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Infertility Support, Love & Friendship – The Antidote to Isolation Blog Feature
Lisa Rosenthal

By: Lisa Rosenthal on March 17th, 2016

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Infertility Support, Love & Friendship – The Antidote to Isolation


Infertility SupportWhat do you do when you need some help and friends who have not experienced infertility or fertility treatment just don’t quite get it? (As much as we love our fertile friends, sometimes, we just need our people who GET IT.)

If you are a RMACT (Reproductive Medicine Associates of Connecticut) patient, or former patient, you go to Ladies Night In Online– a secret, hidden Facebook page. No decoder ring needed or even special password. Just let me know that you would like to be invited and I will make it happen.

Infertility Support – Love & Friendship Online

Here’s a taste of the conversations that take place on our page. At any given time, even the middle of the night, conversations are taking place. This one particularly moved me.

Why wouldn’t it?

Compassion. Helpful comments. Support. Sharing of personal experiences. Acceptance. Pretty much what we all hope for when we are looking for help. Names are changed, certain details are changed. Otherwise, I changed very little.These are real people, taking the time to add to each other’s lives. And of course, I have permission from each of them to share this here, with you. ~ Lisa Rosenthal

Back to Back IVF Cycles? | Support & Encouragement

Hey ladies.. Need a little advice/support/just listen to me vent? Lol. Have any of you done back to back IVF cycles? We did our first one last month & it wasn't successful. I was so ready when we started. Very motivated & for the most part everything prior to the retrieval was surprisingly manageable. I wouldn't say easy but manageable lol. My emotions were in check; I was thinking clearly & was very organized. After the retrieval, I was an absolutely basket case. (Thank you to a few of you wonderful ladies who "held my hand" through that stressful weekend!) I cried my face off for two days after the news that the embryos didn't survive but then on that third day and ever since then, I've been completely emotionless. I'm not crying, I'm not angry, I'm not anything. I just feel exhausted. Physically, emotionally & mentally exhausted. I've even been sleeping a lot more over the last 2 weeks. So I'm supposed to start a longer IVF cycle with Estrace at the end of this week and I'm not feeling excited about it. Not like the first time. I am just going through the motions I guess. Does it sound like I'm not in a good place to start a new cycle? I don't know how I should be feeling. I don't want to lose any more time but I don't want to do this all again if I'm feeling this way.


I think this is different for everyone. It definitely is an up/down roller coaster and each cycle was different for me. Do you have a 'support' system to talk too (besides us)? Do you go toLadies Night In? Or see a therapist? Perhaps those outlets can help you shed some thoughts/emotions on this whole process. I have found that Ladies Night In has been a great avenue for me. No matter what you choose, I am sure you will make the right decision for you. Wishing you all the best! ***Big Hugs***



I have a great support system but no one else that's going through this other than LNI Online.. I can never make the meetings because I work nights.



If you need a break, there's nothing wrong with taking even just a month off to recharge. I think it's important to feel optimistic and excited about the possibilities that could come out of a new cycle. You know I'm here for you if you need to talk!



Yeah I'm thinking that if I'm second guessing it, maybe that means I need a break. Ugh.



Hi, I think you are saying can it work when you're just not as excited? 

If so, I don't want to bore you with my story, but the time I protected my heart and only had a dim light of hope is the time that took for me. I hope I don't upset anyone for sharing that. Hugs to you and best wishes!



Not at all.. That's kind of what I am looking for. Maybe it's better to go into it when I'm not as excited/emotional because I won't get let down as much if it fails? Maybe my mind and my heart are protecting me right now..I love hearing success stories, it makes me hopeful!



It is so hard not to be physically, emotionally, mentally drained after a failed cycle...near impossible. And it's so easy to just stay on that ride cycle after cycle. A break can restart you emotionally and also "detox" you. I hate losing time too, so I get it, and there is something to be said for a fresh mind and body. There is no right or wrong, here though!



I totally get what you are saying because as much as you feel like you need a break you want to just move forward and not "lose time"... For me, I needed a break. Dr.Leondires kind of suggested it and I was a little sad about it at first and it ended up being the best thing. For about two months I didn't have to worry about all of the things that go along with each cycle and I got my spirits back up with the hope that it would all work out. I would say if you're feeling defeated maybe take a short break...I also felt like acupuncture helped me a lot. I did about 5-6 sessions with Jing once I got my protocol and it felt so calming. If you're really unsure maybe talk to your nurse/doc and see what they suggest. You come first.  Good luck to you and I hope it all works out.



 Thank you! Yes I've been doing acupuncture 2-3x a week since August.. That's part of the exhaustion though. Driving to Greenwich for that and up super early before 14 hour work shifts for monitoring.. Packing and organizing meds for those shifts and setting alarms. Yeah the thought of jumping right back into that doesn't feel good.. Might need to take a month or 2 off. I'll see.. Thank you!



I did back to back cycles, and skipped a month. In all honesty, each time I did back to backs (twice) I ended up with one frozen embryo. Each time I skipped a month, I didn't even make it to retrieval. I know everyone's different, but I do think there's something to "not having high hopes." When I took that pressure off myself, even unintentionally, that's when I had most success. I agree that there's no right or wrong - follow the path that gives you the most relief or adds the least anxiety. Sending you lots of love and hugs.



That's the way I see it... No high hopes yet still there is hope.



Yeah.. It almost might be easier to go in without expectations. Just go through the motions, take the meds and see what happens. Sounds appealing but I don't want to do it the "wrong way".. Maybe I just need a glass or two of wine and go to bed and stop thinking tonight lol!



If you figure out how to stop thinking, please share the wealth!



Go see Lisa Schuman or Melissa Kelleher - the social workers - or another mental health professional (counselor). Numb, going through the motions, exhausted, sleeping more, 100% what I've experienced so I'm going to make myself feel better and call it normal. Personally, I don't think that because you feel that way should determine whether or not you are ready for another cycle, but I do think it indicates you need to take care of your mental well being. Maybe you can do so while doing an IVF cycle, maybe not. Only you can know the answer to that (and I'm impressed if you do b/c I certainly don't!). Most importantly, take care of yourself or as Lisa Rosenthal says, "be gentle to yourself." To answer your original question, yes, we did do back to back cycles. Talk to your doctor/nurse and find out if there's any science indicating back to back results in better results.


I really appreciate everyone's feedback here.. I am taking it to heart. Honestly, hearing from those who've gone through it/ are in the same situation as me, seems genuine to me and exactly what I was looking for when I originally posted. I might need to slow down and take a month at a time.Thank you to all of you for being here for me and with me.


About Lisa Rosenthal

Lisa has over thirty years of experience in the fertility field. After her personal infertility journey, she felt dissatisfied with the lack of comprehensive services available to support her. She was determined to help others undergoing fertility treatment. Lisa has been with RMACT for eleven years and serves as Patient Advocate and the Strategic Content Lead.

Lisa is the teacher and founder of Fertile Yoga, a program designed to support men and women on their quest for their families through gentle movement and meditation.

Lisa’s true passion is supporting patients getting into treatment, being able to stay in treatment and staying whole and complete throughout the process. Lisa is also a Certified Grief Recovery Specialist, which is helpful in her work with fertility patients.

Her experience also includes working with RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association and The American Fertility Association (now Path2Parenthood), where she was Educational Coordinator, Conference Director and Assistant Executive Director.