Wearing our heart on our sleeve

Posted By Brandi Lytle & SK Reid  
21:00 PM


I met Brandi online! Meeting people online seems to be the norm in our shrinking global village, and I came across her beautiful work whilst doing research for my new book.

I was delighted to find a sister who knows the path.

By the same token, learning about Brandi’s story has been heartbreaking. There is something incredibly moving about her honesty and vulnerability which is at once disarming and yet also challenging. Her work as a blogger in Not So Mommy…for the Childless Not By Choice community asks of its readers to dig deep into the capacity for empathy, metaphorically choosing to stand alongside one who suffers rather than turning our back and looking the other way.

I am thrilled to be including Brandi’s story in my forthcoming book. Whilst there is heartbreak, her journey is also a testament to the Warrior Woman resilience that comes from walking a difficult path in life.

Here in this guest blog post, she shares with us a little of her story.




Brandi’s Story:  Childless Due to Infertility & More…

By: Brandi Lytle, of Not So Mommy…


How did my husband and I become childless not by choice?  Well, the short answer is because of infertility.  But honestly, our story is more complicated than that.  Yes, we suffer from severe infertility.  That is the physical reason we couldn’t have a biological child.  But there are other underlying issues within our story that led us to ultimately leading a childless not by choice life…


After seven failed IUIs, we began to research adoption.  One of the major deterrents to adoption was the cost, ranging from $10,000 to $50,000. We had already spent thousands of dollars on infertility treatments (which weren’t covered by insurance) and now, we were looking at tens of thousands more…  We just didn’t know where we would get these funds.  The last thing we wanted was to become financially destitute while adopting, then unable to properly care for our new child…  So, another reason we are childless is because adoption was cost prohibitive.


Ten years into our battle, my husband told me that he didn’t want to keep trying.  Although I was initially crushed, feeling that he didn’t want to have a baby with me, I now understand there was so much more to his request…


We had spent a decade of our life hoping and wishing and trying…  We’d spent a decade researching and crying and supporting one another…  A decade feeling that our life would begin when… When we got pregnant, when we had a baby, when we adopted a child…


And my husband was tired.  To be honest, so was I.  We were both completely emotionally drained.  Although I wanted to keep fighting, my hubby asked if I would pleaseaccept our life as it was rather than spend the next ten years like the last.  So, another reason we are childless is because I respected his request.


So, how did we become childless not by choice? Well, infertility started us down this path.  But ultimately, we ended up here because we supported each other in our joint decision that we could not afford adoption, and I chose to support my husband’s request to live our life as it was.


Some may think it sounds as if we are childless by choice.  While we did make some choices, those were out of necessity.  We are, in fact, childless notby choice.  We would have loved to get pregnant the old-fashioned way and have a little like so many others…


But that was not to be.  And we have accepted this.  Hopefully, by sharing our story, others will have a better understanding of this complicated journey.  Because anyone who is childless due to infertility has been through a physical, financial, and emotional battle.  Upon arriving at the point of trying to accept being childless, we are drained from a grueling journey.  What we childless really need is for others to listen without judgement, giving support, love, and understanding.


Brandi Lytle, founder and owner of Not So Mommy…and creator of the olive green Childless Not By Choice Awareness Ribbon, is a wife, dog mom, aunt, host mom, infertile woman.  She is living an imperfectly perfect life in South Carolina, USA with her husband, Dane, and fur baby, Maddie.  Brandi is redefining what momhood means to her and strives to focus on the bright sides of being childless, but not childfree.  Her hope is to inspire others to be their authentic selves and discover a Plan B that brings them joy!