Overcoming Fertility Challenges
Overcoming Fertility Challenges
Infertility is a marathon, it is not a sprint, this is why we need to have all the tips that we can use to overcome this challenge in our lives. If you are diagnosed with infertility it doesn’t mean that you can’t have children. True, infertility means trying for one year without success and many people have experienced it at one point in their lives. Some go on to have children without treatment and some would need treatment, but will eventually overcome infertility.
What we are trying to do is to give/highlight some tips on overcoming all the challenges that infertility can bring in the year 2020. Infertility comes with a lot of stress and it touches every aspect of a person’s life from the way they feel about themselves to the relationship with their partner and to their overall perspective on life and living. But you know what, there is hope and there is a treatment fit for everyone.
As overwhelming as your situation may seem at times, you need to learn ways to reduce anxiety that is involved. One thing we need to understand up-front is that infertility is an emotional rollercoaster, so it affects your emotions not because you are weak but because you feel overwhelmed. This is perfectly normal and this is the first thing you should understand. It is important that you acknowledge your feelings and understand that what you are experiencing is perfectly normal. Especially in an environment like ours where child bearing has a high premium.
For many couples, it has been a lifelong dream to be parents and suddenly their dream is being threatened by infertility. It can really be emotionally and physically draining and in this environment, we rarely take professional counselling. Everybody assumes that they are strong but infertility will test your strength. Therefore it is not a sign of weakness to talk to a therapist. If you have not been doing that you need somebody that you can talk to. That person might be your partner but sometimes you might need to take professional counselling. You should also be able to share your questions and fears.
Tips To Overcome Fertility Challenges
- Surround yourself with people who can answer your questions and this is why your clinic is so important. The people you talk to in your clinic are so important. The treatment of fertility is not wishful thinking. You need people who can answer your question and understand your fears and concerns. That is where professional help also comes in. Fertility groups are also useful, there are some groups of people like you that are going through the same thing as you. They can talk to you, understand you and where you are coming from. It is very important for you to take advantage of such groups. It is important for you to join peer groups but be careful also, like most things you need to understand the pedigree and professionalism of the people who are behind these peer groups.
- Allow yourself to cry sometimes and to be angry. Don’t try to repress your feelings of anger, guilt or sorrow. If you feel like crying, please do cry. If you feel like punching your pillow pls do that in the confines of your room. If you need to cry about the unfairness of another pregnancy or bad pregnancy go ahead. Don’t try to repress your feelings. Your feelings are absolutely normal, you don’t need to be ashamed about the toll infertility takes on your emotions. One thing you should note is that, once you see that it is getting beyond what you can cope with, please seek professional help.
- Allow yourself to breathe, please be sure to acknowledge and work through your grief and let it go. You see in this environment, the counselling we are used to is church counselling where the pastor has the answer to all things. In fertility or professional counselling it is not so, that is why some people become disappointed because it is not the kind of counseling they are used to. For instance, in church counselling, when you ask a question, your pastor has answers to it. But in professional counseling the counselor allows you to find a solution for yourself. Because you need to understand what your own situation is. What couple A will be experiencing might be different from couple B. Therefore it would be messed up if you are giving them the same solution. Most of the time, when you are doing counselling the solution comes from you, what the counsellor just does is to ask questions to understand the implications of what you are doing from treatment.
- It is also better if you can keep a journal, have a note where you can write your feelings. Write what you are going through. The good thing about keeping a journal is that it is always available and accessible. Write your feelings down if you need to and address it later, writing down your thoughts is always a good way to vent. Then if you feel like you need to talk to somebody about it later, you can always do that because one thing infertility does is make you feel like you are all alone. That is why, during this phase it is always advisable to stay connected to family and friends. It is important for you to stay connected with your loved ones. Even if they have never gone through infertility, you can educate them on how you want to be treated. Explain to them how certain remarks are insensitive even when they are unintentional, tell them about the way you want to be treated.
- You must learn to communicate with your partner. There is no doubt that infertility can take a toll on your relationship and create tension between the two of you. There are couples that infertility has made stronger and it can make you stronger if you learn how to cope with it. One thing you should never forget is that the two of you might not always be on the same page. Unless you intentionally bring yourself to the same page, because the two of you would respond differently to a crisis. Therefore, communication therefore is very important. Even if it means seeking counseling together to help you be on the same page. It is so important for you to be on the same page, because your partner is the closest person to you. This person understands what you are going through because he/she is also going through the same thing, so don’t separate yourselves. Don’t allow infertility to break you down.
- You also need to spend time together with your partner. Enjoy yourself together, it doesn’t have to be expensive. If you have to go to the movies, go to the movies. Don’t let infertility ruin your life. Whatever keeps you going is what you should do, if it is to go for walks, play, just do anything you can to spend time together. It is also important to protect your sex life. Don’t just have sex to make babies, enjoy yourselves when you can.
- Also, you must get informed. Knowledge is power and infertility comes with a lot of uncertainties about the future. Do your own research and present your situation and possible treatment options. For example, you must be able to know for your age what your success rate is. I often say infertility treatment is not wishful thinking. You can’t just come and tell me that you are 48 and you want to use your eggs because someone said you can. Do your homework, research about your situation and ask questions from experts in the field. In doing this, you are protecting yourself from wrong information and it makes it a lot easier to make right decisions.
- You must find ways to reduce stress, you need to find what works best for you. Some people have shared that walking helps, meditation, praying, and even seeing a therapist. So you can choose to join a support group, do yoga or even collect more information about your situation. Just do whatever makes you destress. Just make sure that you are doing the right thing and one thing that you can also do are breathing exercises. It is affordable and you can do it anywhere. You can do it alone and you can do it with your spouse. What you just need to do is sit down comfortably and close your eyes. Take a long slow deep breath. You can breathe in through your nose and then breathe out through your mouth. What you do is you fill your chest with air and slowly exhale. You can do this repeatedly for about five minutes and it can have a calming effect on you.
- One very important thing to also note is your diet. When you are facing fertility challenges, what you eat is important because you need to keep your body healthy. Your BMI needs to be normal and for that to happen it means you need to eat right. You need to cut down on sugar, salt, saturated fat and white flour. You might also want to reduce where you use technical additives in your food like alcohol. Conclusion
We expect that there will be new discoveries to help people who are going through fertility challenges, but we also expect that you on your own path will do a few things to help all of us in achieving the desired result that we want to achieve in your situation.