We saw this article on Parent 24 and couldn’t resist sharing this with you, as it is just spot on!
So many people struggle to fall pregnant. With life being increasingly stressful, dual working households with parents playing multiple roles, fast paced lives, compromises being made with eating choices due to time pressures and more, there are many factors that often compound the stress of not being able to conceive. You’ve probably heard the saying “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a battle” and this is certainly the case here.
If you don’t know the whole context, be careful of giving advice.
Here are five things you should never say to someone who is struggling with fertility:
1. Just relax, and it will happen
This is by far the most highly cited zinger that people struggling with infertility hear, but there is also a lack of evidence that stress contributes to infertility.
2. Have you tried standing on your head during sex? Cutting dairy?
Most of these old wives tales have no research backing them up whatsoever. Advice is also often given out without any knowledge of the receiver’s situation.
Imagine you’ve been diagnosed with a medical condition that makes it very difficult to conceive; you’ve undergone three failed IVF cycles and have had multiple miscarriages. Just imagine how insulting and frustrating it would be to be told that if only you had cut out dairy, you would have been pregnant years ago.
3. Don’t worry; my friend, so-and-so, had infertility and IVF worked for them!
Infertility prognosis varies vastly according to each patient’s particular circumstances: their age, diagnosis, reproductive history and hormone levels are all strong predictors of treatment success.
So, unfortunately, the fact that a friend of a friend of yours conceived through IVF (in vitro fertilization) means nothing for the person in front of you.
4. Are you sure you want kids?
You can have mine! Kids can be exhausting — feel free to vent about this to your other parent-friends. But when you’re with a friend struggling with infertility, be sensitive to the fact that they would give anything to have what you have. Though this is meant to be funny, it’s likely to be perceived as insensitive and ungrateful.
5. Maybe you should just adopt.
There are lots of children who need a good home. There is no “just” adopt. This is a very personal choice that requires careful consideration, that people need to reach on their own.
So what should you
Infertility often involves grieving the existence of a child the person may never have. So, think of how you might interact with people experiencing other kinds of grief — for example, a friend whose spouse has died. You would never say: “I know you just lost your husband but just try to relax” or “You can have mine!”
You would say: “This must be so hard for you” or “Anytime you need to talk, I’m here for you.” You can also ask the person how you can be most helpful.
Some people like to talk about their infertility struggles blow-by-blow; others would prefer to be distracted from them. So, a good approach to ask how you can be most supportive or simply let them know that you are there for them and here if they ever want to talk.
Read the original article here: