Post # 1
I know this is probably a question for my doctor, but I’ve recently been thinking about preserving my fertility and wanted to get the bees’ thoughts.
I’m 34. My husband and I have been TTC for about 4 months. We both want a large family (4-6 kids). We can afford IVF. Would it make sense to go there right off the bat vs. continuing to try naturally? I was thinking we could do a few retrieval cycles and freeze some embryos, because if it’s this hard to get pregnant now, I can’t imagine it will be any easier as I get older. Even 4 kids seems unrealistic starting at 34. Shouldn’t I put all that money I spent my younger fertile years making to good use and preserve my fertility while I still can?
Post # 2
I really wouldn’t jump the gun on IVF if you don’t have to.
Have you and your husband done any testing yet? Start from there, that’s probably your best thing to do if you want to be proactive.
Although it seems long, 4 months of TTC isn’t really a big deal.
Post # 3
- Wedding: June 2015 - Backyard
4 months is literally nothing. However, I have read that going in for testing is not a terrible idea if you have been actually timing BD perfectly (with temping and/or OPKs) for 6 months with no luck. You could always seek an RE referral at that time at least to discuss freezing and testing since you want such a large family. Best of luck!
Post # 4
IVF is pretty terrible as far as the hormones and injections you have to take, egg retrievals etc. It’s not something I’d jump to immediately.
4 months is really not that long at all. It can take a perfectly normal couple around a year to conceive. Are you using OPKs/temping?
I think you and your husband need to be honest with yourselves about your possible family size though. Back to back pregnancies are extremely hard on your body, and not everyone can even get pregnant again right away. My period didn’t come back for a year. And iirc it’s recommended to wait 18 months between births if you have a c-section.
Maybe considered adoption to increase your family size? I mean a lot of people say they want a bushel of kids until they actually have a few and change their minds too…
Post # 5
I agree with a lot of this.
With how much it will take to do IVF and prepare for it, it’s very possible you will get pregnant naturally during that time.
Post # 6
I know four months is nothing and chances are (assuming no issues) we will get pregnant naturially in the next few months anyway. My concern is not this pregnancy so much as the potential for having a large family. That has been a dream of mine (and my husband’s) for as long as I can remember. I know, I should have started sooner, but I didn’t have the right partner till now. I wonder if looking into doing retrievals while I’m still young-ish will give us some time back to have the large family we want.
I also realize I might completely change my mind about how many kids I want after having just one.
Post # 7
4 months is nothing. Overall, 80% of couples will get pregnant within a year of trying – it is likely that you are in that 80%. You say that its ‘this hard’ already, but you have barely given yourself a chance to get pregnant. There is a 15-20% chance every cycle of getting pregnant naturally, so you might get pregnant this cycle or the next cycle. Give yourself some time.
I’m speaking as someone who needs IVF to get pregnant – it is a big deal. It’s a lot of money, time, and most importantly, you are putting your body through a lot. The drugs can have insane side effects, and the whole process is SO invasive. There is also a huge emotional aspect, and it can be traumatic.
I would look at IVF as an absolute last resort.
Post # 8
We have been timing intercourses perfectly and we do plan to go in for testing at the 6-month mark if not sooner. Besides my age my husband also has a condition that can cause infertility, so we want to get that checked out before we spend too much time.
Post # 9
I was with the other bees until your follow-up that mentioned your husband’s condition. You might want to at least get him tested to see if MFI is an issue or not.
Otherwise, my OB-GYN recommends women in their 30s come in after 6 months of actively trying, just in case.
Post # 10
you could think about freezing some eggs right now and then keep ttc naturally? And yeah I would do a sperm assessment on your husband ASAP if he has a condition that may cause infertility.
Post # 11
That’s what I want to do- except go straight to freezing embryos because it’s cheaper than eggs and has a higher rate of success. I would obviously prefer to try to conceive naturally but it’s the future fertility I’m worried about.
Agreed we need to get my husband tested ASAP…
Post # 12
Please understand IVF is in no way a short cut or an easy way to “jump ahead” in your efforts to create the family you imagine. It is taxing financially, emotionally, physically, and often puts a strain on even the strongest marriages. There is a reason doctors recommend medicated cycles and IUI prior to IVF. As op said- this should be your last option. Are you wanting to to jump to IVF in hopes of achieving multiples? Just an FYI- most practices now will only transfer one embryo per cycle- studies now show that transferring multiple embryos only increases chances of both a singleton and multiples marginally, but increases risk to maternal and fetal health exponentially. Even with IVF, there is no guarantee in the number of embryos you will have to freeze, if the embryos will survive thaw, or if they will stick.
Now, there is is nothing wrong with your husband starting testing with a urologist- running a sperm analysis is very quick and simple. You can also have hormone panels run on yourself at your OBGYN. Are you temping and using OPKs? Taking prenatals, eating a healthy, fertility based diet? Getting regular exercise? There are ways to be proactive with your fertility without jumping right to IVF.
I agree with PP- you need to take a step back, start to realistically look at your expectations.
Post # 13
Sorry, i think my OP wording was confusing. I don’t necessarily want to jump straight to IVF for this particular pregnancy. I am just wondering about the possibility of freezing some embryos for the future, since we want a large family and I am getting up in age. My understanding is that the process of freezing embryos is the first (and most expensive and painful) part of IVf.
I am fine with waiting longer for this pregnancy, and certainly not interested in multiple births. It’s just the future pregnancies when I am in my late 30s and beyond I am worried about. If I will need to do IVF to achieve the large family I want later on anyway, it seems practical to do the freeze part now while my eggs are healthier.
Just trying to get a feel for whether this approach is a reasonable possibility to discuss with my doctor. The consensus seems to be no, but many women are encouraged to freeze eggs and I’m not sure I see the difference. Freezing eggs is just as painful, more expensive, and associated with a lower success rate.
And yes, I’m doing all the crap to get pregnant- prenatals, opks, healthy diet, fertility yoga, the works. I don’t temp but that’s only because my cycle is like clockwork and ovulation is physically painful for me so I can confirm when it happens. I know 4 months is not a long time but there is also a good chance of MFI.
) pmrs2b70 :
Post # 14
mrs2b70 : Yep. Everything you said.
Post # 15
As someone who has done 3 retrievals and is only now gearing up for a transfer, there are no guarantees with IVF and it is in no way a short cut. IVF may take longer for you than just getting pregnant naturally. Not every woman responds to the stims so it may take you multiple retrievals to get any embryos. We started infertility treatment because my dh had MFI. It wasn’t until my first round of IVF stims that we discovered I am a poor responder. So it then took multiple IVF rounds to achieve any embryos. IVF is not a sure thing. It can expose other issues that you don’t even know about yet. I think for first steps, get your husband tested (SA, urologist examination) then have your levels checked and get an HSG to check for blockage. Then take it from there.