For your convenience, we have answered commonly asked questions by clients experiencing infertility. If we don’t address your concerns, please contact us below!
Q: Will infertility counseling help me get pregnant? How will it help me?
Simply put, infertility counseling will not get you pregnant. It will however, provide you time and a safe place to explore your options and develop skills to cope with the variety of emotions associated with infertility. Therapy will offer you space to grieve your losses, re-examine your future, and regain control of your life. In addition, therapy will help you determine the next steps in your journey, and explore your options for family building. While the experience of infertility may cause you to feel stagnant with no options for happiness, therapy will help you find meaning in your journey and reestablish purpose in your life.
Q: What are common emotional or psychological effects associated with infertility?
Infertility is associated with various emotional and psychological challenges, including, but not limited to:
- Loss of control
- Feelings of isolation
- Guilt, worthlessness, or inadequacy
- Change in sleeping or eating patterns
If you find yourself experiencing any of these emotional challenges on a frequent basis, therapy can help you learn skills to cope with these unwanted emotions and begin to heal.
Q: If infertility is a physical or medical concern, why is therapy necessary?
The root of infertility may be medical; however, the effects of infertility radiate throughout one’s life. The mind/body connection indicates that our body’s functioning and health influences our thoughts, beliefs, and emotional state, and vice versa. The relationship between our mind and body is very strong, and research is increasingly showing that it is difficult to separate one from the other. For example, if you are experiencing any of the emotional stressors listed above, your body may be experiencing the stress associated with these emotions. You may even notice increased stomachaches, headaches, fatigue, and a lowered immunity as the result of your emotional state. In addition, the medical complications of infertility may be affecting your emotional and psychological well-being. Therapy will help you cope with your emotional state and increase your psychological health, decreasing the stress you experience in both your mind and body.
Q: How does infertility affect my relationships?
Infertility may affect your relationships in various ways, including relationships with your partner, family, and friends. You may feel alone and isolated, as if no one understands your struggle. You may find it difficult to socialize with friends and family members who are in their child-bearing years, as you struggle to conceive and they may not. You may even worry about how you will respond the next time your family asks you, “So, when will you be pregnant?” Or, “just relax and you will get pregnant!” Anger, jealously, grief, and sadness are normal emotions associated with infertility, but managing these emotions and preparing for these difficult questions will help you salvage your relationships during a difficult time. You may feel a tendency to pull away from these important relationships, but having support during this time is vital. Therapy will provide you the opportunity to explore how to respond to family and friends, and maintain relationships in a way that is healthy and satisfying for you.
Q: Should I seek therapy individually, or with my partner?
Infertility counseling can be helpful for individuals and couples. The best modality of therapy (i.e. individual or couples) depends on your specific needs and goals; however, couples therapy is often a valuable option for those experiencing infertility. Many therapists identify the top two reasons for relationship conflict as sex and money; both of which are affected by infertility. Each relationship and couple have their own set of strengths and weaknesses, but infertility is known to be one of the biggest relationship stressors known to couples. Couples counseling will allow you to develop a stronger understanding of each others emotional reaction to infertility, and encourage time to discuss options for family building and what your future may hold. In addition, couples therapy will help you reconnect in other areas of your relationship, and help you find a healthy balance where infertility is a chapter of your novel, but not your whole story. Couples therapy will help you develop skills to better support each other during times of need, and allow you both a solid foundation to rely on.
Still have questions?