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Episode 187 - I Was Supposed to Have a Baby

Updated: Mar 24


Imagine traveling somewhere with no map. You know your destination but have no concept of how complicated the journey will be, or even how long.


That's us every day.


We have goals for ourselves. We want our marriages to be better. We want ourSELVES to be better.


And we dream up a map. If I put in x amount of work, it'll go like this and BOOM, success.

Then we get on our journey and we hit the part where success was supposed to happen and it... doesn't.


It's very easy at this point to think the destination was a dream, that the journey was pointless, that you wasted your effort.


But I find that the realization that I was just wrong (about how long it would take or how hard it would be) is actually a huge relief in this moment.


Back up, back on the path.


PS There's probably nowhere we cling to our invisible maps like we do when we're anticipating becoming a parent. Last week, Lauren Allen shared her infertility journey as it related to her physical health. In this week's episode, we took a deep dive into the whole topic of infertility and what we all need to know with Aimee Baron, MD, the founder of I Was Supposed to Have a Baby.


WHAT YOU'LL DISCOVER IN THIS EPISODE:

  1. How "I Was Supposed to Have a Baby" came to be

  2. Finding the good in social media

  3. Where can people find "I Was Supposed to Have a Baby"

  4. How common is pregnancy loss

  5. The experience of the husband and planning ahead

  6. It's OK to grieve

  7. How do we support someone with pregnancy loss or infertility

  8. What is secondary infertility

  9. The question we all need to stop asking

  10. The question we should ask

  11. It's OK to drop in and drop out


FEATURED IN THIS EPISODE:

  1. Read more about Aimee below

  2. Instagram: @iwassupposedtohaveababy


Aimee's Bio:

Aimee Baron MD, FAAP, is the Founder and Executive Director of I Was Supposed to Have a Baby. Dr. Baron was formerly the Director of Innovation and Growth at NechamaComfort, and has also worked as an attending pediatrician at the Newborn Nursery and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital before taking a leave of absence after her third miscarriage. Aimee lives in the greater New York area with her husband and children, somehow managing to find time to whip up gourmet eats in between Instagram posts.


YT Ep 187 - I Was Supposed to Have A Baby - Dr. Aimee Baron ===

<00:00:00> Kayla Levin: Hello my friends. Welcome back. I'm really looking forward to sharing this interview with you. This is of course, a bit heavier. Um, we're gonna be talking about infertility this week than what we normally do, but I wanna just say first of all, that whether this is something that you've dealt with personally or not, I think you're gonna find this episode really exceptionally valuable because.

<00:00:22> Kayla Levin: For some of us, our expectations or our concepts around infertility can be kind of elementary, um, especially if we haven't had to deal with it ourselves. And what I love about what Dr. Baron shares in this interview, and she has an amazing organization, she's gonna tell you all about it inside the interview, but is all the different faces that infertility can take and how we can respond, whether it's for us or for somebody else in our lives.

<00:00:47> Kayla Levin: So there's so much to be gained and I know that you're gonna find this interview very enlightening and meaningful enjoy.

<00:00:56> Kayla Levin: Thank you for coming on.

<00:00:59> Dr Aimee Baron: It is my pleasure and it's my honor. Thank you so much for having me.

<00:01:02> Introduction to Dr. Aimee Baron ---

<00:01:02> Kayla Levin: I know about you from your work that you do with, I was supposed to Have a baby. I would love for you to just, you know, introduce that a little bit to our audience. Explain. What it is, it actually, I would actually really love to hear the story, what inspired you to create this and what is your goal with it and what is it?

<00:01:19> Kayla Levin: For those of you who don't know,

<00:01:21> Dr Aimee Baron: Yeah. Yeah. Look, I mean, I'm a person. I'm, I'm a pediatrician by training, who, you know, thought I was gonna get married and have a bunch of kids, and I was gonna do that forever. And, and that was gonna be my life. And I, I love kids, I love pediatrics, and I just, that was the assumption. That was the goal. That was the dream, that was the plan.

<00:01:44> Dr Aimee Baron: And we all know what happens when you plan, right? You plan and. God laughs and so God laughed at me. Um, we thank God, um, had our first very quickly. But unfortunately after my first, it took us, you know, almost three and a half years to have our second. In that time period, we went through lots of testing for infertility and a whole infertility workup.

<00:02:10> Dr Aimee Baron: Um, neither my husband nor nor I, you know, really had anything. Frankly, they couldn't find anything that was. You know, that they could do. Um, but we still went through all the testing. We started a bunch of medications. I did end up getting pregnant. I had an eight week loss. Um, I had just a tremendous number of medical complications after that loss.

<00:02:33> Dr Aimee Baron: And then inexplicably as sort of quickly as that infertility came, it left, um, I got pregnant with my son and. All seemed to be good in the world. Then got pregnant with my daughter. So then I had three kids very quickly. Um, and we thought, okay, you know, three was nice, three was wonderful. We, we felt that we were incredibly blessed, but didn't feel like our family was complete and kept, kept going.

<00:03:04> Dr Aimee Baron: I got pregnant with my fourth again, getting pregnant, not my problem anymore. And, Made it past that eight week, eight week mark. Um, which was always a point of anxiety for me because when you, you know, when you have a loss at eight weeks, when you have a loss, at any point, your subsequent pregnancies are about getting to that point and making it over that hurdle.

