Home > You > A Real Mum’s Experience of Secondary Infertility

“Will you have another? The unrelenting question I’ve been plagued with for most of my late thirties.”

Author: Danielle Fox-Thomas

“At a recent toddler birthday party, another parent commented on how confident my son was and how well he played with the other children. “He’s so kind to the little babies, she exclaimed, quickly followed by ‘are you going to try for another one?”
Well intentioned I’m sure, but to someone who just had, a week prior, another failed embryo transfer, it hit me hard. My reply, one that I’ve honed over years of infertility and in answer to many probing questions was, “unfortunately we can’t conceive naturally but we’re hopeful one day that we might be able to”.
Kind but truthful and most importantly to me – positive.

I’ve always been plagued, like so many, by *those questions* when it comes to having children. It took myself and my husband three very long and trying years with many rounds of treatment to conceive my son – a total privilege and something I don’t take for granted. But we weren’t one and done by choice. Like so many women and men, secondary infertility, less talked about but equally as commonplace (it affects 1 in 7), had caught us in a chokehold.”

Trying for Another…

“Having gone through IVF relatively unscathed for my son, when we decided to dethaw a sibling a few years later, we did so with a fair amount of hope and optimism. In hindsight, we should have been more realistic, whilst the embryos were younger, my body and my uterus were most definitely not. “1 in 3’ we kept muttering to ourselves, every time we had an unsuccessful round. The math, at this point, was not just not mathing.”

What’s Kept Me Going…

“Distractions are key to keeping me sane and positive. My obsession in making the fertility space better served for those women and men TTC (trying to conceive) became my full focus. It also gave me the reason to become part of a growing collective making access to better fertility treatment, services and products – after all, it should be a right, not a privilege. Frustrated with the lack of good quality egg and sperm health supplements at an accessible price point to support my own IVF journey, I co-founded OVA (theovaco.com) a clinically backed fertility and reproductive health supplement brand launching Summer 2024. At OVA, we want to bring the TTC (Trying To Conceive) community the tools to take charge of their reproductive health and be better prepared nutritionally to positively navigate their fertility journey – whatever that route may look like. And my route, it seems, has many twists and turns.”

Find out more about OVA

My Biggest Piece of Advice…

“Find your tribe of cheerleaders – those who have or are going through the same thing as you – it’s far less lonely. OVA’s growing community (WEOVACAME) on whatsapp has selfishly become my safe space as I navigate my next chapter. It’s been there to commiserate, lift me up, laugh with me, lend a much needed kind and hopeful word and advice and given me the confidence to advocate for myself in a medical setting. Most importantly it’s shown me that the TTC community is a very special one and that kindness is guaranteed.”

Join the WEOVACAME WhatsApp Group

The Things That Help Me…

The Apps
The Apps

“Mindful IVF is full of soothing meditations for each phase of your IVF cycle and I also love Mindicine, which has specific sounds waves to relieve stress. Both are excellent for helping to calm an anxious mind.”

Download now
The Podcasts
The Podcasts

“Big Fat Negative, MissionBaby & Am I Ovary Acting? Are my favourites. Hearing others talk about their own fertility journeys, anecdotes, advice and general cheerleading makes you feel a little less alone and a little more in control.”

Listen now
The Resource
The Resource

“The Fertility Network is a brilliant patient friendly hub of information, factsheets, a supportive phone line, nationwide online and offline support groups and advice for fertility in the workplace and living without children after fertility treatment. It’s invaluable, free, and very kind.”

Find out more
The Supplement
The Supplement

“Biased yes! But OVA HER, fertility and pregnancy support is our take on a prenatal supplement, but better. It is designed with your egg health specifically in mind, with 26 clinically backed, scientifically tested and ovary approved ingredients in their more therapeutic forms. *That said, we would always say you cannot out supplement a good diet full of good quality proteins, healthy fats (olive oils, oily fish), dark leafy greens, pulses, nuts and citrus fruits. *If in doubt, think Mediterranean.”

Find out more
At Home Testing
At Home Testing

“My advice for anyone is to be proactive about understanding your own fertility levels. The good news is that it’s never been easier to test your hormone levels at home. I recommend Hertility’s Hormone and Fertility Test – a quick and simple blood test with results explained through their brilliant aftercare stable of doctors. Ease of mind for those who don’t know where to start.”

Read The Mum Club’s Review

My IVF Injection Hack

What’s Next?

“As for my next chapter – I’m about to embark on another embryo transfer but I’m also finding peace in envisioning what the future would look like for us as a triangle family. And to be honest, it’s looking pretty darn good.”

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