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Monday, April 4, 2011

What if Losing Weight Doesn't Cure my Infertility?

In my perfect world, in a years time I will weigh 135 lbs and then I'll start trying to conceive and within 3 months of trying I'll be pregnant and carry a healthy baby to term.  But the world isn't perfect.  Sometimes I feel like life has given me the big middle fingers on several occasions.  I do have so much to be thankful for but there are times when I just wish some things were easier.  Like having a baby.

I went back and looked at my last 10 years of weight loss on Weight Watchers.  Crazy right?  That I've done it 4 different times over 10 years, usually giving up after 4 months and sometimes I lost 20 lbs and sometimes I lost 2 in that time.  So when I was looking at my "post-wedding" weight history, I realized that I weighed 161 for quite a few months and did not get pregnant.  I was convinced I was around 175 when we started trying and so I'm a little freaked out that I have 27 pounds to go to be at that weight and chances are that is not enough to cure my infertility.   Which even at 161, I did not love my body.  I still wore a size 12 and it was still hard to find clothes that looked good on me so I had no plans on stopping at 160.

So what if this is the time when this weight loss journey really is successful and I hit my goal weight of 135 and then..........I still can't get pregnant on my own.  I'm convinced that I could ovulate on my own at my ideal weight and that Metformin wouldn't even be necessary.  Because really, I get nauseous just thinking about taking 2000mg of Met again during my next pregnancy. 

I've said it before, I was 11 years old and maybe 4'9" when I last weighed 135 so I have no concept at all of what my body would do at a normal weight or even how I'd look.  So what if at 135 I'm still screwed up?  I should not focus so much on the what if's and the parts I can't control that may happen in the future but it's hard not to let my mind go to that place. I feel bad sometimes for even complaining because yes I had to take some pills, well lots of pills, and get shots a few times a week and Dylan was born healthy and I'm so lucky to have him.  Sometimes I feel like when I tell people I had infertility issues that they think of course I did, I'm overweight, lose some weight!

Anyone out there ever taken Clomid or Metformin to conceive and then lost a significant amount of weight and get pregnant without all of that?  Or vice versa, lost the weight and still had to take the drugs?


  1. Hi Brandi,

    I stayed up till midnight last night watching ALL of you youtube videos! I have an almost 2 year old daughter (that was a surprise baby!) and was recently diagnosed with PCOS and as we are beginning to try for our second baby, I am finding that I am not ovulating on my own. I just wanted to thank you for sharing your journey on youtube. It's so awesome to see other women going through the same thing, and you give me hope as I'm trying for #2!

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  3. Hi Katie, thanks for commenting so I could find your blog!!! I love your blog, it's awesome! You were cracking me up with your sponge bob side view. I was looking in the mirror yesterday and I said to my husband I looked like I was 6 months pregnant!! You look great though, it just made me laugh:)

    Kim, I am not too adamant about knowing THAT much about every women's body and infertility but I do think the Metformin is key. My doctor is very level headed and smart as a whip and when she heard I wasn't consistantly taking Met before I knew I was pregnant, she freaked out and gave me an 80% chance of miscarriage. I think it can't hurt for me to lose the weight but it would be nice if it was the key to getting pregnant on my own.

  4. Hey Brandi,

    I hope weight loss is the cure for you! I was 135lbs (higher now) and 5ft6 with pcos and there seemed to be no cure/formula for me. I tried Met, Clomid, Femara, injections and nothing worked to make me ovulate. Sometimes I think it is much easier for overweight PCOSers to get pregnant b/c they often just need to take Metformin. For "lean PCOS", there is no solution. :-(

  5. I often wonder the same. I was 135 once, and every number in between 135-195 and no baby. I have these thoughts that what if I lose all this weight and still dont get what "I WANT" then I come back down to reality and say- I got what I NEEDED- a healthy body, but it isnt up to me to get what I WANT! As harsh as that sounds, somedays I am okay with accepting that and somedays i am not okay with that--- if i live my life and never have a baby i will be sad. But i try to focus on what i can change. I can change my weight. I can change my habbits, I can change my reactions to situations...but i cant change my ovaries. I CAN adopt and keep trying all my life. I think it is about setting goals as well. Lets say- I lose weight--- i get down to that 135 i might say ill give myself 2 years at this weight before adopting....I guess trying to be positive is the only way to get through those negative patches???? (and prayer) :) hope you are on the up and up now!

