Chapter Twenty Eight: Relax! It’s Just a Scratch…

The endometrial scratch I had a few days ago was quite a bit worse than last time but maybe that’s a good thing. I had a different doctor this time and she really scraped me up. Hopefully that translates to a super awesome endometrial lining next month. 

While she was shoving a catheter into my uterus I asked her (you know… it seemed like a good time) about some naturopathic treatments: acupuncture and arvigo massage. I had been wanting to ask for a while now but the doctors are always rushing around everywhere and it’s hard to get a word in edgewise. The first answer I got was the answer I had reached from my own research. There has been no data or studies to support that they help in the treatment of infertility. Her answer was actually about a paragraph of very carefully worded sentences that had obviously been practiced. 

However, upon further discussion, she advised that it could be helpful if you found it relaxing. If the thought of lying naked in a dark room with a bunch of needles was stressful (sounds plausible, right?) then she thought that it might be harmful. I don’t think I really fit into either category nor do I want to promote or perpetuate pseudoscience. I feel that lots of infertile women are taken advantage of financially and emotionally because are willing to try anything that’s advertised to help bring them a healthy baby. If the only benefit is it’s relaxation effects, I can think of better ways to de-stress with my money. Something the doctor did recommend was practicing mindfulness. Apparently there has been a study on using mindfulness as a relaxation tool and that a study had discovered a small positive correlation for chronic illnesses outcomes. So I have downloaded the free mindfulness app and will be using it for my next cycles instead. 

I would like to stress (ha ha) that feeling stress does not CAUSE infertility and relaxing does not cure it. This is a widespread myth that promotes self blame and, ironically, even more added stress to infertile couples. Infertility is a medical disease/disorder to which healthy coping mechanisms are beneficial just like in any other (cancer, diabetes, heart disease etc). You can’t relax away any of those medical problems. It slightly helps improve outcomes, and the same goes for infertility. As you may have guessed, the ‘stress causes infertility’ myth frustrates and angers me, which is why I addressed it today in my blog. I see many of my infertile friends struggle with advice to relax given to them by friends and family who are very well-meaning but sadly misinformed. Infertility has been taboo for so long that myths are rampant. It’s time for truth and support. Thank you to everyone following my journey who is committed to learning along with me and who have given  me and my hubby so much support. 

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17 thoughts on “Chapter Twenty Eight: Relax! It’s Just a Scratch…

  1. Great post!
    There are so many myths about what does and does not ‘cure’ infertility!
    I mostly just role my eyes when I read something that says relaxing more will help fertility! Oh yeah! I should have known I’m just not relaxing enough that’s why I haven’t conceived! 😑
    Sorry! Rant over.
    Totally agree. It’s time people understand and seperate the truth from myth. Your doing a great job sharing your story!! πŸ’œ

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  2. I did acupuncture my first round and it was my worst round. Some people swear by it but I haven’t done it since – hated it. I ended up getting head and shoulder massages (getting one today) as I just find it lovely and relaxing so that’s all that matters.
    You’re so right though – lots of charlatans out there. Just do whatever takes your fancy. And sorry about your painful scratch. Hope it does the trick though! πŸ™Œ

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  3. oh yeah I tried acupuncture several times and didn’t like it! It just wasn’t for me. At best it felt as relaxing as if I was just lying down taking a nap for 20 minutes which I could have done at home! So for me I didn’t think it could be helpful for fertility but I know some people love it. I also tried fertility massage and I enjoyed that more. Was a lot more relaxing even if it didn’t unblock my tubes as I’d been hoping!

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  4. I really do believe that there may be something to acupuncture which is why I am trying it, but I also think it is more valuable to not do things you don’t want to do when it comes to all things unproven. There are some visualization and journaling techniques I was trying to do for a while that I hated so much it was was making me extremely angry to do it. I feel like we’re all so desperate and blame ourselves too often we didn’t do all the right things that may or may not be hocus pocus. Like really? Pineapple core? I think it’s pointless, but I know I’ll be buying one.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I hear you. I get it. I decided not to go for basically the same reason you stoped visualization and journalling. I know it will make me angry which is a type of stress and not going to benefit me. If you think acupuncture is helping you then that’s wonderful! I am guilty of eating pineapple too even though it’s completely unproven. A sprinkle of magic… for 4$? Couldn’t hurt right? Plus it tastes great. We need to stop blaming ourselves when cycles fail. We are all trying the best we can to get through it. All the power to you for trying it out. I have no judgement towards you.

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      1. Oh for sure. I’m actually considering stopping acupuncture because it’s beginning to piss me off so your post is good timing for me haha.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Ha ha ok then. Glad it was just the post for you! I like the free app for mindfulness so far. They are only about 3-5 minutes long and you do one per day. I’m still on the beginner training sessions. Day 4 today. πŸ˜€

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  5. Strange how infertility makes us take the path we have never taken or even thought of. Though some doctors do believe in mindfulness and relaxation can help. I will attach one article by a doctor I read sometime back if I find it again.

    I pray for both of us that our ovaries produce eggs despite of POI πŸ’†πŸ˜Š

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