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Couple's fertility struggle complicates family vacation plans; their bedroom has no door.

Couple's fertility struggle complicates family vacation plans; their bedroom has no door.


"AITAH for giving an ultimatum on family vacation?"


My partner Ben (M34) and I (F35)have been dealing with unexplained infertility for 2 years, and it’s been physically, mentally, and emotionally devastating. We’ve seen a specialist for a year and have gone through 7 failed IUI procedures.

One worked but at first but then I almost immediately miscarried. After a year, our insurance finally approved IVF, which has a much higher success rate. We learned that we were approved in November and my doctor wanted to schedule the procedure during my next ovulation window in late December.

But we couldn’t do it because for the holidays, we rented a cabin with my mom (F60), my sister Margo (F32), and her partner Dana (F30). Maybe relevant: I did the research and found the cabin. Margo/Dana and Ben/I split the cost as a gift to Mom.

We were really disappointed that we’d have to push IVF a month but at least I’d get to see my family. Our doctor encouraged us to still have sex while I ovulate, just in case.

Mom and Margo know all about our journey (the three of us are very close and they’ve supported me through all of the heartbreak) and so I told them that Ben and I would need to sneak off for some privacy a few times at the cabin. They were all for it.

Well, Ben and I were the last to arrive at the cabin (we live several hours further away than everyone else) and 2 of the 3 bedrooms had been claimed. The unclaimed one had NO DOOR (there was no evidence on the website that one of the bedrooms wasn’t private).

So I pulled my mom and Margo aside and asked if one of them would switch rooms so that Ben and I could have privacy. Mom said that she’d already unpacked in hers and would rather not switch. And then Margo said that the no-door room was too cold for her but she thought I’d like it because I like to sleep cold.

Since this was a gift for mom, I begged Margo. I even volunteered to go buy her a space heater. She refused and suggested hanging a sheet over the doorway, or everyone else closing their doors so that they wouldn’t see/hear. Dana wanted to switch and tried to convince her.

So after talking this over with Ben privately I went back to my mom and sister and said something like “Ben and I aren’t willing to skip trying this month and we’re not comfortable trying in a non-private room, so if we can’t get a room with a door, we’ll be going back home to try.”

Finally Margo agreed to switch but then she was pretty hostile for a day and then cold for the rest of the trip. My mom, who likes to cover her ears and sing “LALALA” when Margo and I fight, keeps just begging us to make up. If it matters, Ben did run out and buy a space heater for Margo too.

The OP quickly returned with some more clarifications.

"Updates based on some common responses:"


It wasn’t actually an Airbnb. It was a private rental from a private company. We did contact them about the door and all they could do was apologize and offer a discount, which we took. It didn’t solve the immediate problem though.

For everyone saying that we should get it on regardless, or do it outside, in the bathroom, in the car, etc. Believe me, if we could, we would. But after so many years of this, we both have a lot of complicated feelings around baby-making.

Long story short, our baby-making needs to stay pretty vanilla in order for it to work. Our family building life outside of TTC is very healthy. And yes, we’re in individual and couples therapy.

For everyone saying that it was inappropriate from me to even tell them, well, I’m sorry that you’re not as close with your parents and siblings. I wasn’t like “hey, by the way, Ben and I are going off to make a baby.”

It was more like, “hey, by the way, I’ll be ovulating while we’re at the cabin and my doctor recommended we try to be intimate. So, Ben and I will need to excuse ourselves a few times while we’re away.” And they were like “cool!” So if you think I’m gross for telling them, okay, but that’s not what I asked for judgment on.

For everyone saying that we should’ve just stayed back at the cabin while everyone else was out, the plan was really for all of us just to stay at the cabin, exchange gifts, play board games, cook together, etc. A very homebody trip.

Here were the top rated comments from readers after hearing everything the OP had to say:


Honestly, if this was my family, I'm sure someone would have given up their room, but at the end of the day it seems ridiculous that you'd spoil a whole trip because you're not willing to have sex in the bathroom or something. [Context: We spent many months monitoring ovulation and having sex at undesirable times and locations, so at least have some idea how stressful it is.]


Your mom said she'd already unpacked but that ignores that when she arrived at the cabin, she made a choice to take one of the rooms with a door, knowing that one of the two couples that paid for the cabin would be in a room without a door.


YTA. The rest of the world does not have to kowtow to you. If you wanted a choice of rooms, you should have got there earlier. I read an interesting study the other day about the divorce rate for couples who undergo fertility treatments. It was quadruple the average. I suppose when you whole life revolves around getting pregnant, it can be quite detrimental to any relationship.


I'm sorry you're struggling with fertility issues, but that doesn't give you any extra rights on the family vacation. Especially when splitting the cost with your sister, she has a much right to privacy with her partner as you. YTA.


NTA - but as a mother, if my kids gifted me a trip, and I was solo, I would have taken the room with no door and found a way to block it with a curtain or something, and out of courtesy given the couples the privacy of a door! So, I’m going with your mom is an AH for a few reasons.


OP is NTA. Everyone saying YTA - Consider that she did reach out and give the heads up, getting the “yup we’re cool with this being an intention!”, before hand. Who is their right minds says that, knows they’re going to get at it, and leaves the person - who did the planning and got the go ahead - the room without a door?!

I get that waiting a month may seem like nothing, but dealing with infertility is a huge mental load and if them going off to try and make a baby a few times will reduce the anxiety and stress so they can be present for the trip, why is that awful?

Also, if they split the cost and got the approval to get jiggy, WHY is Margo more entitled to the room with a door when it was not listed as such? Obviously this would’ve been a conversation if that was listed. Add in the fact they planned, even if they didn’t want to bone, I still feel like the doored room is a reasonable request for the person who did the planning.

I am a lesbian and this is not about the sister being one. My partner and I would’ve moved rooms and just been like “can you maybe help get mom out of the cabin for a few hours so me and babe can have our own boning sesh in private at some point if we give you like an hour notice????”.

Would I be HAPPY? No, of course not. But I would’ve assumed when I got there anyway and just taken the room, maybe even been a goof like “if y’all get preggo here, you’re welcome! I took the room without the door so you could have privacy, I expect the baby to be named after me!” (Entirely as a joke, not literally) Sister isn’t TA either, but sounds like she’s got the younger sibling entitlement going on.

So, do you think the OP is justified in being upset that her family didn't make accomidations for HER family planning?

Sources: Reddit
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