CHARLOTTE, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) - Infertility is a topic many couples want to keep private, but if you're struggling to grow your family you are not alone. It’s actually a common medical condition. One Charlotte couple shared their story with FOX 46, and let us meet the ‘rainbow baby’ they are grateful for.
Little Ellie is a blessing to the Bassett family-- all six pounds and six ounces. Her parents, Mike and Loren, have fallen in love with her.
“I haven't stopped smiling since she was born,” Mike said.
Bringing Ellie into the world was a lot harder than they ever imagined. The college sweethearts got married and dreamed of growing their family.
After a year of trying on their own, they turned to Carolinas Medical Center Women's Institute for help and started with intrauterine insemination (IUI).
Doctor Michelle Matthews is the medical director at the institute.
“Many couples struggle with infertility. Up to one in five may have trouble conceiving,” Matthews said.
It’s far more common than many people think, Matthews says.
“It’s constantly a rollercoaster,” Loren says. “It took us a little bit longer to get there, but we wouldn’t trade it for anything.
She underwent five unsuccessful rounds of IUI. The sixth time, she was expecting twins, but heartache came 16 weeks into the pregnancy when she had a miscarriage.
“At first it was really hard for me to understand how to continue to grieve and understand the loss of the twins and also how to welcome new life into the world,” Loren said.
The Bassetts moved on to in-vitro fertilization (IVF) where the sperm and egg are combined outside the body.
“They are not alone. It's not the easiest road, but many couples are successful,” said Matthews.
Success rates for IVF continue to increase. Matthews says there is still a misconception about the procedure.
“[There’s] a stigma to it. It’s associated with multiple pregnancies, like twins or triplets. Most of that is outdated. They really should only have one embryo transferred,” she says.
The Bassetts went forward with the IVF, and eventually conceived Ellie.
“It’s amazing the end result. Just stay patient, stay kind and strong. I needed her as much as she needed me. You're both in it together,” Mike advises other couples trying to conceive.
Ellie was born exactly a year to the day they found out the twins no longer had heartbeats. She’s a true gift the Bassetts cherish.
“It was a blessing in disguise. Now we know the twins are okay and they are a little part of Ellie.”