Single & NOT Pregnant

This holiday, not only was I surrounded by my immediate family, as most are, but also by my work family. They care deeply about me and I’m grateful for that. But one thing that bothers me is being asked when and if I will have children. Repeatedly, day after day. Most of my coworkers know my diagnosis and still like to badger me about it anyway, because they think it’s funny. I’ll be very blunt and tell you all, it’s not.

When are you going to settle down and start a family? You’re so good at caring for others.”

A very loaded question, especially when they don’t see beyond the mask I often wear that would unveil how sick I truly am on most days.

The truth is, many women who live with IBD may have a hard time with the decision to have children. For some, it’s not a decision, as other parts of their health may factor into things. If someone has endometriosis and is unable to bear children, hearing the question “When are you going to start a family?” can be daunting to dance around lightly, especially without letting it get to you. Even though genetically, IBD can be passed down, the likelihood of it occurring in offspring is actually very small.

I noticed when I turned 30 that all different types of people had a say in what I should be doing with my body now that I’ve reached a certain age. Apparently, they think it’s very simple to find a mate who would take all of my “baggage” and own it like it was his own. Let me tell you that life doesn’t always go according to plan and for the last 10 years, if you would have asked me if I wanted children, I would have laughed and said: “heck no”!

But now, things have changed.

I know that I AM getting older, don’t have a partner and right now with my illness, taking care of myself is hard enough to do and I don’t have children. It’s hard to get people to realize that and it’s hard to say out loud when you, yourself don’t want to hear it.

I would be so blessed if God had bigger plans for me and gave me the opportunity for a more structured life.. with a husband, and some dogs and a stable living environment…. and maybe some kids. But at this point in my life, it’s hard telling people (and also myself), that I have a harder time taking care of myself when I am ill and it would be selfish of me to try and change that and add another person into that equation.

Be gentle with your words.

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See the full post here:  Single and NOT Pregnant

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8 thoughts on “Single & NOT Pregnant

  1. Agreed! It’s generally not a good economic idea (at least for people in America) to get married if they are on disability/Medicaid or planning to apply for it, since your spouse’s income will count against you.

    I’m married and I’m not sure if I want to have kids because while I could go into remission during pregnancy (according to my GI, there’s about a 1/3 chance of that), there’s also a chance it could blow my Crohn’s completely out of control (according to my GI, there’s about a 1/3 chance of that as well).

    I’m also starting Humira soon, and I feel that we have limited data on how Humira affects the baby through the placenta and breastmilk.

    *All* of the biologics are new-ish; most have been on the market for Crohn’s patients for less than 20 years, so we have no idea, really, how a baby birthed from a mom who took a biologic either before or during pregnancy will do when the baby is grown.

    Since I went to law school before I got Crohn’s, and since I got to read in personal injury classes how things like DES and such affected babies decades after their moms took the medication, I’m leery. Can I handle the long-term consequences of pregnancy and childbirth and parenting with my disease? I’m not sure.

    Right now, I’m the proud mommy of two boy kitties, and that’s enough. Maybe one day I’ll be an aunt. Maybe one day I’ll adopt. All of these are acceptable answers.

    While you can get pregnant and parent with Crohn’s, it’s not easy because parenting requires energy, a quality which Crohn’s patients are notoriously short on. It’s a tough decision to make, either way.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I suggest looking at Mother-to-Baby. They are a fantastic resource for expectant or thinking to be expectant mothers. They answer MANY questions and concerns, like your Humira concern. Many biologics are very safe and effective throughout pregnancy. I refer people to them all the time. 🙂 Good luck on your research.

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  2. Thanks for sharing this ❤ Married, unmarried— pregnancy and starting a family is always a huge consideration when you're coping with a complex diagnosis whether or not it directly effects your reproductive capabilities. IBD is so unpredictable…and so is pregnancy and parenting. Having to hardcore plan and coordinate for a special event with the possibility of being in a flare is one thing…considering making a plan to be a parent with the possibility of having ongoing flares is like…an impossible decision. One of those things I'm waiting on the universe to guide me with…wishing you lots of love and patience and reminders that you are not alone!!!

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  3. Pingback: Monday Magic – Inspiring Blogs for You! | Pain Pals

  4. Thanks for sharing this – whilst my chronic health issues are different, it has not been easy being a mum particularly for the last 10 years and we now know that my problems are genetic(Ehlers Danlos Syndrome). I now have problems with my gut, autonomic nervous system, dislocations and more – my daughter was diagnosed last year, and I just hope that her symptoms will not progress. But would I be without my 3 (now 21, 18 & 15)? Despite the fact the eldest has just moved back home & is driving us mad, no! It has to be an individual choice – and that doesn’t mean it is an easy one to make. I have shared your link on my regular PainPals feature “Monday Magic – Inspiring Blogs for You!” Claire x

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    • I saw that Claire! Thank you – I wasn’t aware of your page, so I gave you a follow and looking forward to seeing new things on your blog. Thank you so much for sharing your story with me. I will continue to pray that things go well for you and your family. ❤

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  5. I don’t have kids, and ever since my husband and I got married a couple years ago, people constantly asking when we’ll start trying. I would love to have kids, but I don’t know how that works with multiple (and unpredictable) illnesses. What if I have a flare and can’t get out of bed? What if pregnancy makes my symptoms worse, and I don’t recover after? What if some of the medications I’m on are deemed safe for pregnancy, but my baby is born with complications? I don’t think it’s fair to put a baby through any of that, and I’d feel awful if the baby inherited any of my health issues.

    The decision to have or not have kids has never been an easy one, even for healthy people, but there is so much more to consider with illness. You’ll find what’s right for you.

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  6. I know how you feel, I am single and have no children or a property of my own all the things society expects. My younger Sister has all these and it makes it tough to accept it will probably never happen for me. I know I would not be able to cope with a child as it is hard enough looking after myself.

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