<00:03:30> Dr Aimee Baron: And you feel like once you've gotten over that hurdle, everything's gonna be fine. And that's always what my doctor said. You know, once you make it past eight weeks, you see a heartbeat, everything is good and everything will be fine. Um, and in that fourth pregnancy, made it over that hurdle. Thank God everything was fine. And I walked into my 16 week appointment and there was no heartbeat. Um, There was no answer. There was no reason I was healthy, the baby was healthy, and my doctor just said, okay, it happens, Aimee, it's fine. Try again.

<00:04:02> Kayla Levin: Mm-hmm.

<00:04:03> Dr Aimee Baron: was certainly not fine. Let's, let's call it that. I was not fine, but we tried again because there was nothing more to try again and that exact scenario.

<00:04:17> Dr Aimee Baron: Happened three more times over the course of about two and a half years. So I would make it past that horrific eight week mark, perfect, healthy heartbeat. Um, and I would get to either 16 or 17 weeks and then nothing. And then nothing. Um, I had two healthy boys and two healthy girls that were not alive anymore.

<00:04:45> Dr Aimee Baron: Um, I was broken. My body was physically broken. I did, and not pregnant so many times. Over the course of those years, I was emotionally broken, just dealing with the grief and the pain and the suffering and people trying to understand, but not really understanding what I was going through, trying to be a parent to my other three kids. Really feeling like a shell of myself. Um, for me, this work, I was supposed to have a baby. It's personal because I've lived through it and I know what it's like. Um, we did get our happy ending. That's a longer story, which. It's not necessary to go into right at this moment. We never did find out the reason why I kept losing all of these babies, but we decided to try again one more time after I had tried to heal myself the best I could.

<00:05:47> Dr Aimee Baron: Emotionally, physically, we had taken a long break. I even promised at one point that I would never try again. Um, we did try one more time and. I was older at that point and I dropped two eggs, and I have twins who are delicious and yummy and healthy and amazing. Um, one boy and one girl. Um, and I think, you know, in, in that, you know, in that miracle that I had, I just, you know, for a long time was just like trying to soak in their deliciousness and trying to.

<00:06:27> Dr Aimee Baron: Just savor all of the things because I knew what I didn't have before and, and I just wanted to really, you know, relish that experience. But there came a point in time when they were about two years old where I said like, okay, enough, like, I need to go back to work. What my brain needs to start working again.

<00:06:47> Dr Aimee Baron: It's, it's like, it's time. I've been, you know, dealing with too many toys and bottles and things for a while, baby talk. Um, And my local shul asked me to speak publicly about my experience with pregnancy loss, and I said yes, which was pretty crazy frankly. But the reason I did it was because my losses were in the second trimester.

<00:07:15> Dr Aimee Baron: They were public, and so everybody knew that I was pregnant. And then everybody knew I was not, so these were not secrets that I was hiding. It was horrible and it was painful and I wasn't talking to very many people, but they were public. What I was going through was public, and so I felt that I had this responsibility to share about what the experience of pregnancy loss looked like from the inside.

<00:07:46> Dr Aimee Baron: To try to educate and sensitize my community. And then from there, like, you know, things just kind of started moving. Um, I, I thought I was going back to pediatrics and then someone said, oh no, like, you know, why don't you meet this one? Why don't you meet that one? And, and I ended up meeting, um, Reva Judas, who runs this organization called Nechama Comfort, which is, um, an organization based in New Jersey that specifically deals with pregnancy loss.

<00:08:14> Dr Aimee Baron: And I. I was like, oh, yeah, I, I need to do this. Like I need to take my medical knowledge and my personal experience and I need to do something with it. And so I, I worked for her, I worked for that organization for three years, and in that time I, what I saw was this emergence of people talking about their fertility experiences. Publicly, not only in the way that I did it, but I saw, you know, people were starting to talk about it in newspaper articles, in magazine articles. It was also coming out like you would see TV shows and movies. But the biggest piece of it that I thought that I could use to help support the Jewish community, the biggest place where I saw this.

<00:09:11> Dr Aimee Baron: Just explosion of fertility stories and fertility support was on social media and specifically on Instagram at that point. And I just, I was awed by it. It was, it was, it was wild to me. And it was like almost miraculous. Like these people were taking accounts anonymous or not, and they were using social media to talk about their stories.

<00:09:39> Dr Aimee Baron: And get support from all of these other women and families that were also going through it. And I thought, I could do this. I could do this for the Jewish community. I could run an organization that utilized the beauty of what social media could offer. And there is beauty. There's a lot of bad, but there is beauty as well.

<00:10:05> Dr Aimee Baron: I could take the good of social media and I could use it to support the Jewish community, and so that's what I was supposed to have. A baby is, it's personal, but for me, this, I wanted to build a space where, Anyone could come at any time of day or night, regardless of where you live geographically, whether you live in the middle of Brooklyn or whether you live in Timbuktu.

<00:10:36> Dr Aimee Baron: But social media is the great equalizer. You get online and you get on, and you immediately feel this sense of connection with other people who have gone through similar things, and so. That's what I did. So, you know, I was supposed to have a baby is an organization. We, we use all kinds of social platforms in order to be able to bring support to anyone in the Jewish community that's struggling to have a child.

<00:11:06> Dr Aimee Baron: And, and we, we know that because we are dealing with a very small slice of what the fertility experience is. I'm holding people emotionally in a very difficult time in their lives, but I'm not giving them medical guidance. I'm not giving them financial assistance. I'm not giving them Jewish law guidance.

<00:11:31> Dr Aimee Baron: I'm not providing them a support group for them to go to, you know, in their town. I'm giving them a virtual space for them to meet. So to speak and come as they are and to feel support. And so the other piece of our mission is very much making sure that people have those connections on the grounds where they live, so that they can fill in the other holes of the support that they need.

