We always thought we would have kids. We started trying when we believed we were ready. A month went by, then two months, six months, a year. Nothing happened.

Something was wrong, but nobody could tell us what - and they still can't to this day. We tried IVF three times but our results were not good. We were devastated.

Eighteen months after our last IVF cycle, we knew we would not be having our own children. And, somehow, we have moved to a life that is much different to the one we thought we'd have.

This blog is about what we do now we know we won't be having children - the thoughts, dreams, realities, sorrows, and joys that have become our new life path.

I hope you will enjoy what I will be sharing, and I hope that if you are at the point where life without children is a reality for you, that you might find some hope and inspiration here.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Mother's Day

It’s been a while yet again! I’ve been in a bit of a fog for the past few months, which I’ll write about in the next entry.

On Sunday, in Australia, it will be Mother’s Day. Along with this day will come all the familiar thoughts and emotions that those of us who can’t have children often encounter. The grief and sorrow, and even bitterness sometimes, and the “why not me?” and “what did I do wrong?”.

Last year I met one of my friends, who also can’t have children, for lunch. She said to me that one of the hardest parts for her is the messages that accompany Mother’s Day that suggest children choose their parents. For example, “thank you for choosing me to be your Mum.” It sounds like a lovely sentiment – but there is a definite sting in there for us.

As my friend said, it implies that there are children who looked at us and went “Nup – not good enough – I’ll head over to the drugged up, abusive couple down the road thank you very much.”

Or, perhaps even more difficult to fathom, the children who did come along, but didn’t stay due to miscarriage, picked us but then changed their minds.

This really hurts. It really, really hurts to think about.

Am I saying that people shouldn’t write this type of message on their Facebook walls? By no means. They should if this is what they want to do. All I’m asking is to be aware that friends and/or family members who can’t have children might find it difficult to read these kinds of sayings, and when they do they may feel their hearts break a little for the millionth time.

Be aware and be sensitive, as it’s a hard enough day for us as it is.


dublinerinDeutschland said...

That's true, it does seem extra sad for the couples who weren't 'chosen'.

Unknown said...

Hi Kate, apologies if you get my comment twice... it didn't seem to post the first time around so I'm having to rewrite it.

I've just stumbled across your blog and read through your entries after googling (for the millionth time) something along the lines of "childless...alternative life goals". This is a big struggle for me at the moment, trying to work out what alternative life I can lead now that I cannot be a mother. I feel stuck in a rut, every day is the same, and I feel like there's nothing to look forward to in my future. I have no nieces or nephews, no children in my life at all. May I ask what else you've chosen to focus on, what gives you a feeling of meaning or things to look forward to? X

Kate Bettison said...

Hi Lindsey - thanks for your comment. It is hard to work out what will give you fulfillment When all you've wanted is children and always thought that they would be the purpose for your life. It took me a while to get started on what my new or alternative journey would be (and it's still confusing sometimes and I get lost!!). For me it was about what else I could offer that would be bigger than me - so things like looking out for the environment. Also, putting a lot of energy into my fur kids whom I love so dearly - I do treat them like children...they are my kids. Kirby and I have also started to plan adventures - so actively seek out things that we want to do and then book them in - e.g. swimming with sea lions, going to Thailand (in 4 weeks - yay!), going kayaking in a place where there are dolphins, or even just going to the beach for a swim. It's really important to make time to do things that you enjoy - sometimes it's like you're studying yourself again to find out what you like and who you are. I've also got my writing which I'm doing - although I'm struggling with this at the moment. I hope this helps - please feel free to send me an email via the contact form on the blog - I'm always happy to chat one to one. xx

Mali said...

I was away during Mother's Day, but I do know what you mean. I have to say, I read things like the Fb posts you're talking about, and I just roll my eyes. Feeling a degree of scorn towards the people who so thoughtlessly wrote or shared something can be quite empowering.

Good grief !!

Samara Sant said...

I Googled "What to do with your life when you cannot have children", and I was led to this blog. I am also lost as to what to do with the rest of my life since I will be wife but not mother. I've been through all the stages of grief and then I seem to start back on square one of the grief grid. I feel like I will scream if ONE more person says, "We were trying for one more and oops twins, triplets, etc". I Pinterest "empty arms quotes", and cry quietly in my room so my husband doesn't hear. I feel like a failure as a woman, and I have this big, beautiful deathly quiet home. Empty rooms mock me, we won't put up a tree because I associate Christmas trees with Christmas morning and sleepy babies in footie jammies running and jumping into the parents bed excited for waffles and presents. UGH

Kate Bettison said...

Hi Mali - definitely! It's hard enough without the remarks! xx

Hi Samara - I really think grief never completely goes away and comes back in a circular type fashion. I've definitely been through the darkest days though when the house was so quiet, I didn't want anything to do with children (because it hurt too much), and I was so angry with the world and anyone who could have children. The feeling of failure is one of the toughest parts - feeling less of a woman... But, with time, I've learnt how to remember that I a woman and have much to give as a woman. It's not always easy though. You're in my thoughts and heart Samara and if you ever want to chat by email please do send me a message. xx