One of the most common challenges for couples is the reality of facing infertility together and not being able to conceive. For many people, it’s a devastating disappointment when hopes and dreams of starting a family are put on hold or even made impossible.
To remain close and connected as a couple, there are a few ways to support each other with the disappointment and avoid creating distance within the relationship.
Avoid Blaming Your Partner
When you’re suffering from the pain of not being able to have children, it can be easy to cope by blaming your spouse. Avoid placing the blame on your partner, especially in moments of anger. Words spoken in anger can be remembered for a lifetime, and will only cause further damage in an already delicate situation.
Whether you are the partner with fertility problems or not, you must realize these things are beyond human control and blaming each other doesn’t fix anything.
Give It Time
It’s common for each partner to experience their own set of emotions and feelings while grieving the reality of infertility. While you may feel like you want to keep trying and dive right into fertility treatments or adoption papers, your partner might need more time to process the situation. Once any infertility issues surface, it’s best to take a little time to emotionally handle the situation on your own time.
Give both yourself and your partner some time to come to terms. No matter how eager you might be to move to the next step necessary for children. Make it a point to listen to each other and offer support, even if you’re in a different stage with the process or have had the conversation before. Avoid taking it personally if your partner becomes angry or frustrated, which will allow them to move through the stages of mourning and feel comfortable coming to you for help.
To protect your marriage and relationship with each other, it’s important to seek professional help with a marriage and family therapist. Having a relationship coach will help to work out the struggles and equip both of you with tools allowing you to remain supportive and close with one another.
Verbalizing each of your feelings will strengthen the communication in your relationship and will reduce the chances of separating. Infertility is just one of countless issues that puts stress on a marriage, so seeking therapy will allow you and your partner to openly communicate instead of turning to anger or silence.
Discuss Other Options
Whether you want to explore other alternatives to having a child or are content with continuing your lives together without starting a family, it’s important to discuss your new vision for the future and other options you’ll take. As mentioned, you might need to wait for the initial shock to wear off, but eventually, you and your partner need to openly discuss what you plan to do about your struggle or inability to conceive.
Learn to compromise and be honest about both of your desires so each partner can be happy in the relationship. From starting a new business to traveling to other countries, there are several dreams that can revive each partner and make it easier to continue to be happy if children are not an option.
If you plan to start fertility treatments, or want to adopt, these are things you need to discuss at length to make sure you are prepared for the process and both on the same page. Having a vision for your marriage will allow you to refocus and stay positive with the process.
One of the most common challenges for couples facing infertility is keeping the romance alive after dealing with the disappointment. Finding out you or your spouse is unable to conceive can often be detrimental to the relationship and make it difficult to remain strong as a unit. At points, it can be difficult to spend time with one another or hold a conversation because of the heartbreak that follows an infertility diagnosis.
Schedule a night where you can have a date once a week, which will allow you to get out of the home and have fun together. Make it a point to talk about other topics besides having children and learn to stay thankful for each of your roles in your lives.
If your plans for children are on hold or too stressful to handle at the current time, this is a perfect opportunity to focus on each other. Spending time together and keeping the romance alive will bring you closer together, while focusing on your disappointment will eventually cause you to drift apart.
Many people don’t realize the strain infertility can put on a marriage, until they find the issue has put a large wedge between them. It will definitely take a conscious effort to deal with infertility, but as long you and your spouse plan to face the problem together, you can continue to strengthen the relationship.
It will not only allow you to revive your romance and love, but it will make it possible to heal and move on with your lives – no matter how you choose to proceed. The information for this article was provided by the professionals at Santa Monica Fertility, who offer options such as in vitro fertilization for couples who are struggling to conceive.