<00:11:57> Where can people find &quot;I was supposed to have a baby&quot;? ---

<00:11:57> Kayla Levin: That's the main, so what does that look like? So if, uh, what, what what I've seen, so you're, when you say you're on social media platforms, where will people find I was supposed to have a baby?

<00:12:05> Dr Aimee Baron: Right. So we started with Instagram, and we chose Instagram specifically because Instagram's demographic is the 20 to 40 year olds. That's their main target audience, that that's their main user. I. And those are people in their fertility years. So that's the main space. That's where we started. Um, we also have a presence on Facebook.

<00:12:25> Dr Aimee Baron: We also have a presence on LinkedIn. We also, in the last year, we also started a presence on TikTok, which I hate, but we do it anyway. Um, it's just a totally different platform, so it's whatever. Um, and. We also have a podcast, so we, we are trying to reach people in whatever way possible that we can, where we think that there are pockets of people who need support.

<00:12:49> Dr Aimee Baron: And so are we on everything? No, we are not, but we are, we are trying to reach the biggest pockets of people, um, in as many spaces as possible.

<00:13:00> How common is pregnancy loss? ---

<00:13:00> Kayla Levin: Okay. Amazing. And what people, what I've seen is that often it will be someone's story, someone's personal story, but it's, it's, it's written text. And doesn't necessarily say the person's name, right? So people are being given an opportunity. This is something that I think is so beautiful because I, I've seen a lot of back and forth with people about like, you know, whether you quote unquote, should or shouldn't say.

<00:13:22> Kayla Levin: And there really, you know, if you've had a loss, there really isn't. Not only is there no right answer, in my opinion, in my humble opinion, you're the expert, but also often you're not gonna know the answer right away. And so there's a a period of time where a woman or a couple might be deciding whether they wanna take this information and, and, and reach out to people in their lives.

<00:13:45> Kayla Levin: And you're creating kind of this, this area in the middle where they can get that support in, in a very anonymous way. Um, see this is something that is. By nature, it's just a private thing. And some people choose to make it not private, but by default it's not something that people often will know about except for situations like yours where you're already into the second trimester.

<00:14:04> Kayla Levin: Trimester. Um, and so it can feel very, very alone. And I know there are newlyweds who think that, or not just newlyweds, but you know, women who think that, like, they don't realize how common pregnancy loss is.

<00:14:22> Dr Aimee Baron: Absolutely, and I, I think, you know, look, the first piece that we try to do for people, the first thing we try to do for people is we just try to hold them. Regardless of where they are, regardless of what they have experienced, regardless of which community they're in, regardless of whether they're sharing or not sharing, where they're to hold them where they are, to give them the validation, the comfort, the support of, Hey, we get it.

<00:14:53> Dr Aimee Baron: Here are lots and lots of people who are also in your shoes, whether they're anonymous or not. Exactly as you said. Um, And you are not the only one. And I think that the, there is tremendous power in community, but there is also tremendous power in education and in knowledge. I mean, I don't know if most people know this, but the reality is that when you take infertility and loss, they're incredibly common in all communities.

<00:15:30> Dr Aimee Baron: I mean, just the numbers I think people don't know. So if you don't mind, I'm just gonna share them.

<00:15:35> Kayla Levin: yes.

<00:15:36> Dr Aimee Baron: So infertility happens to about one in six couples, right? That's not a small number. That means, you know, especially in the religious Jewish community where families are often 4, 5, 6, 10, 12. This is happening to someone that you love, someone that you know in your family, and if it's not happening in your immediate family, then it's happening to your cousins.

<00:16:06> Dr Aimee Baron: It's happening to your best friend, it's happening to your neighbor. This is happening, and what's even more striking is the number of people. That deal with miscarriage, and I said people, but what I really actually wanna give you is the number of times that this happens. So just listen to this number.

<00:16:25> Dr Aimee Baron: It's actually pretty mind blowing. Miscarriage happens in one, in four pregnancies, not one in four people. It happens to one in four pregnancies. So when you take the religious community, Our religious community, one that values children, one that says that we should prove our, our job, one of the pieces that we hold dear is to be fruitful and multiply.

<00:16:59> Dr Aimee Baron: So when we are having lots of kids, the reality is if you just play the numbers game, the reality is, is that it's you. Or it's again, someone that you know and love that has been through a miscarriage, and that's not something small. And I think the problem is that what is the definition of a miscarriage?

<00:17:25> Dr Aimee Baron: A miscarriage means that you've lost a baby sometime before 20 weeks. Now, in our community, a lot of times people aren't sharing the fact that they're pregnant. Sometimes before 20 weeks, but more commonly, people are not sharing that they're pregnant really until they're out of their first trimester.

<00:17:49> Dr Aimee Baron: And most miscarriages happen in that first trimester before 12 or 13 weeks. So people are in this awkward stage of. Well, I'm pregnant and that's amazing and that's great. And you're like super excited about it. And you know, you and your husband, you and your partner, you're talking about it and it's amazing, but you're not sharing it with anybody else.

<00:18:12> Dr Aimee Baron: So nobody else knows how excited you are. And then God forbid if you lose the baby, then. Who's there to support you and help you Getting to the hospital and making sure hospital or doctor, and making sure you're getting the right treatment, making sure you are making the right decision as to what's the best plan for you in terms of how this pregnancy is gonna come out.

