Fertility at Christmas

I love Christmas and getting together with all of my family. It’s a wonderfully special time to celebrate. But, I’m sure many of you reading this will have been asked the question, “When are you going to have a baby”. Sometimes this is asked tactfully but most of the time, it is a clumsy question blurted out by a well-meaning relative.

Combined with time spent with lots of nieces, nephews, pregnant sister-in-laws, friends discussing their birthing horrors, I’ll bet that some of you can’t wait to shut the door on 2017.

But where does that leave you as we approach the New Year. Can you face another year of hoping for your baby to appear. Another month of waiting for a positive pregnancy test? Do you have the strength to go through another round of IVF? Why is it so hard to conceive when many others seem to just do it straight away.

These are thoughts that I hear the most often in my clinic room. Sometimes the emotions involved are very overwhelming. They can range from disappointment, devastation, jealousy, envy, joy, hope, fear and can often be the first time they’ve been experienced in such magnitude. Having emotions like this, on an ever-rolling cycle does not mean that you are a bad or negative person. You are going through a really difficult, challenging time and it is normal to have these feelings.

The thing is, it’s very difficult for anyone to say or do the right thing to help you through this. Nobody else really understands what you are going through and each situation and relationship is different. Over the years I have asked my clients who have gone on to have their family, what advice would you give to others? Here are a few of their replies:

I used to try and think of all the good things that i still had in my life and just kept thinking it’s not my/our time yet…..

It’s hard, really hard. And sometimes you feel so alone. Don’t give up. But at the same time, don’t stop your life- still do things, still go places, still see people. Try, if at all possible, to distract yourself. Things happen when you least expect them. Stress is bad. Try and slow down, try and relax, and kept on seeing Gabby xx

Always believe xx

Miracles happen xx

Concentrate on the good things in your life, think positive and believe

Never give up or lose hope. Don’t bottle it up because you’re never alone x

Try not to focus on it, much easier said than done. It’ll happen when the time is right but miracles need time and patience. It happens when you least expect it so try to relax and keep enjoying life. Also talk about it as once you do you’ll realise that for most people it’s not an easy journey either x

It’s interesting that the advice given above doesn’t mention anything to do with food, alcohol, exercise etc. People that have walked on this path know that the main challenge will always be in your head. Even if you have medical complications, it’s keeping yourself open to the possibility of getting pregnant which is the biggest challenge. A while ago I had the pleasure of meeting a couple who were successful on their second round of IVF. They both came (along with their newborn) to speak to some of my fertility clients about their journey. At the end of their inspiring talk the husband said something that has stuck with me for years. “Although this has been the most difficult thing we have ever been through, we have become much closer as a couple. We have learnt how to communicate with each other at times of intense emotion and stress and I think this has made us into the best parents we can be for our daughter.”

So as we begin 2018 please be hopeful and optimistic about getting pregnant this year. it often happens when you are just about to give up hope. You are stronger and braver than you think you are.