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Archive for the ‘National Infertility Awareness Week’ tag

Listen Up! World Parenthood: It Takes a Village

By Tracey Minella

April 24th, 2017 at 9:06 am

Hope you can all hear me from up on this soapbox*. So LISTEN UP:

Those tree-hugging hippies who imagined we’d have world peace if we all just loved one another…like, right now…were on to something. Not sure it works for the world peace thing, but for World Parenthood—oh, yes. Definitely. If we all just loved one another, we could all become parents. (No, I don’t mean it that way!) But it will literally take a village to bring parenthood to the world.

Here’s the plan:

To the women who never had fertility problems or experienced loss. Be quiet. Really. Your nagging questions are hurtful, your advice is unsolicited, and you don’t understand. You never will understand. Don’t pretend you can. Want to help? Really want to make a difference? Just say you’re sorry and “listen up” if and when we choose to speak about it. You wish you could do something more? Well, you can.

LISTEN UP: You’ve got working parts—use them for others. Donate your eggs. Donate your uterus and be a surrogate or gestational carrier for another couple. Do it for someone you know. Or for a stranger. Whatever works for you. Too much to ask? Then donate money. Give to a couple that can’t afford fertility treatment. If handing over the cash is awkward, then buy them something they need or pay for a service they use so they can put that freed-up money into their fertility fund instead. Stop with the sweaters and give cash or a credit card gift card for holidays. Give to fertility fundraisers, grant programs, and infertility organizations like Resolve. Just help someone. And for the love of all things holy, lighten up on the relentless Facebook baby posts and false pregnancy jokes.

To the women who overcame their fertility problems. You know better. You do understand. And yet you are different now. You are on the other side. Don’t you dare pretend it didn’t ever happen—or that it was just a black hole in your past. Don’t just move on with your miracle. Look back.

LISTEN UP: You have an obligation to those who haven’t left their journeys—and to those who will suffer after you. Do something. Offer something. Anything. Educate others. Become an infertility advocate. Raise awareness by participating in a Walk of Hope or other event. If you are able to do so, donate eggs or lend your uterus to a needy couple. And please, please, please…if you did IVF and your family is complete, consider Embryo Donation of the embryos you won’t be using—it would be the answer to another couple’s prayers. If more couples really considered and felt comfortable with this option, rather than discarding or donating them to research, the impact on world parenthood would be monumental. And always, offer the right words of encouragement as only you can. Or the shoulder you needed to cry on.

To all men and women, heterosexual or homosexual: Unite. Donate what you have to your cause and the cause of others. Be supportive.

LISTEN UP: We all need something from each other to create our families. Gay men need eggs or embryos and a uterus. Women need sperm. If you have something someone else needs—eggs, sperm, embryos, a uterus—consider giving or lending freely. Make a real difference. Help create a life that will be loved beyond measure by a loving person or couple desperate to have a baby. Your contribution may make the process affordable for couples who would otherwise not be able to access or afford these services on top of standard IVF costs. Look into your heart and see if there is something you can do to help someone else become a parent. Someone you love needs help having a baby. Your help. Give that gift.

It takes a village to make world parenthood a reality. Step up. LISTEN UP.

*This post, for National Infertility Awareness Week 2017, is the view point of the author and may or may not reflect the position or feelings of Long Island IVF and its physicians.

http://www.infertilityawareness.org/

 

 

 

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Happy Infertility Awareness Week?

By Tracey Minella

April 23rd, 2017 at 9:50 pm

 

image courtesy of Resolve


Well, there’s an oxymoron for you. Nothing should begin with the word “happy” and include the word “infertility”, if you ask me. For the infertility patient, every single minute of every draining day is Infertility Awareness Day.  So, giving us just a week in the national spotlight is kind of insulting. Don’t you think?

So, how do we mark this week? Is there a greeting card for this occasion? It certainly doesn’t seem like a celebration is in order, right? No one’s boss is sending flowers or candy. If the boss even knows.

It’s not like we can go around posting pictures of negative pregnancy tests sticks or injection site bruises on social media. Or can we?

So how do we call attention to “our week” when so many of us haven’t even told our closest friends and family that we’re suffering from infertility yet?  In fact, many patients understandably go to incredible lengths just to keep the boss and co-workers in the dark, for reasons ranging from unfounded but real embarrassment to the fear of losing their jobs…and insurance benefits (*insert sarcastic laugh)…upon discovery of their “secret”. [We’ve got a great workshop for you silent types, so check it out below.]