  6. @Anonymous- I do agree that for overweight PCOS'ers we do have something in our control that we can still try even if it still doesn't work. It must be frustrating to be healthy and still not conceive and obviously that is my fear. My friend that was a lean PCOS gal told me she went to a naturopath, did multiple colonics, and did a clean diet cleanse and was able to conceive. I'm not saying that works for everyone, but I did conceive a week after doing the cleanse she suggested.
    @Annie, I love your thoughts on Need vs. Want, very well put!!

  7. Hi Brandi,

    I just came across your youtube videos and watched them all in the past few hours. They are great! I've struggled with PCOS symptoms since I was in high school, and when my husband and I wanted to have a baby, it wasn't as easy as I had hoped. After trying for about a year, my husband got deployed to Iraq. I decided that while he was gone, I was going to work on improving my health and losing weight. I stopped eating processed sugar and starchy foods and worked out pretty intensely 6 days a week. I was able to lose 12 lbs in 3 months, going from 170 to 158 (I felt like with all the work I was putting in, I should have lost closer to 50 lbs!). I also started using a progesterone cream that I rubbed on my fore arms 1 or 2 times a day, and that really helped regulate my periods.

    So a few months after my husband returned from Iraq, we finally conceived our first baby without any fertility drugs! Unfortunately, my diet flew out the window once the morning sickness started because sweets were the only thing I craved, and the thought of healthy food literally made me gag.

    Once I got pregnant, I made sure to mention my PCOS history to my doctor (we had just moved to a new state, so I was starting fresh with a new doctor), but she didn't really think it was a big deal. She never said anything to me about the possibility of requiring progesterone support to maintain the pregnancy, and I hadn't really researched that sort of thing on my own before then. I was never really fond of this doctor, but by the time I got around to switching, it was too late. I went into preterm labor at 24 weeks, most likely from hormone related issues, and my son was born shortly after. Sadly, because he was born so early, he had several complications and we only had 25 precious days together.

    My husband and I are thinking we want to try to conceive again this summer, but we're terrified. I have started seeing a different OB who specializes in high risk pregnancies, and she told me I'd require progesterone support before I get pregnant and then throughout my future pregnancies. I guess I was curious about how that went for you? Did your doctor adjust the amount of progesterone you received based on the levels indicated in your blood tests or did you just receive a standard amount every week? My new doctor didn't mention any other medications like Metformin, but maybe I'll inquire about that at my next visit.

    I'm sorry my comment is so long. You are blessed to have had such a healthy pregnancy and a doctor that was so attentive to you and your concerns. Best of luck to you in your weight loss and in trying to conceive when that time comes around.

    Take care,


  8. I've been subscribed to you on Youtube for a few months now. I, too, am struggling with infertility problems (ttc for 6 months now) and I'm currently trying to find a good doctor to figure out what is wrong (who knew finding a good doc would be SO hard!). Sometimes I wonder if getting fit would solve all my problems, too.

    Anyway, thanks for sharing these entries and videos. You aren't alone in any of this. :)

  9. @Kadja, I'm so sorry about your baby:( Makes me cry every time I reread your story.

    I believe my progesterone shots were the same dose each time and I was continually getting blood drawn so it could have been my dose was changed and I just didn't know, I trusted my doctor knew what to do. I would absolutely do some research on Metformin and try to find it from very reliable sources, print it out, and take it to your appointment. It's harder for a doctor to brush it off when it's right there in black and white. Maybe you won't need it but it would be nice for the doctor to explain exactly why you don't right? Any information you get regarding this, please share with me, I'd love to make sure other women are able to know about it also.

    I never underestimate just how lucky I am that I found an amazing doctor and that everything went great and Dylan was born healthy. I hope the same for you this time around and please keep me posted!

  10. @Laura, thanks for being a subscriber:) It is so hard to find great doctors these days but just do your research, even start contacting infertility clinics in your part of the US and maybe see if they have recommendations for doctors in your city. Many of the big clinics have doctors they work with in a lot of different cities so that the patients can get most of their care where they live and then if they need IVF or special treatments, then they travel to the bigger clinic:) Good luck on your journey, keep me posted:)

  11. Your post is certainly one of the best source of valuable information every reader must follow. Glad to hear a lot from you soon. Keep on sharing! Thanks