It should come as no surprise that couples going through the infertility struggle are faced with a unique set of challenges that have a mental, physical, emotional, and financial impact on the relationship. Because of this additional stress, couples can easily lose sight of the foundation of their love and forget the importance of a physical and emotional connection. Here we offer suggestions on how you can nurture your relationship during this tough time and come out even stronger at the end.
Make Your Relationship the Top Priority. A central principle for coping with infertility is to make your relationship the number one priority. You must always remember why you love each other and why you made the commitment to be together, never losing sight of the love that brought you together in the first place. Communication is also key as it will help both of you understand where you are mentally and emotionally so that you are able to respect each other’s coping styles. Check in with each other often and discuss what you may need from one another to feel supported and loved.
Set Limits on Infertility Talks. While infertility can be consuming of a relationship, try your best to limit the amount of time and energy you spend talking about your fertility issues. When the conversation is on the table, give yourself about 20-30 minutes to tackle the logistics and to focus on how both of you are handling the situation. Also give yourself mental breaks, i.e. date nights where you commit to not talking about fertility issues at all.
Keep the Romance Alive. It is so important to keep a physical connection with your partner in order to feel a closeness that can sometimes be lacking. This, of course, is hard to do at times because sex can easily turn into a means to an end, i.e. planned baby-making in lieu of romantic love-making. It’s no one’s fault, but the lack of romance can often affect one of both partners in many ways – feelings of being unloved due to either less sex or having only routine, goal-directed sex, pressures to perform and succeed during sex, or feelings of hurt by their partner’s frustration and disappointment.
Be Aware of Each Other’s Emotional Responses. When you are aware of how each of you responds to the stress of infertility, you can develop a closeness to each other and emotional safety. When possible, try to eliminate anger, blame, and disappointment from the conversation especially when it comes to verbal or non-verbal invitations to sexual intimacy. Both of you should have a crystal-clear understanding and be mindful and respectful of your needs, wants, and desires, whether it is on a physical or an emotional level.
If you would like information on how we can help you through the infertility process or if you would like to schedule a consultation with one of our top fertility specialists at our Raleigh, NC clinic, please call us at (919) 908-0000.