No one can understand the intensity and rawness of the range of emotions of an infertility patient … unless they are an infertility patient. Not your mother, your doctor, your best friend, or even your spouse. It’s something only you can feel the true depths of.  And calling attention to this week may not make you feel better. But it is necessary. Why?

Over the years, raising awareness of infertility has ever so slowly resulted in increased insurance coverage and benefits and more grant programs to defer some of the costs of treatment. In addition, raising awareness has also helped patients find blogs and support groups to help them through this journey, so please consider following Long Island IVF on social media and our blog, The Fertility Daily. Awareness is critically important in today’s political climate– there are “personhood amendment” bills popping up regularly that may threaten the very future of IVF if passed in their current forms—so it’s definitely time to stay vigilant and make our representatives “Listen UP!” And that’s the theme for this year’s NIAW. Listen UP!

Speaking of supporting our patients—and the suffering public as well—Long Island IVF has four (4) free events this week and next in our Melville office to “celebrate” NIAW and we encourage you register to come to as many as you’d like. All are welcome. Here they are:

Yoga for Fertility Night” on April 26th with Lisa Pineda! Learn and do the poses designed to help your body become more receptive to pregnancy through stress reduction, increased blood flow to the uterus, and more. Register here for free. Spots go fast. This was wildly popular last time we offered it!

Acupuncture for Fertility Symposium” on April 27th, offers a live demo of fertility acupuncture—a holistic and ancient therapy offered at Long Island IVF by our own Dr. David Kreiner, the area’s first and only known reproductive endocrinologist who is also a certified and practicing medical acupuncturist. Learn from a panel of experts how some patients may improve their chances of IVF success by using this complementary therapy—even if they tried IVF unsuccessfully in the past. Register here for free.

New Beginnings through Donor Egg Seminar” on May 2nd. Donor Egg is not usually the first step for people seeking to build a family and many people have suffered a long time, through disappointment and loss, before opening up to the possibility of building their family with donor egg. If you find yourself open to exploring a program that many women later confess they wish they considered sooner, please join us to learn more from our supportive and compassionate donor egg team of doctors and nurses. Hear from one of our many successful donor egg recipient moms and ask your questions. Register here for free.

Tired of the Secret? Workshop” on May 4th. In an effort to help those couples who want or need to come out of the infertility closet and tell their family and friends or employers—but don’t know how to do it—we are bringing back this popular workshop from Coming Out Infertile Day last November. Led by our Mind-Body Program and infertility specialist, Bina Benisch, MS, RN, couples or individuals who want to “come out” are given counsel and guidance to work through the issues that are blocking them, as well as suggestions on how to navigate that important conversation so they can unburden themselves and get the support they need from their loved ones. Register here for free.

And just as National Infertility Awareness Week will come and go, so too will this journey you are on. Even if it seems never-ending at times. It will end.

And because we raise infertility awareness, the technology gets better every day, and your chances for a happy ending get better daily, too.

Well, look at that…a sentence with the words “happy” and “infertility” in it. Things are looking up.

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Are you coming to one of our NIAW events? Which one(s)?

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8 Things to #StartAsking and #KEEPAsking after #NIAW

By Tracey Minella

April 30th, 2016 at 4:43 pm

 

image courtesy of Resolve, the National Infertility Association


Honestly, my first reaction to this year’s NAIW #StartAsking theme wasn’t positive. It just didn’t sit right with me for some nagging reason I couldn’t put my finger on. So, it was hard to sit down and write a post using it. It made me have to really think about some serious and difficult things. Stuff I usually keep locked away. Some days, I just don’t have the strength to think too hard.

Start Asking.

Start Asking why? Start asking how? Start asking for something?

Start asking…what, exactly?

Should I start asking Why me? Truth be told, that was the first thing that came to mind. But there is no point in asking that question. So what is worth asking?

Then it dawned on me. We need to start asking for whatever it is we need in order to get through this journey (or to see that those who follow us can get through it). It’s that simple. And that difficult.

That means asking for help, for understanding, for respect, for answers, for kindness, for prayers, for coverage, and for action.

Start asking yourself what you need. And who can fill that need?

