It’s common to experience a roller coaster of emotions during infertility treatment. Often, you and your partner will be feeling very similar things; other times, you won’t. Regardless of what you are feeling when, good communication is extremely important during this exciting, yet stressful, period of your life.
The following list of tips is a good guide to keeping the lines of communication open.
It seems obvious, but when we’re experiencing strong emotions we get caught up in what we’re feeling and tend to forget to simply listen to what our partner is trying to tell us. Listening is an invaluable tool for good communication, and it is beneficial to feel as though you’ve been heard by the person with whom you are sharing your life. Sometimes listening will lead to a meaningful exchange. Other times your partner just needs to be heard and have their feelings acknowledged.
When dealing with sensitive subjects there’s a tendency to not fully share what you’re feeling for fear of judgment, or concern that your partner may feel differently which could lead to a potential rift. We cannot stress enough how important it is for you to be honest with your partner. Holding back is unfair to both of you. You won’t experience the relief of sharing how you actually feel, and they won’t be able to help you if they don’t know what’s really going on. Honesty can be painful at times. If feelings are hurt, it’s ok to take a break from the conversation and come back to it later. Remember to reserve judgment, your primary goal is to support and love each other.
We understand that optimism is hardest to cultivate during difficult times. Ironically, that is when you need it the most. Negativity breeds negativity. It’s imperative to let go of the negative thoughts and feelings you may be feeling about your situation.
Take things day by day. Some days will be stressful and hard, others will be fun and joyful. Although difficult, what you are experiencing is temporary…you will come out the other side. Shifting perspective on the down days can help. Go for a walk, watch your favorite TV show, get a massage. Do whatever it is that helps you relax and reset, with or without your partner. Whatever gets you in a better mindset will be beneficial for you both.
It may seem hard to believe when you’re in the midst of it, but your fertility journey will be resolved one day. In the meantime, be gentle with yourself and each other. Each phase of your journey, no matter how trying, is getting you one step closer to your ultimate goal of having a family. Accept whatever each day brings without struggle; acceptance of your situation can be a powerful coping mechanism. Working through the challenges of infertility together with kindness and understanding will make the foundation for your future family a strong, healthy one.