Medical Expenses and Fertility Treatments

For: Benjamin and Stacy Littner
Organizer: Stacy Littner
$1,158
of $10,000 goal.
Raised by 27 donors
11% Complete
This fundraiser is closed. Thank you for your support!

The Story

Ben and I (Stacy) have been together for over 4 years now. We got married October 7, 2012 and like most couples, planned on having a family. We have a unique and strong relationship and want nothing more than to join the journey of parenthood together.

We have been on quite a journey since December of 2013, when we were first diagnosed with infertility. The first specialist we saw really had us down and feeling hopeless. I won't dwell on the negatives of that experience, but rather, I will tell you it is what brought me to start doing a TON of research of my own. I had been told by several doctors that they believe I had endometriosis. Neither told me what it was or how it could be affecting my life and my fertility. Turns out, it affects a lot!! I began to research endometriosis (endo for short) and talking to people in support groups online that have it as well. I learned so much that no doctors ever bothered to explain to me. After a long, through search of endo specialists, I found one that has an AMAZING reputation in Milwaukee, WI. I met with her last week and she had a lot to tell me. 

1. There's no way to 100% diagnose endo without surgery by she is extremely confident that I have it based on my history, symptoms, and tests thus far.

2. Removing endo with excision surgery not only improves quality of life because symptoms diminish after, but it also improves fertility!!

This specialist is also an RE (Reproductive Endocrinologist, which is commonly referred to as a fertility specialist). She was a bit appalled that IVF was suggested for us without having the "full picture" of what's going on with my body. 

I will be having excision surgery on June 24th. At our follow up appointment, the RE will give us her suggestion (based on what she finds) as to what step to take next towards having a baby. It is possible that she will still recommend IVF but the surgery will improve the chances of IVF being successful. She may recommend something more conservative. But regardless of what she suggests, all fertility treatments, along with medications, cost hundreds to thousands of dollars.

Luckily, our insurance is covering my surgery. Although it will improve my fertility, it is a medical condition, therefore they cannot deny coverage. Anything after that will not be covered. Even with coverage, there will be a great amount of out-of-pocket expense. So, fundraiser is still on! If you can afford to contribute, every tiny little bit helps. We, of course, are also working and saving but with me having to be out of work for a while, it is hard to put much aside right now. If you cannot afford to donate money  but still wish to help, I am having a fundraising garage sale around the end of summer. If you have any items sitting around your home that you would be willing to donate to us, we would also greatly appreciate that! So far we have some really great items from some really great friends!

So that's pretty much where we are right now. I will post an update in about a month, after surgery. In the meantime, feel free to contact me if you want to talk about this or have any questions. I've become very comfortable discussing our journey. It took some time, but I know we have nothing to be embarassed or ashamed of and there are so many people who go through this alone, in silence. Raising awareness of infertiltiy as well as endometriosis has become a very important part of my life! 

We thank you for even taking the time to read this and thank you in advance for any type of donation you may be considering.

Stacy (and Ben)


Fundraiser Updates

Posted on July 9, 2014

Posted on July 9, 2014

Surgery was very successful! There was a ton of endometriosis covering my reproductive and digestive organs, but almost all of it has been removed! Our RE believes this was a HUGE problem in our trying to conceive. And more good news.... Ben's fertility is great! So we're only working with problems on my side (which is much better than couples who have problems with both)! 

I am recovering from surgery right now but our RE believes we should not need IVF!!!! However, your donations have NOT gone to waste. We will be doing IUI which is a form of insemination. It is much cheaper than IVF. Approximately $400-$1000 per cycle. 

We are going in this week to have Ben's sperm frozen because he will be soon having back surgery and will need time of his own for recovery before being able to try naturally again. Then, depending on how my body heals, we should be trying our first IUI in the next month or two!!! 

We can't thank you all enough for your unconditional love and support thus far. It's already been quite a journey and nothing is guarnateed, so we know we could be in for a much longer journey. BUT, we've been given hope again, which is the next best feeling to an actual pregnancy!! 

I will keep you posted as we move forward with IUI and keep your fingers crossed that we only need one! 

xoxo
Stacy 

Posted on May 14, 2014

Posted on May 14, 2014

It's been quite a while since I've given an update and the reason is that I've been spending endless hours doing research and talking to professionals, advocates, and other people struggling with infertility. 

Great things have come of this! One thing I found out is that endometriosis (which is a very serious condition that not only causes a great deal of pain and illness) is not only treatable but can INCREASE fertility! Excision surgery is a very difficult surgery, thus many doctors do not take the time to learn and practice it. However, for the doctors who do, well they change lives. After much research I have found that one of the most reputable doctors is only 60 miles away, in Milwaukee, WI!

Yesterday, I had a phone consultation appointment with a nurse from the office. In the hour that we spoke, she gave me more hope than I've had since first diagnosed. My appointment with the surgeon is next Wednesday, and while I'm very nervous, I'm also very excited to take the next step in this journey. I don't want to say too much yet, until I meet with the doctor and hear exactly what she has to say about our situation, but one thing I do know - getting the endometriosis will not only give me better quality of life, but it will increase my chances of getting pregnant. It's still VERY LIKELY that we will need IVF, however, going through IVF does not guarantee pregnancy. Having the endometriosis makes the chances of the IVF working much, much greater.

So, we are continuing to push forward, researching, applying for grants, saving our own money and seeking help from anyone who is willing and able to donate. Remember, EVERY LITTLE BIT HELPS! 

I am also looking for donations of any items that could be sold in a garage sale fundraiser that I am planning for the fall. If you have anything you'd like to donate, please email me directly at [email protected]

Thank you for the continued love and support. This is the hardest journey I hope I ever have to go through but I am so thankful that I have an amazing husband and partner holding my hand as we go through it together. Once baby Littner is here, he/she will ALWAYS KNOW how WANTED he/she is!

xoxo,
Stacy

Posted on May 14, 2014

Posted on May 14, 2014

It's been quite a while since I've given an update and the reason is that I've been spending endless hours doing research and talking to professionals, advocates, and other people struggling with infertility. 

Great things have come of this! One thing I found out is that endometriosis (which is a very serious condition that not only causes a great deal of pain and illness) is not only treatable but can INCREASE fertility! Excision surgery is a very difficult surgery, thus many doctors do not take the time to learn and practice it. However, for the doctors who do, well they change lives. After much research I have found that one of the most reputable doctors is only 60 miles away, in Milwaukee, WI!

Yesterday, I had a phone consultation appointment with a nurse from the office. In the hour that we spoke, she gave me more hope than I've had since first diagnosed. My appointment with the surgeon is next Wednesday, and while I'm very nervous, I'm also very excited to take the next step in this journey. I don't want to say too much yet, until I meet with the doctor and hear exactly what she has to say about our situation, but one thing I do know - getting the endometriosis will not only give me better quality of life, but it will increase my chances of getting pregnant. It's still VERY LIKELY that we will need IVF, however, going through IVF does not guarantee pregnancy. Having the endometriosis makes the chances of the IVF working much, much greater.

So, we are continuing to push forward, researching, applying for grants, saving our own money and seeking help from anyone who is willing and able to donate. Remember, EVERY LITTLE BIT HELPS! 

I am also looking for donations of any items that could be sold in a garage sale fundraiser that I am planning for the fall. If you have anything you'd like to donate, please email me directly at [email protected]

Thank you for the continued love and support. This is the hardest journey I hope I ever have to go through but I am so thankful that I have an amazing husband and partner holding my hand as we go through it together. Once baby Littner is here, he/she will ALWAYS KNOW how WANTED he/she is!

xoxo,
Stacy

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