  1. Help: It’s hard to ask for financial help but if it’s the only barrier to treatment, you may have to ask. Loans, gifts, online fundraising sites are some ways to finance fertility treatment. Most IVF practices offer grants as well. Ask for help.
  2. Understanding: No one will truly get it unless they’ve battled infertility themselves. But they need to try to understand why it’s too hard for you to handle things like baby showers, egg hunts, and gender reveal parties for a couple’s 5th baby. Tell them you’re happy for them, but it hurts too much to participate right now. Ask them to understand.
  3. Respect: Everyone has advice on how you should be handling your infertility journey. Regardless of their personal (and usually uneducated) opinions, they need to respect the decisions you’re making…whether that involves IUI,  IVF, egg donation, donor sperm, surrogacy, egg freezing, pre-implantation genetic screening, adoption, or choosing to live child-free. Ask them to respect your right to make your own decisions.
  4. Answers: There is no such thing as a stupid question, at least when it comes to infertility treatment. So much is on the line that you owe it to yourself to understand the often complicated and ever-changing world of assisted reproductive technology. Understand what is happening to your body during any given treatment or procedure, including the medications you’re taking, how to take them, and any possible side-effects.  Knowledge is power. Ask questions if you don’t understand something.
  5. Kindness: Similar to respect, you deserve to be treated kindly. People can be mean…on purpose or innocently. “Why can’t you give me grandchildren?” “He just looks at me and I get pregnant”. “You can have one of mine.” “I’ll get her pregnant for you”. “Be thankful you have one.” Protect your heart. Ask people to stop saying hurtful things like that.
  6. Prayers: For the religious, infertility (especially a long journey filled with losses) can sometimes be a test of one’s faith. Don’t feel guilty asking why this is happening to you or questioning why your prayers are not being answered. If your faith is a source of comfort and strength to you and also to those you know, ask for their prayers or good thoughts on your behalf.
  7. Coverage: As you no doubt know, the biggest barrier to infertility treatment is often lack of health insurance coverage. Most policies offer little to no coverage for fertility treatments like IVF. The only hope for change lies in advocating for new legislation mandating better infertility coverage. Ask your elected representatives to create or support legislation mandating IVF coverage.
  8. Action: Start asking is a good start. It’s a catchy theme for NIAW. It’s good to raise awareness. One week per year. But that’s not enough. We need infertility action not just infertility awareness. The week is over. Tomorrow we risk being forgotten until next April (or at least until we resurrect Coming Out Infertile Day in November). And those baby shower invites will still flood the mailbox. Those nagging personal questions will not abate. And those uncovered infertility costs will still prevent many from accessing the treatments they need to become parents. Ask yourself and others to take action for real change.

I guess my issue with the theme this year, or maybe every year, is just a frustration over the slow pace of change. And the poor collective memory of the public. Tomorrow will not only start a new week, but a new month. A new “awareness” cause to push. By Friday, will anyone still be aware of infertility? Will they still be ASKING? We don’t need to just #StartAsking. We need to #KEEPAsking.

Let’s show our appreciation for –and join–all the tireless infertility advocates who support the infertile folks of today through activism, advocacy, blogging, and more. To the extent you can, join the fight. Consider participating in Advocacy Day . Don’t just start asking. Keep asking. Then keep acting until real change happens. Until we have babies for all.

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What did you #StartAsking? What will you #KeepAsking?

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Long Island IVF-WINNER: Best in Vitro Fertility Practice 2015 AND 2016

It is with humble yet excited hearts that we announce that Long Island IVF was voted the Best In Vitro Fertility Practice in the Best Of Long Island 2015 and 2016 contest…two years in a row!

The doctors, nurses, embryologists, and the rest of the Long Island IVF staff are so proud of this honor and so thankful to every one of you who took the time to vote. From the moms juggling LIIVF babies… to the dads coaching LIIVF teens…to the parents sending LIIVF adults off to college or down the aisles… to the LIIVF patients still on their journeys to parenthood who are confident in the care they’re receiving…we thank you all.

We love what we’ve gotten to do every day more than 28 years…build families. If you are having trouble conceiving, please call us. Many of our nurses and staff were also our patients, so we really do understand what you’re going through. And we’d like to help. 631-752-0606.

 

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#StartAsking About National Infertility Awareness Week 2016

By Tracey Minella

April 25th, 2016 at 1:16 pm

 

National Infertility Awareness Week (NIAW) kicked off yesterday with this year’s theme being #StartAsking, according to Resolve, the National Infertility Association.

The sobering stats show that 1 in 8 couples suffer from infertility. Despite those significant numbers, a social stigma persists that often forces affected couples to suffer in silence. That has to change.

NIAW is an annual tradition, with a calendar of events, activities, ideas and suggestions on how to raise awareness of infertility in the hope of removing the stigma, enacting legislation to mandate better coverage for infertility/adoption services, encouraging people to “come out” of the infertility closet, and getting people the financial and emotional support they need to battle infertility.

