Infertility... to tell or not to tell?

Issues with conceiving that much craved for child can be extremely stressful and impact the person, their relationships, all aspects of their lives and their sense of self. Seeing people in the supermarket or out and about with children, or hearing a baby cry, going to family gathering or events and seeing other parents and children can be very distressing. The guilt can feel conflicting, not wanting to attend friend or family events but feeling that you have to or else lie. The hurt of not being invited to gatherings because people say 'well they won't want to come they don't have children'. Comments stated like 'you wouldn't understand you don't have children' or 'lucky you, you can go wherever you like and do whatever you want because you don't have children' can be so hurtful.


The natural drive to conceive is innate in humans, some people choose not to have children for many reason and others don't feel that need within. For others, the desire is so strong that it feels like they can't breath. The thoughts like 'is it my fault..?' 'if I hadn't done this.. then maybe...' 'why me?' 'what's wrong with me' can be consuming and take over all your waking time and impact on sleep.


You are not alone. 1 in 5 couples have difficultly conceiving. That means that out of every 5 people you meet one of them has had a similar experience to you.


Do I tell and who do I tell? That is a very individual decision. The research indicates that having a strong support network is vital in moving through the physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual impact of infertility. That does not mean that you need to go and tell everyone what is happening in your life. What it indicates is that picking the support network you need is important. That might be a work colleague, a friend, a family member or your therapist.


Being in a supportive relationship and sharing the experience with your partner can be a beautiful way to connect further. However, we need to remember that your experience and your partners are similar but not the same. You both have different coping strategies that may or may not align. What you and your partner go through are different physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually. Therefore, the most important consideration for couples is communication with one another, holding space for the other to express and feel what they need to with you.


Therapy can help you and your partner move through the decisions on your journey to conceiving your child. The space is held for you both to express and be supported and to develop coping strategies for you to move through the challenges you are facing.


Take care and go well,


Miriam



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