Some people make getting pregnant look so easy. If we had a dollar for every “It was a surprise” or “I was taking contraception” story that we heard, we could afford all the infertility treatment that we wanted.
So when it comes the time to “try”, and it doesn’t happen, it starts the over-thinking. As the months go on, and the negative pregnancy tests keep coming, the grief that comes with those negatives becomes absolutely overwhelming. Even the most positive person starts to think, why isn’t this happening for me?
3 weeks of the month spent hoping, only for that day to come and there it is – the bad news. Not this month.
The months and months of “not this month” then become, what is wrong with me? Tests may confirm what you feared, but doctors remain vague – keep trying and stay calm! Stress can cause infertility. And there it is, the words that no anxiety sufferer EVER wants to hear – am I causing my infertility?
And we keep it to ourselves, don’t we? Pregnancy is such a happy, beautiful thing. We are truly happy for our friends, and delighted with the new little additions. But we are hiding our deep, chronic longing for something that it seems everyone can have except us. We hear the “awful” stories of friends who tell us it took them months to conceive, when they have no idea that we have been trying for years. The older generation aren’t any help, as they fill us with “helpful” stories of friends who struggled for years and now have several kids. Don’t worry they say. It does not help. Every month the grief overwhelms for a life that did not come.
We start to mentally beat ourselves up more and more, comparing ourselves to others and feeling completely broken inside. Am I causing this? Is this happening because I am anxious? Dr. Google doesn’t help either, just bringing up article after article, medical research after medical research, to confirm that yes, anxiety can cause infertility.
It’s such a complex subject that we may never be able to understand why this happened this way, but one thing is for sure – it is NOT your fault. You have done nothing to cause this. This is crucial to accept. We must start by removing all guilt and blame.
We must also stop with comparisons. Social media makes comparing our lives almost impossible to avoid, but we must. No good comes from this. We must take steps to protect ourselves. We are already suffering enough.
It is important to remember that infertility has the same effect as cancer on our mental health, so if you feel that you are not coping, make sure to go to your doctor and talk about how you are feeling. Let the doctor not only take care of the physical aspect, but also support you with the emotional aspect. It is important to discuss exactly how you are feeling and seek the support that you need. This is also extremely important.
If you are struggling with infertility, you are already going through one of the hardest challenges that someone can go through. Your main focus right now needs to be taking care of you and only you. Practise self-love. Self-care and most importantly respect what you need. Learn to say no. To protect yourself. Make yourself no.1 and tend to you first. Let the doctor and life take care of the rest.