Recently, I bit the bullet and made an appointment with a psychologist who is trained in infertility-related counselling. At the time it felt like it was what I needed. I was struggling more emotionally, than I was used to and I was feeling a little lost in it all. She was absolutely amazing, down to earth, funny and supportive of the situation. But sitting there, talking to her, it really made me feel as though it wasn’t for me. Now don’t get me wrong, she is incredible at her job, and there is absolutely NO shame in needing outside support, but I just don’t think therapy is for me when it comes to our struggle with infertility.
After my hour with her and thinking about all we discussed, it really made me realize just what my true outlet for it all is: Writing, blogging, Facebook posts to end the stigma around it. My infertility outlet is helping others see just how supported they truly can be through this journey and sharing my personal story helps to raise awareness.
For a really long time I thought miscarriage and infertility were something I had to face on my own.
I’m sure many of you understand that feeling because it’s such an isolating one. When you first have a loss or first get the diagnosis, it can honestly feel as though you’re the only one in the world struggling with this situation.
Our miscarriage occurred back in June of 2014 and at that time I knew absolutely no one going through it or who had gone through it. In the months that followed I found myself on message boards and social apps interacting with women who had been through the same. Then, almost two years later, the PCOS diagnosis came and once again I felt isolated. As before, I turned to a form of social media to connect with other women, and to find comfort from those who understood.
Thinking back, that may have been a better time to seek outside help, to guide me through those first initial steps.
Our family knew very little of our journey, and we didn’t really know how to broach the subject. It was all so new and unfamiliar to us. So it was nice to be able to talk to people anonymously about my feelings, fears, hopes, but at the same time, I felt so disconnected. There was no one in my life dealing with what Aaron and I were going through, or so I thought. We didn’t know how to include our families and friends in the discussion of what we needed to do to start our family. I felt like if I tried talking about it it would just make everyone uncomfortable, but then it’s almost like a switch went up and I kind of realized I didn’t care if it was an uncomfortable situation, it was mine and it was important.
It was kind of like pulling off a band-aid.
I went fast and hard. I made a post on social media and never looked back. I know for my husband, it was hard for him to wrap his head around me wanting to put our personal lives out there for “everyone” to see. But then the messages from friends started rolling in, about their own personal struggles and losses, and over time even Aaron grew to see just how important it was to share what we were dealing with. And not just for me, but other couples as well.
Sharing our struggle through these blogs, as well as my personal Facebook page has helped me more over the last couple years than any other resource. However, I am well aware that that isn’t the best route for everyone dealing with infertility as we all have our own outlets. Whatever works for you is the perfect thing, whether it’s talking to a professional, a friend, or not really talking about it at all. Maybe your outlet is knitting, or drawing or listening to music to decompress. There is no right or wrong way to deal with infertility. It’s an uphill battle that we’re all dealing with together, so just do what you need to do!
By Brittenay Bell, journeytobabybell.wordpress.com