Giuliana & Bill – Connections Between Infertile Couples

Last night I had a chat with one of my Mom-Post-Infertility friends. We got onto the topic of PTSD and how so many of us who make it through to the other side of a long battle with infertility, will on some levels battle with some form of PTSD. I’ve spoken about this before. This is definitely very real for me. I don’t have the curl-yourself-in-a-ball-while-lying-in-bed-shivering-&-crying variety of PTSD. But I do struggle with a number of issues from years battling infertility and I’m not  sure these will ever fully leave me.

For the most part, I’ve packed the pain of my years of IF away, tucked in a cold, little box, somewhere deep in my subconscious but every now and then I’ll see something or hear something that will cause my heart to revisit that cold little box and unpack it for a little while and I’ll experience that pain all over again, in all its bloody, raw messiness. And it will hurt my heart and cause my eyes to brim with unshed tears.

After getting off the phone with my friend last night, I climbed into bed and started to watch Guiliana & Bill on the Style Network. Not sure how many of you have been watching there show, but it isn’t at all what I had originally thought it would be. It’s not a fluffy Hollywood story where everything is just peachy and everyone lives happily ever after. While we live thousands of miles apart, in both miles and lifestyles, I feel so deeply connected with them. Just a quick recap – they’re infertile, they’ve had one + IVF that resulted in a pregnancy which ended in miscarriage, another IVF which resulted in severe OHSS and a FET which last night we learned was negative.

Walter watched last night’s episode and he too sat glued to the screen, even from a man’s perspective, he could identify with what they were going through. During the 2ww, Giuliana was convinced the FET had worked and they were pregnant, I felt familiar squeezing sensation around my heart and that heavy pit develop in my tummy.  We watched as Bill remained somewhat detached from the hope and while he remained realistic, she became more and more convinced she was pregnant. We watched as they received the devastating news that the FET was in fact negative. We watched, identifying with all of their feelings, emotions and devastation as hope was once again stolen from them. We watched as emails of support from other infertile fans started pouring in, offering her camaraderie and encouragement. We watched as she bravely tried to read an email to Bill, from a fellow infertile, who’d written to her, offering her support, telling her how she understood what it felt like to struggle and try and try and try, while everyone around her fell pregnant naturally and had babies and moved on while they were trapped in the same, unfair, sad place. We watched as Giuliana read this email, as her voice started to quiver with unshed emotion, as her eyes filled with tears, as she leaned forward and into Bill, while he stoically put his arms around her and she cried out her heartbreak.

It was too much for me, I got up and walked out, found a quite spot and silently let the tears roll down my cheeks as I let my heart unpack that cold, hard box of pain and felt it all over again.

There is a part of me that will never fully recover from a journey that broke my heart, mended my heart, molded & shaped me.

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  • Reply To Love Bella

    I watch their show from time to time too – the last episode I caught was when she had miscarried. I can’t bear to watch shows with infertility in – it still hurst too much for me too.
    At the moment, Sharon, I am really battling to let go of it all. I desperately want to. I don’t know why I am hanging on. Could it be that it was the only life I knew, for what felt like an eternity? Because it totally and thoroughly consumed my every waking moment for 9 loooong years?
    I am thinking of seeing my therapist to help put things into perspective for me. Sometimes I feel that I cannot enjoy motherhood completely because I am being ‘held back’ by these feelings; because I am allowing it and I have no idea as to how I am supposed to control it or where to start?
    I know that I will never FORGET, but I really just want to let go and heal.

    July 13, 2011 at 11:47 am
    • Reply Sharon

      I don’t know how to let it go completley, I’m not sure I ever will be able to.

      July 13, 2011 at 1:06 pm
  • Reply Sian

    Reading this, I’m wondering if it ever truely goes away. Of course healing happens on some level, but I doubt if I’ll ever be able to go to a baby shower and not feel a tiny bit of hurt. People keep telling me that I must let go and then God will take over, but what exactly is letting go. I was thinking this morning just how many infertility scars my marriage has – and we are only starting to recover and work through that slowly. So how can it be so easy to just let go. I will carry these scars with me for a long time. You are right Shaz, it is a highly traumatic experience to go through.