Long Island IVF is presenting an informative FREE Symposium: “Improving IVF Success with Acupuncture”. It is jam packed with eight (8) experts, and is scheduled right after NIAW—on May 12th from 6:30-8:30 pm in our Melville office.

Long Island IVF is the only fertility practice in the region that has a reproductive endocrinologist who is also a certified acupuncturist. Co-founder, David Kreiner, MD went back to the classroom after 30 years of family-building to study and now offer this affordable, complementary therapy in an effort to potentially boost IVF success rates. Register today.

Don’t miss this exciting lineup of experts:

  • Western Medicine Approach to Infertility
    David Kreiner, MD, Reproductive Endocrinologist and NYS Certified Medical Acupuncturist
  • Acupuncture Diagnosis and How Treatment is Individualized
    James Shinol, Licensed Acupuncturist
  • Fertility Enhancement with Diminished Ovarian Reserve – Improving Ovarian Stimulation
    XinJuan Yang, PhD, MD (China), Licensed Acupuncturist
  • Fertility and Diet
    Roberta Siegelson, Licensed Acupuncturist
  • PCOS and Acupuncture
    Christine Bauer, DC, Licensed Acupuncturist
  • Enhancing Uterine Receptivity
    Ping Zhu, PhD, MD (China), Licensed Acupuncturist
  • Acupuncture to Minimize Risk of Miscarriage
    Mike Berkley, Licensed Acupuncturist
  • Japanese Acupuncture
    James Vitale, Licensed Acupuncturist

 

We look forward to seeing you there!

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What are you doing to “start talking” about infertility this week?

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Long Island IVF-WINNER: Best in Vitro Fertility Practice 2015 AND 2016

It is with humble yet excited hearts that we announce that Long Island IVF was voted the Best In Vitro Fertility Practice in the Best Of Long Island 2015 and 2016 contest…two years in a row!

The doctors, nurses, embryologists, and the rest of the Long Island IVF staff are so proud of this honor and so thankful to every one of you who took the time to vote. From the moms juggling LIIVF babies… to the dads coaching LIIVF teens…to the parents sending LIIVF adults off to college or down the aisles… to the LIIVF patients still on their journeys to parenthood who are confident in the care they’re receiving…we thank you all.

We love what we’ve gotten to do every day more than 28 years…build families. If you are having trouble conceiving, please call us. Many of our nurses and staff were also our patients, so we really do understand what you’re going through. And we’d like to help. 631-752-0606.

 

 

 

 

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Confessions of a National Infertility Awareness Week “Hater”

By Tracey Minella

April 27th, 2015 at 8:12 am

I hate infertility. I hate that people are so clueless… and their words and actions are so hurtful …that we have to raise their awareness of our pain and educate them about this disease. And I hate that NIAW is just a week long.

Then, in many ways, life just goes back “normal”. To the unacceptable normal. Starting now.

Sure, last week we certainly raised awareness in the community. We hosted a series of events including a seminar about the donor egg program and a fun fertile yoga class. We ended the week with Alternative Medicine and Holistic Approaches to Fertility Enhancement which included demos of fertility-focused acupuncture and Reiki, along with massage therapy, meditation and stress reduction techniques.

We bonded with patients from our own practice, as well as those from other practices, and they bonded with each other. We welcomed prospective patients, their parents and friends, and interested strangers. We fed them fertility-friendly trail mix, donned them with NIAW silicone bracelets, and sent them home with swag bags of fun and useful items and coupons from the participating service providers. We empowered them with therapies and activities they can use to take back some control over their fertility. They were thankful and such a pleasure to get to know. In short, we did some good. As did other infertility practices and organizations around the country.

But, now NIAW is over. And it’s kind of quiet.

How do we keep the momentum of NIAW going? How do we make sure the topic of infertility doesn’t get swept under the rug until next April?

One way is to move on swiftly and loudly to the next thing that keeps infertility in the news. Maybe that means joining thousands of infertility advocates by going to Washington D.C. for Advocacy Day on May 14, 2015. Or participating in Walks of Hope to raise infertility awareness. [For more info contact at RESOLVE http://www.resolve.org/ ]. Or seeking out charitable organizations that award grants to infertile folks, like the Tinina Q. Cade Foundation, the BabyQuest Foundation, and others, some of which have grant application deadlines approaching soon.

