How to find the humor in infertility

Mortifying at first, laughing at infertility can be extremely helpful!

Tonya Wertman laughing

You know you’re in the midst of infertility when you know the difference between a 22 1/2-gauge and 27-gauge needle and can explain it to the idiot working behind the pharmacy counter.

You know you’re in the midst of infertility when your shopping list contains both ovulation prediction kits and tampons.

Ella Wheeler Wilcox said, “Laugh and the world laughs with you — weep, and you weep alone.” I firmly believe this, especially when it comes to infertility. Any momentary escape from the pain and isolation of this battle is more than welcomed!

Laughing at infertility

Laughter is one of the best ways I have of coping with my infertility (wine and exercise are close behind). It’s an incredibly frustrating journey, and there are enough tears for both my husband and myself, but there is also laughter. There has to be, or else it would be too damn depressing. If you can’t laugh at infertility, you’ll cry.

One of my daily must-visit websites is 999 Reasons to Laugh at Infertility, a very funny blog dedicated to exposing the humor in infertility. If you need a good laugh, it’s a great place to start!

Funny moments

When I asked members of the various infertility support groups I belong to if they would share their favorite funny infertile moments with me, I got plenty of giggle-worthy material.

Teresa P. responded with, “You mean like the time I injected myself with air instead of my hCG trigger shot?”

Jeanette K. was quick to add, “Or the time, my RE [reproductive endocrinologist] said, ‘Jeanette, I think you are depressed and might consider getting some meds,’ and I stood up, leaned over his desk and pointed at him and loudly said, ‘You’ve seen my vagina more than you’ve seen my face. You don’t get to say that to me!'”

Jeanette also included an embarrassing, yet very funny moment when she accidently called her RE, “Dad” and she disclosed that “no one can ever find my right ovary so there is a map in my file about its location. You haven’t lived until there is a pirate’s map of your junk floating around.”

Cynthia H. said, “On my 45th birthday, I had an egg retrieval. The doctor, two nurses and the embryologist all sang ‘Happy Birthday’ to me while I was strapped in and completely exposed. I was embarrassed, but cracking up.”

I recently overheard a fellow patient in my RE’s waiting room on the phone (referring to her ultrasound appointment to count follicles) say, “I have a date with an ultrasound machine, and I know I’m getting lucky!” She quickly apologized to the room, but I thought it was hysterical.

Laughter and stress relief

Laughter is a powerful antidote to stress and pain, and nothing works faster to bring your mind and body back into balance than a good laugh. Humor helps lighten your burdens, inspire hope, connect you to others and best of all — keeps you grounded.

Everyone is different, and I would never joke about anyone’s infertility except my own. It’s hard to make jokes about serious topics, but sometimes laughter is all you have and finding a little humor in something so exhausting and stressful can never be a bad thing.

One last funny — you know you are trying to get pregnant when someone asks you today’s date and you reply, “Day 21.”

Image credit: Stephanie Ann Photography

More about infertility

How infertility is impacting my child
How I coped with bed rest after IVF
Staying grateful while facing infertility


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