<00:18:37> Dr Aimee Baron: What if the pregnancy, if it comes out spontaneously, and then you need emergent medical care, or you need to see a doctor right away. The only person who knows. Is your husband is your spouse. And so there's that awkward piece of, well, I was pregnant, but now I'm not pregnant, but I haven't told you, but now I need to tell you I need support, but I, but I don't need support.

<00:19:08> Dr Aimee Baron: But don't tell me, but tell me. It's like, it's this, it's this very difficult space for people to try to wrap their head around.

<00:19:17> The experience of the husband &amp; planning ahead ---

<00:19:17> Kayla Levin: Yeah. Yeah. I'm a hundred percent. And, and not only is, is your husband the only one who knows, but he's also going through his whole process as well,

<00:19:26> Dr Aimee Baron: A thousand percent because miscarriages, yes, they may happen to the woman, they're in the woman's body, but this was a baby that. Was both of yours and the excitement and the planning and the dreaming. You know, the minute you get two lines on that stick, right, it's, you're immediately thinking nine months ahead.

<00:19:49> Dr Aimee Baron: Okay? So now it's the summer, so that means that, we'll, we, like God willing, the due date will be on PEs A. So, okay, what are we doing for Peoc? Where are we going? And who are we gonna share it with? And how are we gonna do this? Like, who's gonna know and who, like you, ime, like it's, it's June. And you're talking pizza, right?

<00:20:07> Dr Aimee Baron: Like that's what everybody does. And so when I get people who come to me and say things like, oh, it was just an early loss. Like, why are they so sad? Why are they grieving? Why are they going, like, why is it such a big deal? It's a big, because it was a baby to them. It wasn't just two lines on a stick. It wasn't just a couple of cells or a ball of cells.

<00:20:35> Dr Aimee Baron: It was a baby. They were dreaming, they were planning, they were thinking of names. They were thinking, is it gonna be blonde or blue-eyed, blonde-haired, or, or brown haired. They're, they're, they're thinking and they're dreaming and hoping, and so, you know, I, I love having conversations like this because I love being able to share with audiences like yours about the fact that.

<00:21:05> Dr Aimee Baron: Miscarriage is very common of the numbers. It's just a numbers game. It is common, but it is also important that people know that there are other people out there that are going through this and have gone through this and that it's okay to reach out for support and to not feel alone like they've been the only one who's ever gone through this in their lives.

<00:21:32> Kayla Levin: And it's okay if the person you're reaching out to for support isn't the person like that you might reach out to for other situations. Like, yes, maybe it would normally be your mom. And right now it, that's just not resonating. It's not sitting right with you. And it's okay cuz your job right now, I think it's just to get the support that you need.

<00:21:51> It's ok to grieve ---

<00:21:51> Kayla Levin: I, I, I appreciate the way that you were sharing this because I, I do wanna like make sure that we're so explicit that. Yes, it's one in four pregnancies, but that doesn't make this a mundane run-of-the-mill situation. Right. And I think that you are illustrating that so beautifully. It's one in four pregnancies and it's a loss that deserves to be grieved.

<00:22:12> Kayla Levin: It's something that a person is going through. It's not the, the frequency doesn't make it something that we are desensitized to or should be.

<00:22:23> Dr Aimee Baron: Absolutely. I think, you know what I, what I always say is that grief is very individual. Like we can't tell people how to grieve or the way they should grieve a loss, any kind of a loss, right? You would never tell someone who like lost their father. You would never say to them, oh, it's really okay because you have a mother.

<00:22:48> Dr Aimee Baron: Right. You would never say such a thing to someone. Or in the same way, like I've, I've heard people say like if they, you know, if they had an early pregnancy loss and miscarriage, but they have a child, they're like, oh, oh, don't worry, you have other children. You would never say that. Right. So it's the, that, that idea that.

<00:23:09> Dr Aimee Baron: Early miscarriages, or miscarriages in general don't deserve the, the intensity or, or don't warrant people to feel sad is really misguided. But the piece that I also wanna bring up, which I think is just as important is, is the idea that grief and loss and the pain that people feel around these losses is very individual.

<00:23:35> Dr Aimee Baron: I, you know, We, we don't know for every, for every person it's very different. Some people may have an early loss and really like pick themselves up and be back to work in three days and never think about it again. And for them, that's normal for them. It doesn't affect them in the way that it does someone else.

<00:24:02> Dr Aimee Baron: And then for the next person, maybe it's that person's sister, maybe it's her neighbor, maybe it's her best friend. That same kind of a loss might put them out for months, months. And it's really not for us to judge, right? I can give you a million reasons why it might affect one person as opposed to another.

<00:24:26> Dr Aimee Baron: I'll, I'll give you a few right now. Maybe that pregnancy was after two years of infertility of not getting pregnant, and when they finally got pregnant, it felt like it was such a miracle that finally they got to that space. But that pregnancy only lasted for a couple of weeks, right? So you would expect the person who's grieving that pregnancy would be very different than the person who, you know, got pregnant.

<00:24:53> Dr Aimee Baron: And thank God they did, but okay, so it didn't work. So they move on very different, right? Two totally different scenarios. Um, Other kinds of grief can compound this, right? If someone, God forbid, as I mentioned before, maybe they lost a member of their family, maybe they lost their job. Maybe they're having difficulties with.

<00:25:14> Dr Aimee Baron: Other things in their life, and then God forbid they have a miscarriage. We know that pain compounds pain, grief compounds grief. And so when someone is dealing with more than one thing that's going wrong, so to speak, at a time, It can make that specific thing, that specific loss feel much more intense than a person who's only dealing with one kind of grief or one kind of specific challenge.