As for Long Island IVF, we’re doing our part to keep infertility awareness front of mind…and donating a free IVF cycle as a door prize to one lucky winner…through a fun night at the Great South Bay Brewery on June 4, 2015.

Along with the Cade Foundation, Long Island IVF is happy to sponsor its “Brew for the Family” event, which includes a night of food, music, craft beer-sampling, brewery tours, souvenir glasses, a silent auction and more…plus a chance (or 2 chances for VIP ticket holders) to win the free IVF cycle door prize. Regular tickets cost $55, date night tickets for two cost $100, and VIP tickets cost $90. The free IVF cycle door prize is transferable in accordance with the contest rules, so bring your generous fertile friends and family down to increase your chances to win.

To get more information on the event and purchase tickets go here: http://bit.ly/1yvDBit or to go directly to ticket sales click here: www.librewforthefamily.eventbrite.com

Let’s keep the conversations about infertility going…

 

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Will you be there?

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Long Island “Brew For the Family” Event- June 4, 2015

Would winning a FREE IVF Cycle door prize help you or a loved one build a family?

Join us on Thursday, June 4th, 2015 from 7:30-10PM at the Long Island Brew for the Family event hosted in partnership with the Tinina Q. Cade Foundation.

We have come together to spread the message that infertility can be overcome! Enjoy a night out and forget the stress of infertility as we sample craft beers at one of Long Island’s premier microbreweries, The Great South Bay Brewery. The evening will include a sampling of 6 beers, guided brewery tours with a master brewer, great food, music, and a silent auction.

Each admission ticket will include one entry into the drawing for a FREE IVF CYCLE* door prize. Be sure to invite your family and friends for even more chances to win, as the prize is transferrable.

To purchase tickets and learn more about this event please visit: www.librewforthefamily.eventbrite.com.

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Long Island IVF-WINNER: Best in Vitro Fertility Practice 2015

It is with humble yet excited hearts that we announce that Long Island IVF was voted the Best In Vitro Fertility Practice in the Best Of Long Island 2015 contest.

The doctors, nurses, embryologists, and the rest of the Long Island IVF staff are so proud of this honor and so thankful to every one of you who took the time to vote. From the moms juggling LIIVF babies… to the dads coaching LIIVF teens…to the parents sending LIIVF adults off to college or down the aisles… to the LIIVF patients still on their journeys to parenthood who are confident in the care they’re receiving…we thank you all.

We love what we’ve gotten to do every day more than 27 years…build families. If you are having trouble conceiving, please call us. Many of our nurses and staff were also our patients, so we really do understand what you’re going through. And we’d like to help.

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NIAW Special Promo on Long Island IVF Event with Free IVF Door Prize!

By Tracey Minella

April 22nd, 2015 at 1:34 pm

In celebration of National Infertility Awareness Week, Long Island IVF is offering a special now through April 25, 2015…

During National Infertility Awareness Week, if you buy a regular admission ticket to the Brew for the Family event that we are hosting with The Tinina Q. Cade Foundation, you will receive two (2) entries into the drawing for the Free IVF cycle door prize instead of one!!! That’s two chances to win a Free IVF cycle for only a $55 admission ticket.

So on Thursday, June 4th,  from 7:30-10:00 pm you get a great night out at the Great South Bay Brewery which includes plenty of great food and music, plus beer sampling of several craft beers, a brewery tour, souvenir glass, silent auction for additional great prizes, and more.

Click here for more information http://bit.ly/1yvDBit.

To purchase tickets please visit: www.librewforthefamily.eventbrite.com. The promo is automatically applied so no code is required.

And if you’re into getting out during the week, join us for the last two fun NIAW events from 7-9 pm in our Melville office:

Fertile Yoga Night Tonight

Yoga with a Baby Goal! Created for both newbies and yoga devotes, this is your chance to participate in a yoga session specifically geared to potentially enhance your fertility. Bring your mat or a towel (and yoga pants or gym wear) and experience mediation, breathing and stretching designed to reduce stress, lessen muscle tension and increase blood flow to the pelvis. You’ll be guided by Lisa Pineda, an instructor experienced in yoga for fertility who will leave you relaxed and wanting more. Light refreshments.

