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Marriage Makeover: Can Our Marriage Survive Infertility?

THE COUPLE'S REACTION: continued...

Does your marriage need a makeover?
Write us at redbook@hearst.com and put "Marriage Makeover" in the subject line. You could appear in REDBOOK!


Monica and Steve with Dog on the Couch
Monica: The most helpful part of the whole Marriage Makeover experience has been all the positive feedback we've received. As a result of the article, we've received wonderful support from friends as well as letters from readers opening their hearts to us with compassion and sympathy; those letters really made my day. Plus, my mother called me crying to tell me how Steve and I would make such great parents, and that phone call really touched my heart.

This experience also moved the adoption talk from the back burner to the front burner on a simmer. Before, I'd bring up the possibility of adoption and Steve wouldn't want to talk about it, but opening up in the magazine has made us more comfortable talking to each other and discussing which gender child and from which age group we'd like to consider adopting. Iris Waichler, the marriage expert, suggested writing down the pros and cons of adoption and then comparing notes, and while we haven't done that yet, we now feel like we're ready to give it a try because we're finally in the right place.

We've also been getting back into the intimate aspects of our bond, which is nice. The bottom line is that we're a really happy couple, and we've put in a lot of work to move past the pain of infertility and on to bigger and brighter things. We love to spend time with our family and friends; we continue to travel and explore; and we know how to communicate with each other. We're your average couple who can't conceive a child on our own, and although we're content, we're wondering if there isn't more to life. The adoption conversation has really opened up for us.

Steve: Participating in the article had the effect of bringing up a lot of feelings and emotions for us. Hearing Monica talk about how infertility has affected her helped me to see her perspective and bring the topic more out in the open for us. We're hoping that once the craziness of the holidays is over, we'll seriously start looking into adoption. We want to explore what our options are and see what the process is all about. When we were dealing with infertility and the treatments to help us conceive, the stress of it was a main focus in our lives and really consumed us. Luckily, we've really moved past that. Although we didn't end up with a child, it's a huge relief to have gotten through that experience together and to move on as a team.

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