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Struggling to get pregnant can be a serious blow to the self-esteem of both women and men. Many people have reported feeling flawed, inadequate or guilty. These emotions can bring strain to the individual and couple. Couples undergoing fertility treatment clearly experience a roller-coaster of emotions, the high hopes and stress can be overwhelming at times.
When couples feel like they are failing to achieve their dreams it can impact everything, which is why when I work with an individual or couple one to one by providing online fertility hypnotherapy, clearing emotional blocks to get pregnant and guiding the couple through it, it is important to ensure the relationship is keeping the couple emotionally connected instead of only physically.
Unwillingness to look at infertility
Most of the couples I have helped wish they had started being treated by a fertility specialist earlier. When I ask what stopped them from having a fertility test, having IVF or other fertility treatments they often share with me that they didn’t want to believe something could be wrong and that living in denial was easier.
If one person in the relationship wants to wait and do things naturally and the other wants to get fertility treatment straight away, it can cause tension between a couple for obvious reasons. Disbelief and unwillingness to look at oneself can be a great factor in stopping couples get the support they need.
It comes back to the shame that many feel if their body is not functioning in that way. If you cannot agree whether to seek fertility treatment or what type of treatment plan to go for whether IVF, IUI, etc it’s important to listen and keep talking. Hiring a marriage coach can also be beneficial if you are stuck.
Infertility causes stress
There is no denying that infertility causes stress and this stress can impact the relationship. Fertility treatment also can come with its own set of pressures and hormonal changes, so during this time finding healthy ways to de-stress is essential.
Especially to prevent the silent treatment or aggressive arguments. I am not going to spend time telling you how to de-stress as you already know how to do that for yourself, so make a commitment to do it. 😊
The best relationship advice I find helps in this time is to not take things personally, if one of you does get sensitive or moody over something small. Allow it. Ask yourself is this worth getting into an argument over, on the whole scheme of things does this matter? For example; a dispute over the way to get somewhere in the car, or what the correct name of a TV show is or whose turn it was to pick up the milk may seem important at that moment, but is it really?
I like to ask myself in my own relationship will this even matter a month from now? If the answer is no, for the sake of the relationship, let it go.
Intimacy is often affected by infertility
I’ve guided thousands of couples now to build their relationship through my online podcast shows, hypnotherapy recordings and emails. I hear time and time again how intimacy changed from being enjoyable to mechanical when a couple is struggling to get pregnant.
Sex is a sacred special union between two people who love each other and this needs to be maintained as much as possible.
How is intimacy affected by infertility?
Infertility can make sex an anxious time. For some couples, it can take the fun and spontaneity out of their sex life, and many couples share with me that they feel sexually unattractive, used and like a machine.
Sex can become something that has to get done, rather than cherished and pleasurable. So couples who become closer during infertility can benefit from still making intimacy loving, affectionate and playful. Both before and after sex to keep the passion.
I am sharing this because it’s important to learn ways on how to keep the relationship alive through infertility and fertility treatment. Many found my empowered love formula helped or my fertility hypnotherapy beneficial as well as honest open discussions on feelings.
Relationships with family and friends
Infertility and fertility treatment doesn’t only affect the individual and the relationship, it can also have a negative impact on a couple’s relationships with family and friends.
It can be tiring being asked how the process is going or listening to suggestions on how to conceive. Such unsolicited advice can be frustrating where well-meaning friends and family may tell you to just relax and stop worrying so much. Or when they step in and give health advice such as ways to change your diet, what exercises to do, and how much sleep to get.
It’s key whether you are undergoing IVF or IUI fertility treatment, having fertility hypnotherapy or tackling your infertility on your own who you will and won’t tell. Expect that those who you do tell about infertility and the fertility process may pity you or want to offer advice.
Over half of the couples I have supported during this time found it easier just to tell people that they were not planning to have children or were still thinking about it, rather than admit their struggle and face others input.
David Richo talks about How to be an adult in relationships and has what is known as the 5’As.
Here are 5 A’s that are essential in having a close, connected and fulfilling relationship, inspired by David Richo how to be an adult in relationships and how they can help a couple through infertility and fertility treatment.
Refers to be being aware of your own needs and your partners need. It’s about striking the balance between looking after yourself, giving your partner attention and the relationship attention.
It is about being fully present for one another at that moment. It means rather than asking ‘how was your day, with your head stuck in the fridge door and not paying attention. It means asking, looking at them in the eye, listening attentively and receiving what they have to say. Giving them your full presence at that moment. It’s about listening to each other’s needs, wishes and feelings.
Acceptance is about showing respect and accepting each other wholeheartedly. Not only for who you are individually but also for whatever mood they are in. Where you value them and accept all of their feelings even if negative or you do not agree with them.
This is respecting your differences and loving regardless. When we feel accepted we feel that we belong and it makes us also feel secure in relationships.
In the case of infertility and fertility treatment IVF, and are you accepting and respecting each other’s moods, feelings and body. A lack of accepting infertility as a joint problem can affect the relationship negatively too. You are in this together, blaming definitely has no place when planning a family and undergoing fertility treatment together.
Many men and women complain to me that they do not feel appreciated, that they instead feel like they are doing more for the relationship than the other. Appreciation is about more than saying thank you, it is about making sure that you individually feel appreciated for the roles you are playing in the couple, whether that is taking care of the meals and home, being the breadwinner or managing the finances.
True appreciation is incredibly powerful in keeping a relationship alive. It’s praising one another so the other person feels admired. In the case of infertility and fertility IVF treatment are you appreciating each other’s feelings, efforts and being grateful for each other? This is key as mentioned undergoing fertility treatment can be strenuous.
Affection is a symbol of care and protection. It can be physical, holding hands, cuddles, foot massages and kisses. Affection speaks to our souls that we are loved and desirable.
Often I hear couples say, I am not the affectionate type or my husband or wife is not an affectionate person. By that they normally mean they are not displaying physical affection and touch. Yet affection can be non-physical, eye gazing, a love letter or email.
Affection enhances care and connectedness so in the case of infertility and fertility treatment it’s essential to show affection. Especially as sex can become more mechanical caressing, loving touch and showing how much you will care for one another is important.
Allowing is the best gift in a relationship I believe, it’s about saying yes to who your husband or wife is without trying to change or fix them. When you do this you show them that it is safe to be vulnerable. It is safe to show their needs and desires.
With fertility problems and fertility treatment, it’s important to allow your partner to express how they feel and be themselves. Allow all feelings, dreams and moods.
I hope you enjoyed this article. I have a very special gift that has helped many couples through infertility and that is my free forgive and let go mp3 meditation – you can get it by clicking here. It helps you to forgive each other, to relax during the struggle to get pregnant and the fertility process.
Looking for Counsellors in Dubai? Nicola Beer offers Private Counselling Dubai, Counselling in Abu Dhabi, many expats fly from different areas for her Counselling Riyadh, Jeddah, Bahrain, Doha and Muscat are the most frequent customers for weekend individual or marriage counselling services.