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It’s only natural to want to say something that will comfort us infertiles upon first hearing our stories. Don’t bother. No, really. There is absolutely nothing you can say. But, I can imagine how you must feel. No, you can’t. Well, in God’s time then, dear—or my favorite—it’s God’s plan. Really? So, I wonder what he was thinking when the welfare-dependent crack whore got knocked up by her John again? Good timing?

Don’t worry. You’re still young.

Thank you. But, I’m not. You see, a woman is most fertile in her early- to mid-twenties, at which time the average healthy couple has about a 25% chance of getting pregnant each ovulatory cycle. In her thirties, that same couple’s chances drop to 15%. Meanwhile, as the decade progresses, the risk factors continue to increase. We’ve been trying for four years without a single BFP. The deck is already stacked.

You’re trying too hard. Just relax. Go on a vacation.

Absolutely. You first, though, when you are the one who is reaching that magical age when the average woman’s fertility plummets to unreasonable depths. (Then, of course, there is the whole issue of having no vacation time left. I had to use it all up for doctor’s appointments and procedures.) No thank you. I’d rather be proactive while I still can.

As soon as I started exercising and dieting, I got pregnant…

How nice for you. Huh, that never occurred to me as I stood bent over my bathroom vanity in tears while my husband plunged a 3-inch needle into my hip to trigger my ovulation. I’ll keep that in mind.

Have you considered adoption?

Yes, yes, we have. You may call me selfish, but I am still hopeful I will get to feel that life inside me growing and what it means to be a biological mother. Until that is absolutely no longer an option, though, I will put adoption on the back burner. (Because it is a whole other costly adventure in itself.)

What can you say? Be honest. Nothing. Give us a hug, a shoulder to cry on. Ask us questions when you don’t understand something. Just be there. Be patient. Accept the fact that you can’t possibly understand and we don’t expect you to.