<00:25:43> Dr Aimee Baron: So I think like for every person, Grief and loss and pain and suffering, and the length of time that it takes them to move through it. Now, I, I just, I, I'm specifically using those words. I'm not saying get over it, I'm saying move through it totally different things. We don't say that people get over their grief.

<00:26:06> Dr Aimee Baron: We say they process and they deal with it, and they move through it so it can take two people with. Exactly the same losses. They both had seven week losses, but they're two totally different people with totally different lives and totally different cha challenges. And one person will go back to work in three days and one person will go back to work in six months.

<00:26:32> Dr Aimee Baron: Maybe it's not for us to judge.

<00:26:36> How do we support someone with infertility or pregnancy loss? ---

<00:26:36> Kayla Levin: And I know that a big piece of what you like to do is to, to help people to be more supportive, to be more sensitive. So given that we don't know how somebody is going to be affected by, by a miscarriage or a pregnancy loss or infertility, what, what do you recommend? What, how do you suggest we show up for them?

<00:26:57> Kayla Levin: Without making assumptions, like the person who's back at work in three days does not need a friend following her around saying, you clearly need to be processing this.

<00:27:05> Dr Aimee Baron: Hey, how are you? What's going on? Right? Like, exactly, exactly right. I, I think number one, you know, the first thing is to take your cues from the person, right? The person who's back at work in three days. That's not to say that she hasn't gone through something, but she has been able to process it or not, but she's back to work in three

<00:27:30> Kayla Levin: seeking normalcy.

<00:27:32> Dr Aimee Baron: Correct. She's seeking normalcy, and so for her normalcy is the way that you should treat her. Now, every now and then, do you slip in the, Hey, how you doing, thinking about you, because that could mean anything, right? It, it can mean nothing. It can mean like, you know, it's raining today. How are you feeling about the rain?

<00:27:52> Dr Aimee Baron: Or she could take it as maybe she's talking about my loss. The, these little kinds of general statements of. Hey, I'm just checking in with you and I just wanna tell you that I love you and I'm thinking about you. Those are things that we all could use no matter whether we've been through something or not.

<00:28:10> Dr Aimee Baron: So I always say to people like, use those things and continue to use them because you know, we all get annoyed if you know the car in front of us right? Cuts us off, right? That would be if someone would say to me, Hey, how's it going? I'd be like, oh, I'm so annoyed. Right?

<00:28:26> Kayla Levin: Mm-hmm.

<00:28:27> Dr Aimee Baron: We all could use people just checking in and telling us that they love us, right?

<00:28:32> Dr Aimee Baron: That's, that's for all of us. But especially, look, if, if you haven't seen your friend in a while, if you know she hasn't shown up to shul, if you know she hasn't come for pickup, if she hasn't seen to show up in general for things, you know, the right thing to do is. Not show up at her doorstep and make her let you in.

<00:28:54> Dr Aimee Baron: That is definitely not the right thing to do. The right thing to do is to send her a message, text her or call her whether she picks up the phone or not. That's her choice, but. The onus on you is to reach out and to say, Hey, I'm thinking about you. I love you. What's going on? You know, I just made this extra pot of soup.

<00:29:20> Dr Aimee Baron: Like, you know, I'm dropping some off to you, or I know that you love tulips and I saw their in season, so I'm just gonna drop them. Like I saw a bouquet, I picked up. It just made me happy. I thought it would make you happy too, right? Like these little things of you're not making the person. Do anything for you or do anything with you, but what you're doing is you're just showing them that you care about them in a gentle, soft way.

<00:29:49> Dr Aimee Baron: And if they're ready, then they'll reach back out to you and they'll tell you how much they appreciate it, and maybe they'll even wanna have coffee with you. But maybe not. And you have to be. You have to be ready for that too. But the goal here is to remind people when they're in that deep, dark place, that there are people that love them and people that care about them.

<00:30:14> Dr Aimee Baron: And any way that you can do that and show that would be amazing and wonderful.

<00:30:21> What is secondary infertility? ---

<00:30:21> Kayla Levin: Yeah, that's beautiful. Um, I was wondering if you would speak a little bit about, cause we, we, we covered miscarriage and that it's more common than people think. I think another thing that is often, um, a surprise people is secondary infertility. You spoke about this a little bit with your own personal story, but can you just share a little bit about what that is?

<00:30:44> Kayla Levin: Um, you know, the person who's experiencing it doesn't need to be the educator as well.

<00:30:51> Dr Aimee Baron: Definitely, definitely. Um, you know, I, I, I don't like to talk about the, these, you know, what I call the pain Olympics of like, you know, who has it worse, right? Oh, no, I have it worse and no, I have it worse. And I think sometimes this idea of primary versus secondary infertility. You know, people, people sort of have different, like, like they set up camp in each, in the, on each side.

<00:31:18> Dr Aimee Baron: Like the people with primary infertility who don't have any children, they feel all the time that ch this, they're on the outside looking in and they can't even begin to understand and know what a life is like with a child. And so they just feel so distant from everything. And then there are the, those who are dealing with secondary infertility, And, and the definition of secondary infertility just for your audience is someone who already has a child or any number of children could be 1, 2, 10 children for that matter, but is trying to get pregnant with that next child and unable to do it.

<00:32:02> Dr Aimee Baron: So the person who has 10 children who is desperately longing for the 11th. Has secondary infertility. The person who has one child who is desperately longing for the second, that person also has secondary infertility. So I just, sometimes people say to me, well, they already have lots of kids. So it's not really infertility, actually it is, it's secondary infertility.

