I swear there was a 15 year long period of my life when it seemed like every single one of my friends was dealing with infertility. It was sad for everyone and broke my heart to feel so helpless when my friends were struggling. Infertility is a problem many couples face, but few share publicly. Of course, I don’t blame anyone for that. It’s an emotional rollercoaster and I understand wanting to keep something that fraught private. But, the privacy of the struggle can lead to relationship issues with no one to turn to for advice. So, I thought I’d pitch in doing the only thing I really can, which is to offer relationship advice. This is the same advice I gave my friends when they were dealing with infertility, so I hope it helps you.
Infertility is such a beast of an issue for many reasons. One of them is that a woman’s body is pumped full of hormones that she’s not used to. These could cause all kinds of side effects and many of them are mental or emotional. Your man isn’t used to this version of you and can’t read your mind. You need to tell him every single thing you’re feeling, even if it seems crazy. Maybe you need him to come to the doctor with you more frequently. Maybe you just want him to rub your back while you cry. Maybe you need him to yell into a pillow with you because this is all so frustrating and you’re not sure what else to do. Those are all very reasonable requests to ask of your man. But, you have to ask them so he knows what you need.
I’m not asking you to be positive about the infertility process, because I think that’s impossible. It’s just so rotten and emotional. It wouldn’t be a natural human response to be positive. But, you can still be grateful. And I don’t mean be grateful for this struggle because again, not human. Be grateful for what is going well in your life. Spend time focusing on what’s going right and what’s a bit more bumpy won’t feel as bad. Be sure one of the things you’re grateful for is your boo. I like to make a list of three to five things everyday that I’m grateful for. They can be small things, like my DVR, or bigger things, like my loving community of friends. Same thing with how you should think about being grateful for your man. Maybe you’re grateful he got you a class of water when you woke up nauseous from your meds. Maybe you’re grateful you have a partner to hold your hand through all of this. Whatever it is, find at least one thing to be grateful about every day for him and you’ll feel a lot better about your relationship throughout.
Find a vent
Like I said in the intro, I understand that fertility is a very private issue. But, I think you need a way to vent that’s not directly on your man. He’s going through tough emotions now too and might need a break from being your rock. I’d recommend talking to friends or family you trust. There are also really great online support networks that you can turn to if you’d rather not involve friends or family. And, of course, there’s therapy. Pick whichever option (or options) sounds like the right fit for you.
I feel for you so much. This is a tough time that so many women go through. Just know that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel and you’ll have an amazing family one way or another. Until then, good luck!