Job Stress Meets Infertility Stress

I have a lot of fears and anxieties about being unemployed, and I can only trace these to my father screaming at me every few days to find a job (with no car) every summer between college years, after threatening to kick me out of the house when I turned 18 if I didn’t find a job (with no car) and start paying for myself.

When I finished school (with a 4.0 gpa!), I wanted to go to graduate school, but without a job or place to live, I had too much anxiety to not find a job right away and maybe go to grad school later (hah). Eventually that lead to my current job.

I have great job security, and I mean really great. It pays well. My boss is flexible and very understanding of me taking time during work hours for doctor’s appointments. Sounds like a dream, right? Oh, and the best part is the health insurance. I don’t even talk about the health insurance because it sounds like bragging and I know when to just shut up and be grateful.

Basically, what they don’t cover is PGS, ICSI, embryo storage, or FETs. A retrieval is counted as a cycle, and I get four of them covered. Meds are covered, too. It’s more than most people have and being grateful for that is what curbs my doom and gloom over having <.03 AMH. I’d rather be fertile and have no fertility coverage, but hey! I count my blessings every day. For what it’s worth, I do live in a mandated coverage state, but my employer has self-funded insurance, so the rules don’t apply to them. Meaning, they are not required to provide this coverage, and yet they actually go above and beyond what the state requires for fertility coverage, which is wonderful and progressive.

What my job does lack is opportunity for growth, fulfillment, accomplishment, or recognition. It’s complicated to describe. I am not outright disrespected, but I don’t feel important, appreciated, or valued. It’s clear that some people think even think I am less intelligent or educated than I am, and that’s because they jump to conclusions about my bottom rung job that is classified as administrative but actually goes way beyond that into logistics and operations. It doesn’t help that I am nearly 35 but look like I’m 28 to people 40+.

Last night at work I kind of snapped. Things have been building up. My boss’ boss has been really pompous lately, and my boss seems to think I am a complete rube sometimes (after five years) and I haven’t felt like this in a long time but I almost cried right there at my desk. Just total frustration and overwhelming amounts of work getting dumped on me with deadlines. Being left out of important announcements that pertain to my job because I am not management. Being scolded for not putting together a spreadsheet of options for a manager because I spent the last week working late to meet fiscal year end deadlines.

I texted a co-worker friend of mine last night that I felt like Dobby.


I stayed late last night working on that spreadsheet and when I got home, I put on Vegas Baby on Netflix to watch with my husband. In the beginning a woman is lying on a stretcher, telling the filmmaker she’s paid a total of 200k to have a baby. She’s in tears and she says that it will all be okay, some day.

And I turned to my husband and said, “And that is why I put up with so much at work!”


The documentary was great, by the way. It didn’t have an exactly happy ending and it was really honest about pain of infertility without making it seem like “IVF, then poof! Baby!”, which is a sentiment I really appreciate. I had finished HuffPost’s IVFML podcast yesterday morning which was a tiny bit of the IVF, Poof, Baby!, even though I’m sure that’s not how the actual experience felt for that couple. I spent the day feeling sad and strained, with the deep aching and yearning to have a baby that most days is just an abstract desire to be fulfilled in the distant future. It’s like the way you envision being famous as a kid. You don’t think it will happen but it’s too distant to be able to say it is definitely impossible so you get to pretend it’s going to happen as long as you believe it.


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