Infertility is a topic that will impact nearly all women in some way. Either yourself or someone you know will likely struggle with this – it affects 1 in every 10 women. For some women, it can feel unbearable to wait 6 months to get pregnant – others will wait years and spend thousands of dollars, undergoing invasive treatments to conceive. As more women wait until they’re a bit older to start trying to conceive, more struggle with this every day. As a physician, I am very well practiced at discussing the “medical” side of this when patients come into the office…. but as a friend? I still struggle to come up with the right things to say and do.
I reached out to one of my #WCW’s, Natalie Bushman, fellow mommy-blogger at Nat your average girl, for some help and am so happy to share her wisdom here. On her blog, she has shared her journey through new motherhood, then through secondary infertility (difficulty conceiving after a successful natural pregnancy), the twin pregnancy that resulted from treatments and being a mom of 3 along with fabulous personal style and home decor posts.
She recently discovered they’ll be bringing baby #4 into the family (congrats!!!) and I asked her to give us some insight into being there for friends who are going through an infertility journey since she’s personally experienced this from multiple angles.
Thinking back to when you first got pregnant with Blair, did you have friends who were already dealing with infertility issues? How did you approach them with news of your pregnancy then?
I’m sure people had all kinds of responses when you were struggling to get pregnant the second time around. You’ve blogged about the things people should NOT say to couples. Did any friends or family members say things that were helpful and supportive?
I’m sorry. That’s so hard. Is there anything I can do for you to help?
How can people approach this with friends who they aren’t sure if they’re having fertility problems – do you think that’s different than how you approach friends who have told you outright they’re in fertility treatment?
Did you want people who knew what you were going through to check in on you regularly? Or did you feel like you just wanted to update them and not be bothered?
Did you worry about announcing this recent pregnancy since you didn’t have trouble conceiving this time?
I think if we all had a little more grace we’d all be better off!