Unbearable: So There’s A Fertility Diet? Count Me Out

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Having a child is usually a happy time in a woman’s life. Unfortunately, as we wait longer to have children, infertility and trouble conceiving can become a part of the family making process. Unbearable addresses these difficulties.

I’m not being completely fair. I haven’t researched the fertility diet. I haven’t talked to the author of the fertility diet. (I’m going to do that soon and you’ll all get to see how it goes.) But I’ve been gifted a copy of, “Yes, You Can Get Pregnant: The Diet That Will Improve Your Fertility Now & Into Your 40’s,” and I simply can’t bring myself to flip through it. Every time I look at this little book, written by Aimee Raupp, a small shiver runs through my spine. So I decided to write down my pre-reading thoughts for you all.

I hate the idea of looking at desperate and depressed women who would do anything to conceive and saying, “If you do just one more thing, if you make one more sacrifice or try one more method, you’ll finally get the baby you’ve been dreaming about.”

I realize that the book is meant to help people. I’m sure that Raupp has reasons for suggesting you follow a diet to help get pregnant. In general, it makes sense that the healthier you are, the easier it is to conceive. Rationally, I can understand the existence of such a book. I can even see how some would find it helpful.

Then I think about all the things I’ve tried. I think about the procedures, the medicines, the natural supplements. I go through those in my head, and remember the feeling of failure every time they didn’t produce any results. At some point, all these new possibilities begin to feel like one more thing you can fail at. And since my body is already failing at its basic biological task, it’s frustrating to think that I’m additionally failing at whatever tip or trick I’m trying lately.

The opposite end of simply finding another thing to fail at, these little “Get Rich Quick” too-good-to-be-true formulas provide another false sense of hope. They give struggling women another goal, but reaching it feels hollow. Sure, I can suffer through three months of stomach cramping, but when the fertility supplements don’t work, that’s another hope dashed. Sure, I could eat raw vegetables and lean meat for six months, but if it doesn’t work out I’m just going to be really resentful of all the french fries I missed.

I realize, I’m attributing a lot of things to a small book that’s just trying to help people have babies. But it’s bee laughing at me from my night table for a week now. I haven’t been able to pick up it. I feel like something about that dangling carrot is just too much for me to take. It says, “If you do this one last thing, you’ll finally get there.” It also says, “If you just would’ve done this one thing, you wouldn’t have spent years unsuccessfully trying.”

That’s what it comes down to, right? If this is the answer, if my diet was keeping my from conceiving, than I’ve spent years or stress and heartache that are all my own fault. That’s a scary idea to come to grips with. And it’s one that I’m not sure I would be able to avoid if this little diet actually worked.

(Photo: Aaron Amat/Shutterstock)