This blog will hopefully address the issue of M.E sufferers bearing children. Let me begin by saying that I consider myself to be exceptionally lucky; I have never had a maternal bone in my body and so having M.E is not a deciding factor in whether I have children or not. I have never cooed over a baby in my life and parenthood is not something I have ever aspired to. However, I think it is a sensitive topic that needs to be addressed. So, let me pretend that I have the desire to have 2.4 children and a ‘complete family unit’.
I know there are people that are diagnosed with M.E and still go on to have the children they yearn for with mixed results. Some go through pregnancy problem free, others don’t. However, I would make the conscious choice to not have them. Because of the lack of research, there are too many ifs, buts and maybes about what a future life with children would involve. I have 3 strong opinions:
1. I am not prepared to take the risk that my body would not cope with physical changes that occur during pregnancy or prepared to keep my fingers crossed that my symptoms severity would not worsen. Why have children if the process of giving birth leaves you unable to care for them as you would like to? My body reacts badly to hormonal changes during my time of the month. Hormonal fluctuations cause every single symptom to flare. Pregnancy is the ultimate hormonal shift, I am guessing that my body would react to it 10 times worse than it does every month.
2. I barely have enough energy to look after myself and live my own life. Constant demands on my time would worsen my M.E experience. Some may consider that to be selfish, that is why I do not want to put myself into that situation.
3. IF and I mean IF, M.E is hereditary, I would not want to take the risk of passing this absolutely life destroying illness on to those who I love the most.
I do feel sad that my parents will not get any grandchildren from me but they accept my decision and acknowledge my reasons for remaining childless. Maybe that is why I have such a strong bond with Patch…he is my ‘baby’ and fills any emotional needs that I have.