 

Alternative Medicine & Holistic Approaches to Fertility Enhancement Night Tomorrow

This interactive evening will highlight Mind-Body and holistic medicine practices including meditation techniques, breath work, Reiki, massage therapy and a live demonstration of fertility-focused acupuncture. LIIVF’s own Dr. David Kreiner will discuss acupuncture and Bina Benisch, MS RN and other affiliated local practitioners will lead the other discussions/demos. Additionally, Rachel Liberatore, LMT, from Nu Touch Therapy will be providing free chair massages. Jim Vitale of Suffolk County Acupuncture will give a live demo of fertility-focused acupuncture, too. Don’t miss this chance to learn how to help yourself reduce stress and improve your own fertility. Light refreshments.

The events are FREE, but pre-registration is required. If you’ve been trying to conceive without success, please RSVP immediately to reserve your spot by contacting our Patient Services Coordinator, Lindsay Montello at 631-386-5509 or lmontello@liivf.com. You do not have to be a Long Island IVF patient to attend. Feel free to bring your partner or a friend.

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Are you coming?

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Happy National Infertility Awareness Week #NIAW

By Tracey Minella

April 20th, 2015 at 10:55 am

 

 

Well, it’s the biggest week of the year in the infertile world… National Infertility Awareness Week. NIAW, for short.

I confess I hate saying “Happy” before “National Infertility Awareness Week”. Those suffering know there’s nothing “happy” about it. Not a club anyone wants to belong to. No reason to buy balloons or a cake.

But celebrate we will. We must. Because we are celebrating you.

We celebrate you for your strength and resolve in the face of what may be the greatest challenge of your life so far. In overcoming great emotional, physical, and financial stress. We recognize that no matter what pain and losses you’ve faced to date, you find the strength to get out of bed each day and continue to fight for your dream of a family.

This week, Long Island IVF has both educational and fun events to celebrate you, distract you,  and to help spread infertility awareness. All events are from 7:00pm-9:00pm at the Melville office and will offer light refreshments.

 

Here is the lineup of FREE events:

 

Donor Egg Recipient Seminar (Tuesday):

Learn everything you need to know about the Donor Egg process. Learn why some women can benefit from donor eggs, how egg donors are thoroughly screened, how the process works, the competitive success rates of our program, and so much more. Meet the Donor Egg Team and hear a testimonial from one of our many successful and happy moms. Light refreshments.

 

Fertile Yoga Night (Wednesday):

Yoga with a Baby Goal! Created for both newbies and yoga devotes, this is your chance to participate in a yoga session specifically geared to potentially enhance your fertility. Bring your mat or a towel (and yoga pants or gym wear) and experience mediation, breathing and stretching designed to reduce stress, lessen muscle tension and increase blood flow to the pelvis. You’ll be guided by Lisa Pineda, an instructor experienced in yoga for fertility who will leave you relaxed and wanting more. Light refreshments.

 

Alternative Medicine and Holistic Approaches to Enhancing Fertility Night (Thursday):

This interactive evening will highlight Mind-Body and holistic medicine practices including meditation techniques, breath work, Reiki, massage therapy and a live demonstration of fertility-focused acupuncture. LIIVF’s own Dr. David Kreiner will discuss acupuncture and Bina Benisch, MS RN and other affiliated local practitioners will lead the other discussions/demos. Additionally, Rachel Liberatore, LMT, from Nu Touch Therapy will be providing free chair massages. Jim Vitale of Suffolk County Acupuncture will give a live demo of fertility-focused acupuncture, too. Don’t miss this chance to learn how to help yourself reduce stress and improve your own fertility. Light refreshments, including Dr. Kreiner’s special secret fertility friendly trail mix!!!

 

 

Again, all events are FREE, but pre-registration is required. If you’ve been trying to conceive without success, please RSVP immediately to reserve your spot by contacting our Patient Services Coordinator, Lindsay Montello at 631-386-5509 or lmontello@liivf.com. You do not have to be a Long Island IVF patient to attend. Feel free to bring your partner or a friend.

Please come out to one or all of these events. Please help us raise awareness of infertility this week by sharing this post. Someone you know is suffering. You can help.

Did I mention the secret trail mix?

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Will we see you at one of these events? Can you guess what’s in the secret trail mix?

 

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Resolve to Know More About The War of Infertility: Surviving and Thriving

By Tracey Minella

April 25th, 2014 at 12:08 pm

 

credit: Ambro/freedigitalphotos.net


Okay. I lied. It’s just about surviving. The thriving only comes when the baby arrives. If the baby arrives.

And the reality of that “if” makes infertility a war. It’s what throws us into survival mode. We battle infertility. We suffer infertility. And every month when we lose another battle, we bleed. Literally and emotionally and financially. We question if we can recover from yet another blow. And like a wounded soldier trembling alone in a trench at night, we look up at the stars and make our secret bargains with the universe. And we worry if we’ll ever win this war and go back to a normal life. To the life others continue living during our physical or emotional absence. To the life we left on hold.

