7 Things Your Best Friend Wants You to Know About Infertility {GUEST POST}


This post originally appeared on Sarah’s Blog, Motherhood Manifested. Click here to read.

Hey loves! We are right in the middle of #nationalinfertilityawarenessweek (April 21-29, 2019) and you know that I couldn’t let this week pass without sharing some gems with you. This post is the perfect thing to send to your best friend who has the sweetest heart, would give you the shirt off of her (or his) back, but just doesn’t seem to understand the breadth and depth of your struggle with fertility.

While my personal philosophy is that most people are actually sub-fertile and with some adjustments to their health (mentally, physically, emotionally, etc.) they are able to restore their fertility and birth a child, I do understand that there are millions of men and women who genuinely struggle with infertility and spend days on end wondering if they will ever be parents. This post is dedicated to all of you!

So…if you were sent this post by your friend then I want you to know that she is trying to send you a message in the most loving way possible. We understand that it can be hard to know the best way to support a friend who is dealing with infertility so I have compiled a list of 7 things that your dear friend wants you to know about infertility.

Let’s jump right in!

  • “Please, for the love of everything holy. DO. NOT. TELL. ME. TO. RELAX.”

If I had a dime for every time someone told me to relax while my husband and I were trying to conceive our son, I’d have more than enough dimes to fill a sock and do some damage to those same people. While this piece of advice is often given in love, it is scientifically inaccurate. Relaxation is not the magic wand that will help infertile couples conceive. Yes, stress negatively affects fertility…but you know what is stressing your friend out? You telling her to relax. Infertility is an actual disease. You wouldn’t tell a friend to relax if they were fighting cancer, would you? Of course not! Then apply that same rationale to your friend who battles infertility.

  • “I want your support. Not your advice.”

The truth of the matter is she is up to her eyeballs in advice. It comes from everywhere and everyone. Her doctor, mother, mother-in-law, aunts, co-workers, internet forums, etc. Her search history probably looks like this:

  • “10DPO bfp symptoms. Left ovary twinge bfp. EWCM before period bfp or af?”

You are her best friend…she can come to you with anything so trust that if she really needed or wanted your advice, she wouldn’t hesitate to ask you. Instead of giving her advice, ask her how you can support her through this. Her answer may surprise you (or you may know her well enough that you already know what she’s gonna say). Listen to her and support her. That’s the best thing you can do.

  • “Becoming a mama is literally all I can think about”

Infertility struggles can be all encompassing. When we are trying to conceive we google EVERY symptom, we search for the best doctors, supplements, drugs, positions, etc. We wonder if this kale superfood salad we’re eating for lunch is healthy enough…”should I add avocado..I read omega-3s are good for egg health.”.We can’t help but peruse the baby section of target and dream of the day we get to buy our baby their first outfit. It takes over our whole lives. So, know that this journey is more than just having sex and peeing on sticks. It’s lonely, heart-wrenching, and suffocating at times.

  • “I feel like a failure”

For some reason, when you are trying to get pregnant every one and their freaking grandmother winds up pregnant. Seeing our friends with their swollen bumps and chubby babies makes us feel like failures. We are constantly wondering “What am I doing wrong?” and “What is wrong with me & my body?”You know the worst feeling? Watching your significant other’s friends become parents and feeling like you have failed them. “Will he stay with me if I can’t have kids?”These are the questions that we wrestle with every single day.

  • “Sometimes I feel like a shitty friend”

You know why we feel like that sometimes? Because there’s a teeny, tiny part of us that resents you because you either already have children or don’t seem to understand our struggle. You are our best friend so we are genuinely happy for you when you become pregnant, celebrate your baby’s first step or first birthday. We will even be there for you if you are going through a pregnancy scare and the last thing you want is to be pregnant. But secretly we are green with envy. I’m talking Grinch level green. Some of us may even seethe with anger and shake our fists to the heavens lamenting the fact that our time still has not come. By no means does this mean that we don’t want to hear about the blessings in your life. Please, please, please continue to share those joys with us. Just know that there is a small part of us that will be hurting while rejoicing with you. That hurt is what makes us feel like the worst friend in the world.

  • “Adoption is not for everyone”

People love to tell infertile couples that “you guys can always adopt”. I can guarantee she is thinking “Yes, Susan, we know that we can always adopt but we aren’t there yet and there’s nothing wrong with us wanting a child of our own”.And she’s right! We do know that there are thousands of children who need loving homes, and if the time comes we’d be happy to provide them with love but until then we will do everything we can do to have our own biological child. This thought process doesn’t make us unrealistic or selfish, it means we are determined and focused.

  • “Through it all, I remain hopeful”

Infertility is a bitch. It is hard, scary, heartbreaking, and trying. But through all of the tests, procedures, scans, doctors visits, injections, and hormones we remain hopeful. The one thing that remains consistent is our hope. Hope that we will experience the love of motherhood in whatever form the divine creator gives us. Hope that our prayers will not go unanswered. Hope that our child will be earthside with us one day.

Sarah G. Ellis is an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach who works with women who are trying to conceive and are looking for a natural approach to fertility. Sarah understands the importance of holistically addressing a woman’s health before she prepares for motherhood. Sarah has helped a number of women make nutritional and lifestyle changes to increase their chances of having a healthy pregnancy and birth. She lives in San Diego, CA with her husband, fiesty dog Roxy, and her beautiful baby boy, Roman.

Integrative Nutrition Health Coach
Founder, Motherhood Manifested Fertility Coaching



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