Ranae von Meding, same-sex mum-of-two, talks about the emotional cost of fertility treatment and how you can get the help you may need.
There is no denying that fertility treatment is hard. It’s draining both financially and physically. Some have compared it to a marathon.
You research, you prepare, you build yourself up. But on the big day, there is no telling what the outcome will be.
Because we are so consumed with the practical side of fertility treatment (will it work?) we often overlook the emotional toll it takes on us.
It’s an all-consuming time in your life. There is a huge amount of uncertainty and a hell of a lot of waiting around.
Highs like you’ve never experienced and lows like nothing you’ve ever known possible. It’s quite frankly, an emotional rollercoaster.
And so, it’s incredibly important, that as you
go through your fertility journey, you are mindful of your emotional health.
My wife and I have gone through many rounds of IVF. I know from experience, that you can be so focused on a positive outcome, that you forget to think about your own emotional wellbeing.
Here are a few things which I found really helped us while were in the thick of our IVF journey.
Counselling is a very useful tool. It’s a safe space to process the monumental thing you are going through - both as a couple and an individual. I can’t recommend this enough, and in fact, many clinics require you to undergo counselling as a part of your treatment.
Chances are, your body is going to be going through a really hard time. Taking a bit of time to pamper yourself will go a long way for your emotional health.
This doesn’t have to mean massages and spa days (those these are nice!) Even just getting out for a walk, getting fresh air or reading your favourite book will do you a world of good.
Find Your Tribe
I have found that in life, finding your tribe is vital to survival. Your tribe are the people who you can confide in and who are there for you- not just in the good times, but even more importantly, in the bad.
You don’t have to have many of them - I always say ‘Quality over Quantity!’ Even a handful of people who you trust with the details of your treatment.
Discuss how you are feeling as you go through it, and don’t bottle it all up. Talking about fertility treatment can be hard for some, but it’s so important to process it as you go.
Remember, no matter the outcome of your journey, there are always options. Sometimes it may feel like the end of the road but I can promise you, no matter what, life continues beyond fertility treatment.