It’s easy to ignore The Fat Little Demon (dark green, rotund, oily little fellow with horns – about the size of a garden gnome) when you’re busy. Easy to shut your ears to the toxic little ramblings that tell you the life you once knew is over. Easy to drown out his negative, spiky little warblings when you’re absorbed in a deadline, or a conversation over the water cooler about what will happen to the department when Barbara leaves.

I can mostly plug my ears to him when I’m reading a really good book, or am absorbed in a television programme about someone’s fight against extreme odds. Only, the very second I stop doing something, anything, he bats me over the head with his fat, oily little paw and shouts, loudly in my ear, “It ain’t ever going to happen for you, love,” before he draws deeply on his cigar rolled of sewer marinated leaves and expels foul-smelling air into my face.

The weekends are the worst – like this morning, I woke up with no alarm and before I’d even opened my eyes he was there, crouched on my forehead, “Oi,” he spat, “wake up. This ain’t ever gonna happen for you.” I kept my eyes closed, “So you keep telling me. The Good Witch of The Fertility Clinic thinks you’re wrong,” I said. He stamped once, hard, on my forehead, “Naive little girl. She’s just out to get your cash. Selling you expensive accupuncture treatments. She’s lying to you, she won’t look after you, tell you the truth, not like me. I’m the bestest friend you ever had. I’m here to tell you like it is. You’re fucked.”

I shook DH awake, “Can’t you hear him?” I said, desperately. Silence. “No,” he said “no, I can’t hear a thing.” Then I got frustrated and angry, “Why can’t you hear him? He’s speaking really loudly, he sounds like Del Boy from Only Fools and Horses for God’s Sake. Can’t you hear him say that it doesn’t matter how healthy you’ve tried to be these past few weeks, it’s not going to make your sperm better.”


“No,” he said “I can’t hear that. Remember what the fertility councillor said last week? This is all going to be fine.”

By now, I was sitting upright in bed and The Fat Demon had hobbled onto on my lap. I jabbed a finger at his gnarled little body and shouted at DH, “You don’t understand. Why won’t you listen to me? He’s saying we’re in for a lifetime of pain, that we don’t know the half of it yet, that wait until we have to face the fact that we’ll never have our own children. He says it’s going to be hard this week, when my best friend’s baby is born. He says I’d better get ready for that, because envy is toxic. No fertility councillor is going to be able to help me with that and he’s here to tell me it’s going to get hard and the sooner I realise that, the better.”

Then I was crying.

“Sounds like this demon needs a slap in the face,” says DH. I turn to the demon, “He thinks you need a slap in the face,” and the demon replies, “tell him I’m not leaving until he admits that I’m here.” I turn to DH, “He says he’s not leaving until you admit that he’s here.” DH sighs, “Well he’ll be waiting a long time then.”

I shout a bit, quite a lot actually, about how un-chivalrous it is of him not to rescue me from the claws of an ugly, fat, homonculous. But he refuses to do it. He refuses to save me.