<00:32:26> Dr Aimee Baron: So the, the issue, why do people who already have children, why is there any kind of pain there? The pain is there because everybody has forgotten about them. It's exactly for what I was just describing. It's the, they already have kids. What's their problem? Why do they feel like they're in pain? They're not in pain.

<00:32:49> Dr Aimee Baron: They already have, it's, it's fine for them and it's not, and it's not These people they know exactly. What it's like to have a child. And I'm not gonna say that the longing is worse because it's not, it's just different. Um, and, and the other piece of secondary infertility is that everybody else becomes involved On some level it's the younger children or the other children in the family that are saying, When are you gonna give me a little sister or a brother?

<00:33:23> Dr Aimee Baron: Or it's the neighbors or the friends that are saying to the kids or saying to other people in the family, how come your new mommy doesn't have a baby? And my mommy has a baby already. So it's, it's not only the pain that is felt by the parents. That, and the parents specifically are dealing with the pain and primary infertility.

<00:33:42> Dr Aimee Baron: But in secondary infertility, it's often the children that are involved as well, and the children feel that pain too. Um, so the pain is painful and it's different. Um, and we as a community, because we see this family that has children or has a child, we think that they've got it solved. If they, you know, were struggling to begin with or we just think that everything is fine because they already have kids and okay, so maybe they're not having anymore, or maybe they decided to take a break.

<00:34:19> Dr Aimee Baron: Maybe there's some medical issue maybe.

<00:34:21> Kayla Levin: Mm-hmm.

<00:34:22> Dr Aimee Baron: Maybe may, maybe there are a million re million reasons why, and there are a million reasons why people take breaks in having kids. Or they purposely, you know, for medical reasons or otherwise can't have any more children. There's a segment of that, of those people who desperately want more kids,

<00:34:44> Kayla Levin: Mm-hmm.

<00:34:45> Dr Aimee Baron: who, for whatever reason, can't. Um, and it's really, really hard.

<00:34:52> Kayla Levin: Yeah, I think it's so important for people to know, you know, I think just like you're saying, the kids get involved. I think that, you know, people feel like it's safer to talk about it and are less likely to read cues because, well, you have kids so like, you know, whatever. Um, and so just knowing first of all that this is a thing.

<00:35:12> Kayla Levin: So that nobody should feel, cuz we're, we're very aware of the fact that this conversation goes two ways in, in one way. We are all community members and we are all friends and sisters and daughters, and we wanna be sensitive and able to show up for the people in our lives. On the other hand, most of the women listening to this have children or hope to have children.

<00:35:30> Kayla Levin: And it's already a lot to, we don't need to add being blindsided by not even knowing that there's such a thing. Um, and so, Hopefully not one more woman will experience this, but since that probably will happen, we want the information out there.

<00:35:49> The question we all need to stop asking ---

<00:35:49> Dr Aimee Baron: Exactly, and, and I'll, you know, I, I'll, I'll say one thing, which I think is really important, and if, if, you know, if this is the only takeaway that anyone has from this conversation, let it be this. I think, you know, we, as I. People who like to, you know, stand around and, and, and chat with people. Whether we're at a simoa, whether we're at a kiddish, whether we're in a restaurant, whether we're on vacation and seeing someone we haven't seen in years, like right, we're always like, I e everybody knows each other or we're, you know, one degree of separation from everyone else.

<00:36:22> Dr Aimee Baron: Right? And so, Anytime you see someone, you meet someone new, there's this constant like back and forth of information, right? It's, oh, hi, how are you? Where do you live? Oh, you're related to this one. Oh, you're related to that one. Great. So who's your husband? Oh, what does he do? Oh, how many kids do you have?

<00:36:38> Dr Aimee Baron: Oh, okay. So now I'm stopping. How many kids do you have? Okay, so. If this is the only thing you take away from this conversation, I'm begging you, please erase the question. How many kids do you have from your conversations? I'm gonna give you something else to say. I promise it's gonna be just as good.

<00:37:02> Dr Aimee Baron: You're gonna get all the information, but. I wanna tell you why the question, how many kids you ha do you have, why that's so damaging or painful? And I'm even gonna add a little corollary to it. You know, a lot of times in our communities we can tell like if someone is married or if someone is not married, just based on their hair covering.

<00:37:24> Dr Aimee Baron: Okay. Sometimes, you know, new shales nowadays, it's sometimes hard to tell. Let's just call it what it is. So the, these questions about status and these questions about, about children I think are really, can be really painful. Are you married? When did you get married? How many children do you have? Because what.

<00:37:49> Dr Aimee Baron: That those questions are asking is they're asking specifically for information about fertility. They're asking, oh, you've been married for X number of years. Oh, and how old are your children? How many children do you have? Oh, you have a child who is eight and six, and you've been married for 14 years. Oh, or you've been married for five years and you don't have children yet, or, oh, how old are you?

<00:38:21> Dr Aimee Baron: You are 35. You are not married. Oh, right. Okay. So why is that painful? Number one, if you're single? I don't have to tell you. All of us know when we were single. When we were in that parsha about when people used to ask and the constant Amir was bayou, they were very, very painful. So that's why that's painful.

<00:38:47> Dr Aimee Baron: But what if you're meeting someone and they, you know, were engaged and they had a broken engagement? What if they got to, were married and then were recently divorced? What if someone, God forbid if they were married and then their husband or their wife, Was killed or died from a terrible illness. There are a million reasons why asking if someone is married or not married or what their status is could be painful to someone.

