How to cope with infertility:
Everytime I see children in cute toy advertisements or in real life- crossing roads holding their parents’ fingers, eating in the most sloppy manner with ketchup around their lips, bawling for a toy, or just running around in the playground- the thought comes to my mind that soon I’d be getting married and having kids of my own. I love kids and I wouldn’t mind having one or two troublemakers of my own. 🙂
A child brings along a world of its own. To its eye, everything seems fresh, new and wonderful. Observe a family during a festival- Diwali, Christmas, Id or others- and children would seem the most excited. While the grownups forget the joys and wonders of these festivals in their daily battles, the children never do. And their untiring chatter and boundless energy make our world cheerful and full of joy. No wonder it’s every woman’s dream to be blessed with motherhood. Every woman wants a share of this happiness.
If tomorrow I decide to start my family and come to know that I can’t bear a child my world can come crashing down. It’s been said many a times, being a mother completes a woman. Learning about one’s sterility can be devastating, leaving the woman and her spouse helpless and distraught. Communication could be the key to not letting infertility snowball into marital discontent and resentment. Couples should consider adoption as a means to quench their parental thirst. After all its the child that gives birth to the mother in a woman. Every child deserves a mother, as every woman deserves motherhood. But what if a woman can’t become a mother?
Infertility primarily refers to the biological inability of a person to contribute to conception. Infertility may also refer to the state of a woman who is unable to carry a pregnancy to full term. With all the medicines, heavy alcohol use, drugs, environmental pollution, toxins including pesticides and lead, hormonal problems, radiation therapies and such infertility is nothing recent.
The tornado of emotions infertility brings is overwhelming. A woman may experience feelings of loss, rejection, loss of connection with your partner, mood swings, shame, denial, lost of self confidence and loss of self love.
There are many ways you can brave this rocky phase of life. I am listing some of them here:
• Talk it out: Talk to your husband about the feelings you are going through, talk to your parents and to close friends who know about your situation. It helps. Couples who are not able to converse with and seek support in each other in this situation often find themselves drifting apart. Women are more likely to talk it out and men are more prone to keeping it inside.
• Read and learn: be your own therapist in this situation. Read a lot of books on topics you like. Go online and Google every question and thought that crosses your mind. You would get many but sensible opinions about it.
• Blog about your life: I would not say it is necessary but it definitely helps to let go of your feelings and pour your heart out. Who knows you may find a support system online.
• Don’t blame yourself: this one is special in our case because in India everyone, from a woman’s mother-in-law to her family, is ready to blame the woman (the mother) if they come to know she is having trouble in getting pregnant. I want you all to clearly understand that it is NOT YOUR FAULT. You did not invite infertility. It can be you, your husband or just some other factor. No woman on her own chooses infertility and no one can blame you for this.
• Seek support: form a group or go on outings with woman and couples who are in the same boat.
• Examine yourself: concentrate on your thoughts and your anger. See and judge what things triggers you off and try keeping these triggers at bay. Try to do the things you like.
• Pamper yourself: Eat what you like the most. Forget about those extra kilos. Do what you like doing the most. Go shopping, go out hang out with your bunch of girlfriends, go to your favourite spa or, if possible, take that very dreamt and put off for later holiday to the relaxing back waters of Kerala with your spouse.
• Get support from professionals: If required go see a therapist. Take professional advice.
• Practise yoga and meditation: by practising meditation your can zero on your thoughts and keep all the negative energy around you away.
• Don’t let infertility take over your life: Continue withyour routine and try to add more to it. Never forgetting watering your plants, doing your morning chores or even dressing up.
• Maintain physical intimacy with your partner: stay close with your spouse and get that once in a day very needed hug from him.
• Balance optimism and realism: with all the technology available today 80 percent of infertile couple end up having a baby. If nothing else, you always have the lovely option of adoption.
• Lastly, have faith and patience. Time never stays the same and you do not know, you might just have a beautiful basket full of surprises waiting for you. 🙂