I find this a little alarming.  Needless to say, I won’t be taking him up on that.

It’s very hard for me to say what I mean in my sessions.  I self-censor constantly, and I wait to be asked before volunteering information.  I talk around issues.  I watch myself doing it; I don’t know if my therapist knows I’m doing it (I assume he does).  For example:  if he asks me how I’m feeling or what happened to me over the past week, I tell him everything that happened to everyone else around me all week.  I leave myself out.

I can’t tell if this is out of some kind of perverse self-absorption (am I waiting for him to say, “No, no, I want to know about you“?), or if I really rank myself so low on the scale of interesting conversation.  I am deathly afraid of being boring.  I am afraid he will think there is nothing the matter with me; alternatively, I am afraid he will think I am totally off my rocker (that’s a technical term, of course).

Anyway, among other issues, I’ve started discussing IF with the therapist.  He has strongly suggested that I seek a second opinion from a different RE.  As I mentioned in an earlier post, I haven’t really even dipped my toe into the possibility of ART.  Here’s why, based on my experiences so far:

  • My CNM had me start charting after TTC for a year; she ordered a progesterone test that showed I am ovulating.
  • She referred me to an RE after 3 months of charting and no pregnancy.  (I think she thought I was just impatient and was going to come back pregnant.)
  • She told me to stop charting because she felt I was becoming too anxious about TTC and she thought that the charting was contributing to the anxiety.  (I did stop.)
  • I told her I suspected endo based on painful periods, heavy bleeding, rectal pain, painful intercourse.  She told me I was probably right and that I should mention that to the RE.
  • The RE ordered tests on both me and my husband (SA for him, HSG for me).  He stressed that there were basically 3 avenues open to us:  continuing to try naturally, IUI, and IVF.  I mentioned endo but he did not think that was a factor.  I asked him if I should start charting again; he said no.
  • SA was normal on all counts.  HSG showed no blockage, but a shape that the tech read as a fibroid.  She told me I would need surgery to remove it, or it would prevent embryos from implanting.  I made a follow-up appointment with the RE to discuss treatment.
  • RE was very surprised to see us; told me there was no fibroid and that my HSG was great.  He really seemed like he couldn’t figure out why we were there and was taken aback that we had believed what the tech said after the HSG.
  • He told my husband, “You’re going to get her pregnant under the Christmas tree.”  (To my husband’s credit, he refrained from correcting him with “Don’t you mean the Chanukah bush?”)  He told us there was no reason we couldn’t conceive naturally, but that if we “got impatient” we could schedule an appointment for IUI.

It just seems like there’s nothing else we can do.  I’m so uncomfortable going forwards with something like IUI without a diagnosis–which is a big part of why I feel so stuck.  I really feel like the RE shooed us out the door.

Maybe my therapist is right–maybe I need a second opinion.  If anyone’s reading, what do you think?  Should I try to find another RE, or does what we’ve experienced so far sound right to you?


6 responses to “therapist

  1. I agree with the therapist…. if the doctor isn’t listening it’s time for a new doctor who will actually 1) listen, 2) try to find out what’s going on. You are the one who knows your body, and who has to deal with this… it sounds like time for a new doctor for sure.

  2. I saw a therapist when I was first dealing with IF. She also recommended anti-anxiety meds and I also declined. (Though I asked my RE, and there are safe options for us.) I’m not sure why. I guess I just don’t want to medicate something that is situational. I also felt like there wasn’t anything wrong with me, and I was embarrassed to be taking up someone’s time. But in reality, there is something wrong. I’m going through an awful experience. And I must say, it helped. Perhaps the most valuable thing she told me is that I’m going to be unhappy until this is resolved one way or the other. Good news!

    Does yours specialize in IF or at least have experience with it? It’s particularly nice to talk to someone who knows our little landscape. In any case, I hope you find it helpful.

    Hmmm…if you feel like your RE is not listening to you, either get him to listen, or get a second opinion. I think endo can only be truly diagnosed via laparoscopy, but your symptoms sure are scary. I’d trust an RE over a tech when it comes to fibroids, though, which can usually be seen via ultrasound, and the resolution on the HSG is terrible. However, if you did end up having a lap, you’d get a hysteroscopy as well, and find out whether a fibroid is causing implantation issues. In any case, you should at least get him to convince you that endo is NOT a factor, because if it is, IUI won’t help. You’ll just waste a bunch of time.

    I totally get your lack of interest in signing up for stuff without a diagnosis. On the other hand, “unexplained” IS a diagnosis, so if that’s what you’ve been told, you may just have to get comfortable with it. My RE said with unexplained, medical science is shooting in the dark. I found that obscurely comforting. Maybe it comes down to how much patience you have. I had zero, so jumped on the IUI wagon without hesitation. Sorry to blather on for so long, probably just saying a bunch of stuff you already know…

  3. Sweet! Your therapist is spot-on when she recommends you to get a second-consult.

    Here’s what I can relate to:

    1. I ovulate on my own too. It is a miracle, because if you read around the ALI blogs, they are usually anvoulation sagas.

    2. Anti-anixiety medication: Was given that in the 2ww after I started spotting. And was recently recommended the same in Jan. I am not on any meds. There is no way I am putting my body through any more pills than what I have to swallow due to forced-choice.

    3. Mental preparedness is a real must before you take the big-leap.

    4. When I was out of my IVF cycle, my RE actually pointed out in the ‘after’ meeting, that I could conceive naturally. Woohoo! Except that I am still childless.

    5. I think you should explore meditation/breathing exercises for a bit.

    6. I think what you fellows have is ‘Unexplained IF’. I only think so, and the first thing you should get done is a proper diagnosis.

    All the best!

  4. Here from Glum Bunny’s blog – as someone with Stage IV endo, I say get a second opinion! If you want a serious suggestion, I would contact the Center for Endometriosis Care in Atlanta. They have a questionnaire you can do, and they will review your records for free and let you know what they think. No one should have to live with “painful periods, heavy bleeding, rectal pain, painful intercourse” – girl, I was THERE. I did two surgeries with a dr. who claimed she knew what she was doing…and ended up losing an ovary. My third (and I’m thinking final) surgery was done last year at CEC, and I am so thankful I finally contacted them before I lost my other one as well. My quality of life has improved so much!
    Good luck! If you have any questions, feel free to contact me at russkysfm at yahoo dot com.

  5. I’m here from Glum Bunny’s blog too. I’d say get a second opinion. From what you said your symtoms were, they should at least rule it out. Find a RE who will listen, it’s your body. And I’m wishing you tons and tons of luck too! =)

  6. Hi…. I am an advocate of a second opinion. definately go for it. If there is any doubt in your mind that your RE isn’t taking you seriously then you need to find someone else. It’s such a personal invasion all this IF stuff (testing, jabbing, personal questions) that you need to feel completely comfortable with the person doing the testing, jabbing & questioning.
    I am somewhat of a difficult patient and am always asking my clinic millions of questions and my first specialist made me feel like a complete hypochondriac for being like this… my current clinic is such a polar oposite… they know that the best way to put me at ease is to answer my questions, or run the test that i’ve requested…. they just are brilliant. I hope you find a clinic like this too, once you do you’ll feel so much more at ease with this trecherous road. Good luck!!!

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