There are no rainbows and unicorns in infertility. No time for fun or relaxation during a war. For parties or thrills or belly laughter. For “thriving”. Sure, you can sometimes kick back momentarily, but your mind rarely disengages from the war at hand. And there is nothing wrong with that, so don’t feel guilty when you don’t want to participate in something others think is fun. When in doubt, sit it out. Like “friendly-fire”, well-meaning allies can unintentionally cause you great pain. Baby shower invites are grenades thrown by friends.

Let’s first acknowledge that the only people qualified to give advice to infertile people are other infertile people. Not your mom or your best friend. Not even your doctor, beyond the medical part. And certainly not your hairdresser’s second cousin’s babysitter. No one else knows what you’re going through…no matter how much they love you.

credit: Resolve

Even those who suffered their own fertility challenges and emerged triumphant can’t fully understand the pain felt by those still waiting for their day. Yes, they walked a mile…maybe ten… in your stirrups. But the filling of previously empty arms changes you. Becoming a parent changes you, even if you still want more children. Your advice may not be as welcome as before.

So here is my not-as-welcome-as before advice: I can tell you to treat yourself well, not because you will enjoy it so much as because it’s one of the few things about infertility that is in your control. Eat well, sleep enough, and exercise because doing so can improve your chances of conceiving. Occasionally, do your favorite pampering-type things if you have the time and money to help with stress relief and feelings of deprivation. If you’re not feeling the romantic walk on the beach thing, do it anyway. Or do something that feels right to reconnect with your partner if the battle is taking its toll on you as a couple. He or she is the only person who is worth that herculean effort.

Control what you can. Ask for help if you need it. Believe it will happen.

Because winning this war isn’t everything. It’s the only thing.

For more information about how you can resolve to learn more about infertility, please go to:

http://www.resolve.org/infertility101  (Basic understanding of the disease of infertility.)

http://www.resolve.org/national-infertility-awareness-week/about.html (About NIAW)

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Does infertility sometimes feel like your own private war? Do you have any tips to share that have helped you?

 

Photo credit: Ambro http://bit.ly/1ffg5MV

 

 

 

 

 

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Don’t Ignore Infertility Support Available

By Tracey Minella

April 24th, 2012 at 11:10 pm

 

There’s something wrong with me. I see infertile people.

As an infertility blogger and an IVF mom, my mission is to support the women still on their fertility journeys. To listen to them and, when the time is right, to share my own stories to give them strength to go on…or to let go.

And to remind them that their infertility journeys will come to an end. Someday. It may be the day a baby is born or adopted, or with an eventual decision to live child-free. But someday, all this stuff…the charting, injections, inseminations, blood work, retrievals, transfers, miscarriages, stillbirths, and two week waits…all the stuff that now makes up every moment of every day… will end. “Really”, I tell them. “Trust me”…

But I lied.

True, the infertility journey will end. But the infertility itself never goes away.

Most people don’t know that.

After six years… three IUIs, six fresh IVFs, a twin loss, OHSS, ovarian torsion, and countless other obstacles to happiness, then a seventh IVF, for two problematic, bed-rest, preterm labor, gestational diabetic pregnancies which each delivered 6 weeks early…I was sure I’d put infertility behind me. Shop’s closed. Time to let that little smokin’ piece of charcoal I call “my remaining ovary” rest in peace.

But infertility remains.

It’s like in those movies where people see dead people. Except I see infertile people.

It’s there in the faces of young married couples who have the careers, the houses, and the “fur babies”, but have no obvious reason not to have had children yet. The woman awkwardly avoids eye contact when someone unknowingly brings up children. Those of us who’ve been there see it. It is blindingly obvious—like infertile radar.

It’s there in our faces, too. It’s in the little nagging worries about whether the countless vials of injectable medications are going to come back to bite us some day, some way. Or in the resentment we feel about having children later…possibly a decade later…than fertile folks did– and the fear of having less energy to parent them the way they deserve, or of living long enough to see them settled.

I’ve seen division in the infertility world. Among the childless, you have the rookies and the veterans defined by the number of failed IVF cycles they’ve endured. Then you have the secondary infertility patients, often claiming to be resented by the childless for being “greedy” enough to come back for another child. Finally, you have the newly pregnant or newborn success stories– the envy of all. Harsh, but often true. The world can be ugly, and the infertile world is no exception. Self preservation prevails.

