We have suggested responses to infertility comments
How do you respond when well-meaning friends say hurtful things disguised as advice? We’ve compiled a list of responses to infertility comments.
Friends and family who have never faced infertility, the generation that didn’t talk openly about medical concerns, and those we call “Fertile Myrtles,” may underestimate infertility.
In younger years, many of us try not to get pregnant. We all assume that having a child is a ‘right,” and conception will happen on command. So it’s understandable that many people don’t have enough information to have an empathetic conversation with you.
A list of responses to infertility comments
When you do encounter these emotional landmines, you can diffuse the situation with a retort-at-the-ready. Here are some responses to infertility comments.
“Just relax and you’ll get pregnant!” Tell the “well-meaning adviser” that couples who get pregnant on cruise vacations aren’t infertile. Infertility is a disease that requires treatment.
“It could be worse, you could have (fill in the blank).” Explain that for you and your partner, the loss you feel every month is painful and real. For you, this is the worst thing that could happen.
“I found something on the Internet…” Thank your friend, but remind him or her that you have done your homework. Tell them you have entrusted your care to a reproductive endocrinologist, a specialist with seven additional years of education and training beyond medical school.
“You could always adopt.” Respond with “We are committed, financially and emotionally, to conceiving a child and will let you know when and if we change course.” This is one of best responses to infertility comments.
“I hear that acupuncture cures infertility.” Fertility experts agree that acupuncture with fertility treatment may increase the chance for pregnancy. However, data suggesting that acupuncture alone improves results are not conclusive.
Other advice for hopeful parents
Your family and friends may feel powerless to help. However, you can point them toward helpful websites (Resolve.org features a ‘Just For Friends and Family’ page). You can also ask them for what you need. A listening ear, rides to appointments and grace when difficult situations arise, like baby showers and Mother’s Day.
Most importantly, remind your support system this isn’t about them. When friends, family and co-workers try to “fix” your infertility, it just adds to the frustration that you and your partner already feel. Often the best responses to infertility comments to someone riding the roller-coaster of infertility is to say nothing at all, but instead just listen.
To paraphrase that well known expert Winnie the Pooh: “Don’t underestimate the value of Doing Nothing, of just going along, listening to all the things you can’t hear, and just being supportive.”
Contact us for more responses to infertility comments.