Coping with infertility is challenging and it almost seems like no other experience we’ve had previously in life has prepared us for this moment, to cope with such deep pain. Now that it has been almost two decades of coping with my own infertility, being a nurse and coach helping others conceive, I though it would be important to give you a few strategies.
In our previous post we gave you the first 5 strategies, if you haven’t read it yet, do check it out here. And today we give you the next 5 strategies:
We all have that tiny voice in our head telling us things we don’t like to hear. This tiny voice can really affect your ability to enjoy and get on with life. So, this next strategy is all about identifying those negative thoughts and challenging them by looking for evidence against them. The easiest way to do this is by getting a pen and paper and drawing a table like the one below.
Write down those negative thoughts on the first column, in this case we have the example “My life is meaningless”. Then write the emotion and intensity (out of 10) triggered by that thought. For the next step, reflect on the reasons behind that though, in this case “I don’t have a child yet”. Up until this point, our brain does this exercise automatically.
The important part is what follows, where we look for evidence that refutes the thought. In this case, “I have a loving partner, friends and a job that I enjoy which give meaning to my life”. Write your conclusion, which combines all evidence (the one that supports and the one that refutes) and notice how the intensity of the emotion has reduced.
As we grow up, there seems to be a tendency to believe that we are not supposed to feel negative emotions. However, negative emotions are a normal reaction to a situation you weren’t expecting to happen the way it did. All emotions, positive and negative are normal, they allow us to process events that happen in life. So, allow yourself to not be ok. Acknowledge your emotions, don’t fight them. And allow yourself to feel whatever you are feeling, without judging.
Whether you are going through this journey by yourself and keeping it a secret from family and friends, or you are being open about it, there will always be social triggers that may cause emotional distress. These triggers may come as an invitation to a baby shower, or a question about when you are having children. No matter what the trigger is, remember to protect your mental health and put yourself first. Choose a response that meets your needs and protects your wellbeing.
People who share their fertility challenges with someone else are less likely to feel emotional distressed, depressed, or anxious. If you feel comfortable sharing with a friend or family member, do so. Alternatively, if you don’t want your family and friends to know, there is a way of getting support through social media. There are closed Facebook groups or Instagram accounts where you don’t have to share your name, email or any detail that links it to your real life. It’s an opportunity to talk to others going through the same challenges. Use hashtags to find these communities #TTC #IVF #fertilityjourney #infertility
Due to the challenges brought by infertility and treatment, it is likely that you will need professional support at some point. This professional support can be through an NLP/CBT coach, counsellor, psychologist.You will be able to share your thoughts and feelings and learn some useful ways of managing emotions, strategies of communication, managing difficult conversations and making decisions.
At inFertile Life we are aware most people underestimate the emotional distress that may be caused by infertility, so whatever stage you’re in, make sure you are prepared. In our commitment to support you, we are giving away a Free Fertility Coaching consultation with our awarded Nurse Consultant and NLP Coach Andreia Trigo. It’s never too late to start your fertility support plan, why not start today? Book your appointment here.
About Andreia Trigo
Andreia Trigo RN BSc MSc is the founder of inFertile Life, multi-awarded nurse consultant, coach, author and TEDx speaker. Combining her fourteen-year medical experience, CBT, NLP and her own eighteen-year infertility journey, she has developed unique strategies to help people undergoing similar challenges achieve their reproductive goals. The Enhanced Fertility Programme is helping people worldwide and has been awarded Best Innovation in Business 2018 and E-Business of 2018.