Multiple sclerosis, Nick, Struggles

Crummy timing

If there is such a thing as a biological clock, then mine is defunct.

Because if it were working, surely it would have alerted me, say, five years ago to start thinking about having a family.

Instead, it waits until a most inopportune moment to finally chirp up.

Oh, you have MS now? You are on three Category C drugs? Perfect! Let’s get cracking on this baby thing.

Stupid clock.

While I tend to subscribe to the “better late than never” adage, it’s never so easy in practice.

I’ve gotten conflicting advice on whether to stay on my treatment. Two doctors have indicated that it would probably be OK to, but to stop the minute I find out I’m pregnant.

The drug nurse said that wasn’t such a hot idea — not enough studies have been done in humans (or animals, for that matter) to ensure that it will be safe going.

An MS friend was off of the same treatment four months before trying to conceive, and we have the same neurologist. She is now a mom.

The biggest risks on the treatment are miscarriages and preemies. The biggest risk off? MS rears its ugly head again. And every lesion, every exacerbation has the potential to cause permanent damage.

It’s a gamble. I knew that going in. With that in mind, I saw these as my options:

I stop treatment, open myself up to this disease and we go for it.

I stay on treatment, and live every month with the persistent worry that things will fall apart (I also subscribe to the idea of Murphy’s Law).

Neither one feels right.

I suppose there is a third option, and that is take the whole baby thing off the agenda entirely.

But that feels most wrong of all.

10 thoughts on “Crummy timing”

  1. No matter which option you choose, please know that we will be continually praying for you, your husband, and your future child/children. Love you much, cousin!

  2. I have friends who are becoming foster parents this summer. They can’t have kids on their own and hope to adopt. Taking kids off the table totally just seems unfair to you. Adoption isn’t for everyone and there are costs involved. But there are other options aside from not having children at all. Good luck with whatever you decide.

  3. My friend Melanie became unexpectedly pregnant while on her MS treatment. She stopped taking the drugs at that time, about 2 1/2 months into the pregnancy. Everything was fine. I’m not sure if she stayed on her treatment plan while trying to conceive a second time. That baby arrived a few months ago. She did say that pregnancy prevents seems to put MS on hold. Afterward, she had to resume treatment immediately because it flares up as soon as the baby arrives. Whatever you decide to do, we’re with you all the way!

  4. Everyone is different, just as our MS symptoms are so varied. I was fortunate that I got MS after I had children. I do know a fellow MSer who got pregnant while on a DMD and then stopped taking it. She thrived and had no MS symptom all through the pregnancy and while she breastfed. Another friend went off the drugs several months before becoming pregnant, then went back after the baby was weaned. So there’s no exact answer. You need to do what you feel is best. Good luck!

  5. Hold your head up friend! And yes you have other options. Like the other said there is adoption or foster parenting. You can always try the option of trying to get pregnant while still on meds for a while, if it doesn’t work you can revisit stopping your meds for a while. Things may be different with your disease six months from now and you may be more stable that your Dr. will think it is OK to be off the meds for a period of time. And always remember that the risks are only during the time you are trying to conceive and shortly after you have the baby. Don’t give up. If you want a child, the risks are worth it. In the meantime, call me. Let’s go have lunch.

  6. Follow your heart! No matter what you choose I pray that you stay healthy and if you choose to have a baby that the baby is healthy also.

  7. It’s a big decision to be sure! Jennifer and I have several friends with MS who have had children. Let me know if you’d like to get in touch with them as I know they’d be more than willing to help you find the best decision for you and Nick. In the end, I’m sure you will make the best decision! On a related note, I came across this story when I was doing some research for a different project on the NPR website: Wishing you the best! Dan

  8. Such a big decision for you and Nick to have to make. I think you guys will be such wonderful parents that Door No. 3 doesn’t sound like a good option. Whether you shake up your meds or explore adoption or embrace some other option that hasn’t even surfaced yet, I think you and Nick are meant to be parents. As always, BIG HUGS to you guys!

  9. I think it’s been said before and it’s worth repeating, it’s so unfair how we spend a decade or so trying NOT to get pregnant and then when we finally come around that it takes more than a one night stand to get knocked up. I want to say don’t worry, everything will be fine, but I remember the madness that goes along with the ticking biological clock. Every month, aunt flow was a blow until it finally happened. I sure hope it happens for you some day soon because your kids would be blessed. And would have great hats.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s