For many people, the holidays are all about the children in our lives. Watching them opening presents under a brightly decorated tree gives adults as much pleasure as the little ones. The sound of laughter and joy echoing through the house as they play with new toys and chase cousins from room to room is contagious. For couples who have a difficult time conceiving, the festive sounds ring hollow. Coping with infertility during the holidays is often emotionally draining. It is common for couple to say they struggle with anger, fear, guilt, feelings of isolation, embarrassment, and emptiness. The Viera Fertility Center understands this pain, and wants to help you navigate the season with less stress this year.
As a team, we talk openly with patients in Melbourne, Fla. and the surrounding area about fertility treatment options, today we would like to help you with suggestions to make the holiday season easier for you and your family.
Deciding Whether to Go or Stay Home
Let’s face it, everyone copes with the swirling emotions of un-parenthood differently. Some couples, especially those who haven’t discussed their fertility challenges with family members, feel obligated to show up for the large celebrations and gift-giving parties. Others see these times as a way to gather support and hope from people who love them, and get a few hours snuggling with the babies and toddlers that are sure to be there.
While most of us are raised to put others’ needs before our own, this is one time you need to put yourself first. If you don’t feel mentally up to the challenge, let everyone know you aren’t coming for the annual get-together. Yes, some people may protest, even get outright mad, that you won’t be attending, but they will get over it.
You can always make a late entrance and early exit, or at least give yourself permission to leave whenever you need, or want, to. This option may assuage your guilt for missing the opportunity to see family members who only make it to town every few years.
Alternatively, plan something a little more intimate, where you can control the conversations and the environment. A couple’s get-a-way in the mountains skiing is one option. Hosting a gathering for other couples struggling with infertility is another possibility. A word of caution, check with your fertility specialist before learning a new sport, dramatically changing your physical activities may affect your ability to achieve a successful pregnancy.
The point is, you decide how to spend your Thanksgiving, Christmas or Passover this year.
Coming Out About Your Infertility or Hiding in the Shadows
There are advantages to telling everyone about your situation. For one thing, with one in ten women experiencing challenges carrying a pregnancy to term, you may find others in your family circle who understand what you are going through. And, not having to hide the problem will make it easier to skip some gatherings without having a long, drawn-out debate.
On the other hand, talking about timed intercourse and IVF procedures isn’t necessarily the norm over roasted turkey and pumpkin pie. Plus, you probably don’t want to spend the whole evening dealing with those sidelong glances and difficult conversation. Or worse, listening to 101 home remedies and old wives tales.
If you decide to share the news that you are considering fertility treatments, decide whether to tell one, or a few, people you trust, or make an announcement when everyone is together. The important thing to remember is that it is perfectly OK to tell everyone you wanted them to know, but you aren’t ready to talk about it. Later, you can have more in-depth conversations with close friends and family as time allows, and you feel more comfortable talking about your journey toward parenthood.
Coping with infertility during the holidays can be stressful. But, it doesn’t have to be for Melbourne, Fla couples. Contact the Viera Fertility Center today to schedule an appointment to discuss fertility treatments available.