I read this article in the Journal of Biblical Counseling, Winter 2005 (Volume 23:1). I was impressed with it then, and wholeheartedly recommend you take the time to read it now.
Have you had your appendix removed? Did you go through counseling to work through your issues about losing that body part? Have you counseled anyone about losing his appendix?
Probably not. You can live your whole life without your appendix. You can go to work, mow your lawn, go to the grocery store, and live a normal life. Why then is it so devastating when your reproductive system doesn’t work, but you can still do all those same things?
In one study, 63% of women who experienced both infertility and divorce rated their infertility as more painful than their divorce. In another study, women who experienced either chronic or life-threatening diseases ranked the emotional pain of infertility at similar levels to that of terminal illness.
Dealing with infertility is hard. Your God-given desire to have children is thwarted. As you grow up, people say to you, “When you get married and have your kids….” Everyone assumes fertility.
Infertility shatters your identity. You have a picture in your mind. You are married. You have a house with a white picket fence. You have a minivan and a big dog. But where are the children? Infertility shatters this rosy picture.