When a patient passes into the success story group, something wonderful happens to them. But something sad happens, too. They get the boot. Like some kind of graduation rite, the new moms get ejected from the ranks of the infertile. Their infertile former friends think they’re different now. They think they’re just like all the other fertile folks.

You have a baby now. You no longer understand us.

Are you reading this and saying “So what? Bring it on. Just let me get pregnant and kick me out! I can’t wait until infertility is over!”

It’s not so easy to be a woman without a country. You don’t fit in with your old infertile friends who are still trying to conceive, but you also don’t fit in with the fertile people who, by their words and actions, often take the ease with which they conceived for granted.

Enter one of the best kept secrets of the infertility world… the survivor’s guilt.

Infertility will always be part of you. Sorry. Even as you push your child on a park swing, you’ll be acutely aware of the sad, detached woman on the bench. You’ll always remember the date of your long-awaited positive pregnancy test and will often think of the waiting room and the people still waiting there. You may find you are far too overprotective of the child you worked so hard to have. That infertile radar is always on.  And your heart will hurt for those still struggling…even if they’ve forgotten you.

I blog about infertility for the doctors who didn’t give up on me when I wasn’t an easy case, or an easy patient, or truth be told, much help to their success stats. I blog for the doctors who built my family. For today’s patients and the patients yet to come. Some of the drug names have changed, but the stories are all relevant and the support is heartfelt.  It didn’t feel right to just turn my back and go on with my life after my journey ended.

Sadly, many IF bloggers gravitate only to blogs by women currently on their journeys. Of course, they are wonderful sources of support. But to overlook the value of informative commercial blogs or blogs by those whose journeys have ended is to overlook another source of support. (And you may just miss an opportunity to win a free Micro-IVF cycle, too.)

Don’t ignore the infertility support that is available from those who’ve walked a mile in your stirrups. Don’t shun us because you think we don’t understand you anymore. Don’t lump us in with the fertile people just because our journey has ended. Take advantage of the fact that we want to focus only on you.

We are here to help and support you. We will never forget. Don’t ignore us.

http://www.resolve.org/infertility101

http://www.resolve.org/national-infertility-awareness-week/about.html

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This year’s National Infertility Awareness Week theme is “Don’t Ignore Infertility…” How have you or others ignored it?

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There’s Something BIG Coming Next Week…

By Tracey Minella

April 19th, 2012 at 9:19 pm

If you’re here for the podcast, waiting with baited breath to hear Dr. Kreiner’s fifth and latest chapter of his book, Journey to the Crib, you’ll have to check back tomorrow…sorry! But it’ll be worth the wait. I promise.

And speaking of things that are worth the wait…

We’ve got something HUGE planned for National Infertility Awareness Week next week.

You are not going to want to miss it, so be sure to check in here next week at The Fertility Daily. But it’d be mean of me not to at least hint about what’s coming. So, here’s the hint: It’s a contest. Its grand prize, worth almost $4,000.00, could be a life-changing dream come true.

That’s all I’m saying for now.

And to those of you checking in for April’s ICLW…WELCOME!!

So glad you stopped by and hope you like it here and come back often. We’ve got a mix of doctor and patient posts. You’ll find patient perspective pieces from me, a veteran IVF mom, with “battle scars” and stories to share. As they say, no one can understand what you’re going through unless they’ve walked a mile in your shoes. (Of course I’m paraphrasing.) Well, I’ve walked a thousand miles in them. In fact, I’ve worn them out. I’ve even crawled a few hundred miles. So I “get it”. If you comment, I will follow you back.

We’re here to make you laugh with our weekly Wednesday photo caption contests, to cry with you, to help guide you with tips and new information, wherever you are on your infertility journey. You’ll also have access to our doctors’ informative posts on the latest medical fertility news. Feel free to ask them your questions! Check out Dr. Kreiner’s weekly podcasts on Thursdays. Want to read a post on a certain topic? Just tell us and we’ll deliver. We also post links to our blog on the Long Island IVF Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/longislandivf

So, mark those calendars to check back next week when we celebrate National Infertility Awareness Week with the kick-off of an amazing contest!

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Anyone have any suggestions for the smaller prizes/gift cards we’ll be giving away in addition to the big mystery Grand Prize? (And, no, Paris is not an option…)

photo credit: http://www.wpclipart.com/cartoon/assorted/xtra_cartoons/telling_a_secret.jpg

 

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