The fertility journey can often have more lows than highs. For very good reasons, many couples often choose to not open up and let friends and family know that they are trying for a baby. Including others in your journey can add unwanted pressure as they check in with you to see if you have conceived. Worse still if they continually offer unsolicited advice and make frustrating statements like ‘you just need to relax, and it will happen’. There are also those who feel it’s ok to share your story around to everyone they know and then another relative is advising that ‘you just need to go on a holiday’.
The tricky thing is though, if you have decided to keep things only between you and your partner, you may be missing out on the adequate support that you need. Confiding only in your partner is putting a lot of pressure on that one person to solely provide all the essential love, understanding and support the fertility path requires. Your partner may also be struggling and feeling the weight of the fertility path. Often they are also requiring support themselves. Looking only to each other for bolstering can sometimes put more of a load on each other.
Gently expanding out to include a few other highly trustworthy friends or family members means there is a wider variety of listening and empathy skills when you need it. Perhaps your best friend or sister is the patient ear you need, when you want to discuss every single emotion and thought during the emotional roller coaster of times such as the anxious ‘two week wait’?
Reach out and find your best supporters and hold them close. With my history of recurrent miscarriage I realised the importance of this. I often recommend to my patients that they open up to a small and highly trustworthy inner circle. Choose supporters that you could see yourself calling through all the fertility highs and lows. Ones who don’t mind listening to you again and again. Ones that know there is nothing right to say except “I’m here for you”. Ones that would never in a million in years suggest “Stop thinking about it and it will happen!”
Seeking out professional help can also be a wise idea. The skillset of a professional counsellor or psychologist can make all the difference to your emotional wellbeing on this path.