By Fran Migliorati
Trying to conceive can be one of the most difficult experiences in life. In my experience, just saying out loud that my husband and I were ‘trying for a baby’ brought up feelings of shame and guilt because fertility is such a taboo topic. Just like for many other women, trying to conceive was a very lonely experience for me.
Starting, or growing, a family can be a long journey for some. Navigating the emotional rollercoaster of trying to conceive is a struggle that can be amplified by the feeling of loneliness and the lack of understanding from friends and family who haven’t been through it themselves, especially from those who fell pregnant easily.
There are many 'words of advice’ and comments that are extremely hurtful but these aren't always obvious, most people don’t even realize it as they say these things. And because whoever is on the receiving end is already in an emotionally vulnerable space, it becomes very hard for them to voice their hurt and advocate for themselves at that moment in time.
So, I have asked the trying to conceive community what they wish people who fell pregnant easily knew about their fertility struggles, and here is what they said:
Falling pregnant easily doesn’t guarantee taking a healthy baby home.
Relaxing doesn’t help you get pregnant faster.
Getting pregnant can actually feel terrifying.
Getting pregnant is a miracle in itself and should be treated as such.
Getting pregnant doesn't just happen, as some people don’t even ovulate on their own (without medical assistance).
Just as some people can’t control how easy it is for them to get pregnant, some can’t control how difficult it is.
How incredibly lucky they are to be able to get pregnant.
How much science actually goes in behind it (assisted reproduction).
Infertility is painful, not only during treatments and/or failed cycles, but all the time.
I just wish they had a more open mind and knew their audience before telling them how easy it was for them to conceive.
Infertility is a reproductive disease, it's a medical issue.
Even though my body isn’t carrying a child, it still doesn't feel like my own body sometimes. I sacrifice so much to prepare for treatments, transfer and sometimes it’s all for nothing.
IVF isn’t necessarily exciting, it’s scary.
Infertility doesn’t discriminate against age. Being young doesn’t mean you are fertile.
There is no way to stop thinking about trying to conceive when you are going through infertility.
It’s not always by choice, so don’t ever say ‘they deserve a sibling’ as you have no idea what I’m going through.
It’s out of my control, I may actually never get pregnant.
Things you may consider saying instead:
First, never ask anyone when they are having children (or another child) as you just don’t know what they are going through.
I’m sorry you are going through this. I don’t know what it feels like but I’m here for you.
I know this is a sensitive topic for you, so I’m here to listen and support you in whichever way you may need.
I can see you are in pain, I’m sorry. I love you and I’m always here for you.
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About Fran - Fran Migliorati is a certified Fertility + Mindset coach based in London, UK. Fran is an IVF twin mum and ectopic pregnancy survivor. She now helps women to navigate the ups and downs of their own fertility journey with emotional control and comfort, and a focus on the mind-body connection. Her methods include life coaching, mindset coaching, EFT, NLP and energy healing.