<00:39:16> Dr Aimee Baron: In addition, how many children do you have? How old are your children? Then you're immediately calculating in their head, oh, how many years were they married? Oh, I wonder if they had trouble. Oh, that's so interesting. They didn't have kids. Oh, it's so interesting. They have this spacing. Oh, that's. It's none of anybody's business.

<00:39:35> Dr Aimee Baron: What if someone had infertility? What if they didn't? What if someone had multiple miscarriages, had a stillbirth? What if, God forbid, one of their babies died? What if they had a baby who was born, who was born, um, as immunity, who was born preterm, and then the baby died? What if the baby died of sids? What if somebody had cancer?

<00:39:55> Dr Aimee Baron: What if somebody drowned? I could go on and on and on and on. What if people are taking a break because they're having medical difficulties or mental health difficulties or financial difficulties and on and on and on. Okay. I've told you all of the terrible things that happen or can happen about terrible things that people think and, and the things that you might be making them feel when you ask this kind of a question.

<00:40:27> The question we should ask ---

<00:40:27> Dr Aimee Baron: And so, I'm gonna give you another question, and it's not really a question, even it's actually a statement. It's, hi, how are you? So nice to meet you. Where do you live? Tell me about your family,

<00:40:40> Kayla Levin: Mm-hmm.

<00:40:41> Dr Aimee Baron: period. Tell me about your family. For someone who's single, they can tell you about their family. For someone who is widowed or a widower, They can tell you about their family.

<00:40:56> Dr Aimee Baron: For someone who has no children, they can tell you about their family. For someone who do does have children, they can tell you about their family. When you ask someone, when you say, tell me about your family, you are giving them the opportunity to share with you what they want as opposed to you pulling information out of them because it's what you want.

<00:41:23> Dr Aimee Baron: What if that day someone doesn't wanna tell you that they lost a baby to cancer? They're not in the mood. It's too painful for them. They don't have to share it with you. It's okay because you're giving them the choice as to what they share with you.

<00:41:42> Kayla Levin: and I think everyone it, not necessarily in this scenario, but just like you said with dating, like everyone's been on the other side of this conversation in some context. And I know I've experienced it, so I'm sure other people have too, where someone asked such a directed question and you gave the answer and then you felt so gross about it.

<00:42:00> Kayla Levin: Right. Because we're wired to, to, we're, we're wired to be social creatures and it's not easy and add on socialization. It's not easy for most of us to respond to a question like that with, I'd rather not say.

<00:42:15> Dr Aimee Baron: Great.

<00:42:15> Kayla Levin: And so, you know, even if it seems like the conversation goes very smoothly, It doesn't mean that that other person isn't left of a little bit of a vulnerability hangover of like, I didn't really wanna share that information.

<00:42:27> Kayla Levin: I, I do wanna say one thing. Cause I, I'm, I, I'm sure that there are people who are listening who are thinking this, so I, I wanna make sure to, to clarify this is relevant. Even if you're asking these questions and you're not being ata, you're not trying to figure it out. Right? Because I know there are people who, who, who, who.

<00:42:49> Kayla Levin: Operate that way kind of naturally and, and that's just their nature and that's just their own thing to work on. And there's people who really are kind of oblivious and they're just making small talk and they just stumble and to ask questions. And it doesn't really matter whether you are trying to pull out information to figure out their family spacing X, Y, and Z.

<00:43:06> Kayla Levin: What matters is that, the way I would think of it is they probably have been asked by that person that way. With that person who feels that they have a right to this information or they, they have a right or they, they're just curious and they wanna know. And so how would they know that you're not doing the same thing?

<00:43:23> Kayla Levin: And, and I think what you're saying, even more importantly, doesn't even matter about you. It matters about we don't know what we're bringing up for another person. And it's really interesting to be bringing this into this particular podcast because so much of what we do is on the other side of the line, it's dealing with how do I as a person, deal with someone else who doesn't have healthy boundaries?

<00:43:41> Kayla Levin: And that's a completely separate conversation. Right. What's the work that I can do for myself when someone else is pushing me or someone else is, is triggering me or whatever. And there, there's so much that can be done, but it never invalidates the importance of us. How do we wanna show up?

<00:43:59> Dr Aimee Baron: Great.

<00:43:59> Kayla Levin: And, and for most of us, sensitive is in there, right?

<00:44:03> Kayla Levin: And we all probably have a slightly different flavor of what sensitivity looks like to us. But I think that, especially in this area where. As we said, it can be very private. It can be, it, it's not, you know, there, there are more and more people going out and speaking about it, but I, I think it's a wonderful thing for people to follow you if they're on LinkedIn, if they're on Instagram, if they're on Facebook, any of these platforms, the podcast, even if, even like, you know, if it's, if it's heavy for you, maybe even just to give yourself like a month, you know?

<00:44:37> Kayla Levin: And, and I've never felt like it's like too much and I can't follow, but. You know, just, just as a, a awareness building exercise, because this is something that people are experiencing all, all around us, but, but not verbally. They're not gonna come out and talk about it. They're not gonna be, they're not gonna be announcing it at Kish.

<00:44:56> Kayla Levin: And so this can sort of just bring it into our awareness by just hearing these very personal stories, these personal situations. Um, yeah, I just wanted to make sure to, to mention that.