    July 13, 2011 at 12:27 pm
    • Reply Sharon

      Sian, I think there’s a very big difference between letting go and letting God, which I see as trusting in His greater plan and having faith that you WILL be a mother one day and letting go of the pain from years of struggle and heartache.
      While I have fully “let go and let God” I have not found out, after 19 months of parenting, how to let go of the pain, heartache and sense of loss from my years of infertility. It’s not painful all the time and like I said, its stores somewhere deep inside me, but from time to time it does stir and I do feel sad. The good news is that those times are short lived. Not like previously when the pain would plunge me into a depression that would last week’s and months.

      Keep the faith, keep believing, you are doing a great job!

      July 13, 2011 at 1:05 pm
  • Reply Nisey

    I am so grateful to them for bringing this ugly subject out into the open, somehow having a public persona show the world what IF is like has to make a difference?

    July 13, 2011 at 12:33 pm
    • Reply Sharon

      I wish I could have all my fertile friends watch the show so they would have greater insight into my pain.
      – Show quoted text –

      July 13, 2011 at 1:05 pm
  • Reply Trish

    I also watched the show the other night and had tears in my eyes when she got the negative result. It is so interesting to me that even without the financial impact of IVF (I assume the cost is not really a factor for them) she still battled to decide to do another IVF because it is just so draining physically and emotionally. It was such a validation that it is HARD for all of us because it seems when other celebrities talk about having IF treatment, the media makes it seem so easy.
    I am also struggling to let go and my boys are 4 and 2 and a half! The other weekend we were away with good friends who were so supportive during our treatment and they gleefully announced to all they they were pg again and weren’t even trying and some jokes about how he has super sperm and just has to look at her and she is preggers and I just sat there stunned with a lump in my throat just trying not to cry. I don’t get it as I have my 2 beautiful boys which is more than I ever dreamed yet why can’t I just move on and be happy for others and not automatically be transported back to that dark place of thoughts of “that will never be our exprerience” I feel cheated that becoming a parent was just never that happy and joyful experience for us. I hate feeling like that and need to focus on the positives but I can’t make myself forget.

    July 13, 2011 at 1:28 pm
  • Reply sue stuart

    I don’t think that pain will ever disappear completely – it consumed us for so many years that it’s impossible to forget it, I think. What I do hope is that it’s made me more conscious of others’ pain – whether infertility or other issues – and made me realise that we all have something going on that needs understanding and compassion.

    July 13, 2011 at 3:19 pm
  • Reply charne

    I remeber watching up to first ivf attempy and my heart broke for them!! I rmember quickly googling to see if the season we were watching qas old and if they were now preggies, checked their fb page, etc. I think we will always in some way be connected to them and their show is just so real

    July 14, 2011 at 5:21 am
  • Reply Angela

    You are so right, I think we all have these little cold boxes within ourselves and they get opened sometimes at the most unexpected times. I have a friend who is going through a miscarriage and she phoned for my advice and it bought my miscarriages back as if they were yesterday. We never forget, our experiences just mold us into the people we now are. Isn’t it nice to know though, that thru our awful experiences, we have made such wonderful friends who in our hours of need, really understand what we are going thru.,

    July 14, 2011 at 7:09 am
  • Reply Paula

    I actually cant watch that show anymore. I think they are really brave for being so open and honest about their journey, I think it must be so painful on an entirely different level, to live it so in the open.

    July 14, 2011 at 8:39 am
  • Reply reluctantmom

    I watch the show on occassion, and I cry and feel her pain … can’t imagine what it must do to you.

    July 14, 2011 at 11:14 am
  • Reply yvettene

    I love their show now, did not at first but now I never miss it. I admire them for allowing the world into such a private and painful space. It will always be with us just in varying degrees depending on our current situations.

    July 14, 2011 at 10:13 pm
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