“Are you going to try for another baby?”
Oddly enough, I get this question from complete strangers more than I do from my family and friends. Probably, it’s because my friends and family are sensitive to our infertility and know that the simple question warrants a complicated answer. And probably because strangers are needlessly nosy. I’ve been asked this question while in the checkout line with my son at the grocery store, by other moms at the library, and even by the photographer who took our holiday photos this year. When did others’ reproductive choices become the topic of casual conversation? I mean, what answer would they like?
I’ll have another baby when I have better health insurance that will pay for IVF?
I’ll have another baby when I can save up $12,000 or so to pay out of pocket for another IVF cycle, and hope that it works on the first try because it would take winning the lottery to afford one, let alone more than one?
I’ll have another baby if I ever get my period again, and if the quality of my husband’s sperm improves enough that we can have a baby without interventions?
I’ll have another baby if, when we somehow have the money for another cycle, our frozen embryo survives the thawing process, implants, and develops?
Yeah, that’s probably not where they saw the conversation going. It’s not that I want to avoid the subject. I’d welcome answering the question for friends and family, and I’ve certainly blogged enough about our infertility. It just makes my skin prickle when strangers ask me the question. I used to laugh it off saying, “One is enough for now,” as if my hands were impossibly full and I couldn’t fathom having another child in tow. And, while it wasn’t entirely untrue, it also was not a fully truthful answer. Now, I usually give the vague, yet telling, answer of, “If we’re able to,” and that sort of gives them something to ponder, like maybe it’s not a simple yes or no. There’s a big difference between wanting another baby and being able to. A very heartbreaking difference that I don’t feel like discussing with every stranger that asks.
Are we going to try for another baby? If we are able to. It’s a question I can’t answer right now with any certainty. But I can certainly say I hope to one day try.