Dealing with infertility and going through treatments can be exhausting—both mentally and physically. From hormone injections, to doctor appointments, to emotional roller coasters, infertility isn’t an easy situation to manage.
At Arizona Center for Reproductive Endocrinology & Infertility, we understand that coping with infertility is a very difficult part of your journey. Our team is here to support you in any way possible; we’re here to walk with you and hold your hand through the entire process. We know that everyone deals with the stress and challenge of infertility differently, but here are five copping tips we’ve found to be helpful for most of our patients.
Accept that your feelings are legitimate and normal
When a person or couple is trying for a pregnancy or to have a baby, there are often a ton of expectations. With those, come stress, anxiety, self-doubt, and disappointment. The first step in coping with these feelings are identifying them (and their source), and accepting that these emotions are legitimate perfectly normal. You don’t have to put on a brave face every day or attempt to shut off your feelings. If you need to cry at an appointment or scream into a pillow before bed, that’s okay. When you try to ignore your feelings, you drain your energy and create more stress.
Work with your partner as a team.
It’s very likely that you and your partner will deal with the stress of infertility and its treatments very differently. Remember that you both are on the same team and working towards the same goal. While you both figure out how to cope, keep communication open—especially in regards to your emotions, doubts, concerns, and mental stress. If you are going through treatments and trying to have a baby on your own, find someone you can trust to be your support during this time, and remember, AZCREI is on your team through it all as well.
Manage Your Stress (to the Best of Your Ability)
During treatments, you may often feel powerless, helpless, confused, and overwhelmed. Our team does out best to mitigate some of these stressors by giving you as much information as possible and several treatment options so you feel confident and comfortable in your decisions. Stress does have an impact on fertility, so it’s important to manage it to the best of your ability. We know that some days or situations will feel very challenging—again, that’s expected and completely normal. In general, we encourage you to practice stress-management techniques such as yoga, meditation, journaling, physical activity, or whatever else you find helpful, as you go through this journey.
Find a Community of Support
Online communities, blogs, and forums can be helpful for finding other people who are also coping with infertility. This can be helpful if you aren’t comfortable discussing your personal journey face-to-face. Of course, in-person support groups and counseling may also be extremely helpful too. Engaging in conversations within a trusted community can ease your frustrations and provide additional help, support, and encouragement; you’ll also hear or read about success stories and the incredible joy that will come when the struggle is over and you finally have your baby.
You can also create your own community of family, friends, and loved ones; if they’ve never dealt with infertility themselves, ask them to educate themselves and be vocal about what you need (or don’t need) during this season of life.
Know When It’s Time to Seek Help
Infertility treatments are quite complex and complicated; you’ll likely spend a great deal of time seeking out resources and learning about your options. If you’ve been struggling with infertility for more than six months (if you’re 35 or older) to a year (if you’re younger than 35), it’s time to seek medical assistance to help you identify and overcome the potential cause of your infertility. Additionally, an infertility specialist can refer you to a mental health specialist to help you cope with your emotions in a safe and healthy environment.
The most important thing when it comes to infertility support is understanding that you’re not alone in the ups and downs of this journey. Our team at AZCREI wants to be there for you and offer you support every step of the way. To find out more about our treatment process or to schedule a visit, contact us online or by calling (520) 326-0001.