When Liz and her wife Carrie started making plans to grow their family they already knew they would face many obstacles. What they did not expect, was enduring many years of failed fertility treatments and a miscarriage before they were even considered for additional diagnostic testing that would have been more commonly recommended to a heterosexual couple seeking treatment. They felt that experiencing infertility as a same sex couple, added on a few extra layers of emotional grief, with little access to support resources like donor counseling and inclusion of resources otherwise given to heterosexual couples.
“There were a lot of ups and downs for us, and some very dark moments along the way. We would often find ourselves asking ‘why is everything so hard?’ We’ve had to overcome so many hurdles to come out of the closet, or find a job that won’t fire us for being gay, or just to get married. And then we finally achieve those things and think it’s finally smooth sailing. But here’s infertility knocking. In moments like those it’s hard not to wonder if anything will ever come easily.” – Liz H.
They wanted validation of their infertility struggle as patients and not to have their standard of care overlooked because they were gay. Infertility is already devastating for any couple to endure. Adding in the challenges regarding access to care and barriers to family building options leave many same-sex couples feeling isolated and alone in their infertility journey.
This couple and their story does have a happy ending. Despite the massive mountain that stood steadfast in their way of becoming parents, Carrie and her wife Liz are new parents of twins.
Infertility can happen to all couples. That is why Liz and Carrie are asking people to Listen Up! to help educate the public, professionals and other LGBTQ couples about the barriers they faced when meet with the tumultuous task of the simple dream of becoming parents.