Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The dollars & cents of it all

MM and I recently gathered our documentation to prepare our 2009 tax returns and as part of that process, I had to add up all the money we spent on fertility treatments last year. We spent:
  • $1324.53 on acupuncture and herbs
  • $1250 in co-pays to our RE's office
  • $975.53 on fertility medications
For a grand total of $3550.06. (I know that this estimate is conservative because I could not locate the receipts for some of our visits and could not get the information from the RE's office because they changed computer billing systems during the year.)

I realize that this is a drop in the bucket compared to what one IVF cycle would cost--not to mention the cost of actually having a child--and I am grateful that we had insurance which covered a portion of our IUI cycles and drugs. But I was still a little disturbed to think about the other things we could have done with over $3500. We could have taken another week-long trip to Maui, to cite one example. $3550.06 would have put a pretty big dent in the trip to Europe that we would love to take some time soon. I could've put it in my 401(k) or in my nephew's college savings account.

Thinking of another comparison, I would lay bets that this amount exceeds the total amount I paid for contraception prior to TTC. I only used birth control pills and condoms, and I never paid more than $20/month for birth control pills (often less) and rarely bought my own condoms (I left that to my respective partners, figuring "if you wanna play, you gotta pay"). I wasn't on the pill 100% of the time either, only times when I was sexually active. I would have had to take nearly 15 years of birth control pills at $20/month to exceed $3550.06.

Seeing these numbers in black and white and knowing that they got us no closer to our goal of having a child makes me even more glad that we stopped pursuing treatment. All this $3550.06 got us was frustration, heightened disappointment when my period arrived every cycle in spite of the money we'd spent, and stress. . . . oh, and hot flashes and mood swings for me.

On the other hand, had any of our treatments been successful and actually resulted in a living child of our own, I'm sure I would consider this money well spent. In fact, in the big picture, I'd probably consider it a small price to pay to be a parent.


  1. I know what you mean. Our medical deductions for 09 are over 13 g's, including insurance premiums. I wish I were kidding. And we didn't even do IVF. Not all of it was for IF tx's but still! Holy moly!

  2. It's unfair how costly fertility treatment can be, especially when they don't always work.

    I hope this does not sound trite, but I really feel like good things are in store for you.

    Please know you've got people who may not know you but care.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.