After 2 years of us trying and a further 2 years of NHS waiting lists and preliminary screening tests, my partner and I were quite cruelly told we could not conceive due to my partners 3 separate negative sperm sample results. The NHS refused to refer my partner to the urologist for internal examination to find out what the problem was because my BMI was too high. Although there is no reproductive problems with me (I already have a son from a previous partner), I was told I needed to lose 5 stones to meet their criteria for my partners tests and any further treatment. The NHS process, although I’m sure it’s not intended; was extremely cruel and insensitive on many counts. I could go on ranting about how bad our treatment was but I don’t feel that helps anything.
So, I set about trying to lose 5 stones feeling depressed and useless with my weight going up and down as it always has. I joined Slimming World, did Fitness for Life classes, and increased my exercise whilst working in my full time demanding job, being a mother to my son and wife to my partner who was also depressed, embarrassed and feeling useless thinking that he had let us all down. They were hard days and put a big strain on our relationship with us both feeling it was our fault. It gets better…
One evening I flicked the tv over and came across a channel 4 documentary called ‘Inside Harley Street’ which gave public accounts of private medical services including IVF. I began to research the private sector costs and soon found out that again my BMI was too high for any treatment across the UK. This made me think; maybe I could travel abroad for treatment? I began to research IVF clinics outside the UK and contacted a few different clinics for advice and ultimately choose New Life because of their high success rates, confidence in service, friendly approach and internet chat sites talking about how good they were.
I emailed New Life and they got back to me the same day with no obligation dates and times to have a free consultation with the IVF doctor via Skype or telephone. Our initial consultation was with Doctor Dimitiros Dovas (Obstetrician Gynaecologist) and Chrysa Karakosta (Clinical Embryologist) who then also went on to treat us from start to finish. Chrysa was a constant rock throughout all of our treatment from initial Skype consultation to every time we were at the clinic and Chrysa even gave me her personal mobile number for any out of hours concerns or questions we had during treatment stages. The care and support we received from New Life was second to none. Their whole team is fantastic. Everyone speaks fluent English and couldn’t do enough to help us and make our treatment as easy and stress free as possible.
My partner and I used buses to travel to and from the clinic so we were often early for visits but we never had to wait until our appointment time. There was no waiting around in reception, facilities were exceptionally clean, air conditioned and open and airy. Whilst in clinic we saw many different international patients from Australia, UK, and Greece. The IVF process undoubtedly creates concerns and worries for anyone, furthermore to be treated in a different country away from home comforts can add a layer of apprehension. My partner and I made a calculated leap of faith to go to Greece and receive the treatment from New Life. This is one leap we are both so absolutely, 100% advocating for. I cannot begin to explain how welcoming the Greek people are and what a fantastic holiday we had at the same time as receiving the treatment! The staff made us free respected and understood.
I am now 3 months pregnant with twins! My mum is frantically knitting double fast and our biggest concern is fitting our expanding family into our small terraced house. My partner and I can confidently say that even if I was 5 stones lighter and the NHS had offered us treatment, knowing what we know now; we would 100% pay to go back to New Life in Greece.
My partner and I are feel like we went through a really hard time where we couldn’t see a happy ending, thanks to New Life and only 3 weeks of treatment (and holiday!) we have come out the other end so happy with our family of 3 growing to a family of 5! We would both be more than happy to talk to anyone considering treatment with New Life to discuss our journey, treatment, hotels, transport, work, family, holiday sites etc. to help people achieve the pregnancy they dream of.
Thank you to all the staff that made our dreams possible for us.