<00:45:09> It's ok to drop in and drop out ---

<00:45:09> Dr Aimee Baron: Yeah, I, I, and I, I have people who tell me all the time that they, they drop in and drop out of our work. They don't, they don't stay because sometimes it's too heavy for them. And I totally get that. I, I live in heaviness all day long, every single day. But that's the work that I do. I don't expect people to want heaviness as part of their daily existence.

<00:45:37> Dr Aimee Baron: Who would want that? Right? But it's important that people know that there are those that are out there that are struggling and that are suffering, and they are living with pain in their very daily existence. There are really tangible things that each of us can do to actually make a material difference in people's lives.

<00:46:03> Dr Aimee Baron: You know, we're I, I, I spoke about one sentence. It's one sentence. Changing the way you communicate with people. It's going from, you know, how many kids do you have to tell me about your family? It's one sentence. That's it. You can do everything else. Go to all the things, talk to all the people, do all the, like, there, there, nobody's saying that you can't do that, or it's the just the text or just the phone call of, Hey, I'm thinking about you.

<00:46:31> Dr Aimee Baron: It's one sentence. Oftentimes it's just one sentence that can really change people's lives. And that's, at the end of the day, that's what all of us want, right? We want to be seen, we want to be heard. We want to be held. We want, we want to feel less alone in this terrible isolation. And hopefully like with the work that I'm doing, with the work that we are doing as an organization, you know, What is the saying?

<00:47:03> Dr Aimee Baron: It's, it's, you know, if you change one person, you change the world. I, that's, that's what we're hoping. That's what we're hoping.

<00:47:10> Kayla Levin: Well, I think this conversation was a really, you know, a powerful way for us to take some steps in that way. And I, I know that this is an audience that is just super growth oriented and super tuned in and, and wants to, to learn and to show up for each other in the best way possible. So I'm so grateful that you took the time and shared all this with us.

<00:47:28> Kayla Levin: Thank you.

<00:47:29> Dr Aimee Baron: Thank you.

<00:47:30> Kayla Levin: Any final thoughts you wanna leave us with?

<00:47:34> Dr Aimee Baron: Um,

<00:47:35> Kayla Levin: Not to put you on the spot.

<00:47:36> Dr Aimee Baron: yeah, no, I, I, I think the, the,

<00:47:40> A final thought, it's ok to make mistakes ---

<00:47:40> Dr Aimee Baron: the final thought that I would leave your audience with is it is much better for each of you to try and maybe put your foot in your mouth, but then apologize then to not try at all, like, I, as someone who, I've been doing this work for many years already, and I've lived through many years of this experience, even I, as the expert, I make mistakes.

<00:48:12> Dr Aimee Baron: Sometimes. I say things that I shouldn't say. I, I, they come out of my mouth and I'm, I'm like, I kick myself. I'm like, I can't believe I did that. Even I do it. But the important thing is I immediately, or when I realize it a couple hours later, cuz that happened to me recently, um, I immediately go back and say, oh my goodness, I'm so sorry.

<00:48:33> Dr Aimee Baron: I, I can't believe I did that. Please forgive me. You know, I, here's the way I would've said it differently. Here's what I would've done differently. And then continue on and engaging with this person who desperately needs your support. Like, don't be afraid people. Feel isolated and they need human contact and they need you.

<00:48:56> Dr Aimee Baron: But I think often people are just afraid that they're gonna do the wrong thing and that it's gonna like, they're just too afraid. It's okay. Like, look, listen to this conversation. You are here now. You have two other practical things that you can do, you can walk away with to make it a little bit easier. You are not going to be perfect. You are going to make mistakes too. It's okay. Just keep showing up for your person. Just keep trying to be there in the best way. You know how, but also being humble and saying, I'm not sure if I got this right. I might have gotten this really wrong, but I want you to know that I love you and I care about you, and I'll do anything for you.

<00:49:36> Dr Aimee Baron: I don't be afraid. Don't not show up.

<00:49:41> Kayla Levin: Yeah. Amazing. I'm so glad you, you ended with that. Cause I think it's a hundred percent people can get so nervous and then totally drop the ball and that undermines all of that. Well, thank you so much for coming on. All right. We're gonna make sure to include everything in the show notes so that anyone who wants to, to follow your work, to reach out to.

<00:50:00> Kayla Levin: And as you said there, there are ways for people to get support beyond. Can you mind just taking like one second to just describe that for. Those who are looking for support.

<00:50:10> Dr Aimee Baron: Sure. So, um, beyond, And the work that we do on, you know, these different social platforms. We also run peer-to-peer support groups, um, virtual support groups on, um, six different topics. We also offer personalized one-on-one support, but we're one of, you know, 13 organizations in the United States, and there are many more worldwide.

<00:50:35> Dr Aimee Baron: Each of these organizations and you can access them through our website. We have a resource page. Each of these organizations also offers their own support groups and specific, specific support in many of these different areas. Reach out to them. Don't be afraid. We are all here to help you. All of us.

<00:50:56> Kayla Levin: Okay, so we'll get that in show notes as well. Thank you so much and thank you for all the amazing work that you're doing.

<00:51:03> Dr Aimee Baron: Thank you.

<00:51:04> Kayla Levin: Hey there. If you know a newlywed or you are one, we have a wedding gift for you. Go to kaylalevin.com/newlywed to get access to my best selling course. First Year Married. You have got to be in your first six months, so make sure you don't wait. And if you've been married longer than that, but you're looking for some more support or this stuff is just super fun for you.

<00:51:24> Kayla Levin: I'd love to have you join me inside of my membership community, how to Glow. It's for women looking for a fresh take on relationship development. Join us for live coaching calls, signature classes, and anonymous q and a.

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