Coping with infertility over the holidays

Princeton-holidays-winterThose couples suffering with infertility understand the emotional toll that it can take on their lives. While it might seem that the holiday season would be a welcome break from the treadmill of IVF and other fertility treatments, the season itself has its own stressors. The Christmas and Chanukah parties and Thanksgiving dinners may bring about uncomfortable encounters with pregnant women and young babies, and questions from well wishing yet insensitive relatives and friends. So, how to cope?  Here a few suggestions:

  • Don’t feel obligated to show up. It is OK to turn down an invitation if you think it is likely to make you uncomfortable.
  • Prepare your answers. Whatever you and your significant other chose to share with friends and family are your own business, but it will be easier if you have a “party line” to tell others.
  • Decide how you want to deal with babies. Will holding your infant niece feel right or make you uncomfortable? Everyone has a different answer to that question. Some women find this comforting  and others it breeds more resentment.
  • Take a break. At fertility clinics across the country, things slow down in December and we lots of new patients in January. Taking a well deserved month off is not going to significantly harm your chances and will give a chance for a fresh start in the New Year.

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