Here they come again, those Sundays in May and June. Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. Didn’t we just go through this, calendar? Couldn’t we skip them this year?
When you’re struggling with infertility, these two days can amplify the frustration of not being able to create the family you’ve imagined. You may have figured out your own ways of coping, but here are some more self-care tips for making these parenthood celebration days a little easier.
- Let your emotions be what they are. If you’re sad, be sad. If you’re angry, be angry. Stuffing or fighting a feeling usually just gives it fuel. Notice it, feel it, and then watch it pass through you.
- If someone asks, “When are you going to have kids?” it’s ok to give as much or as little information as you want. You can answer with “That’s a great question!” and leave it at that or say something like “Well, it’s been more difficult than I thought it would be, but it’s something I really want.”
- If you have a trusted friend who has struggled with infertility, connect with that person in a text or private message. Talking to someone who has experienced what you’re going through can help you move through the thoughts and emotions these days bring up. The conversation doesn’t have to be long. Even a few words between you can help you feel supported.
- Treat yourself—and your partner, if you’re in a relationship—as you would want your child to treat you on mom’s or dad’s day. Buy yourself something that would bring you joy. Make breakfast in bed for your partner. Go out for a leisurely brunch. If being at a restaurant with lots of families feels like too much, get carryout from your favorite place and eat it in the quiet of your own space.
- Get some exercise—ideally outside. Whether you go on a brisk walk, run a few miles, or take a long bike ride, the exertion will bring balance to your brain. And it’s easier to reset when you’re in nature. There’s room to breathe, and breathing is good.
- Remember that thoughts create feelings. If you get stuck in a self-talk loop of “It’ll never happen” and “This is so not fair,” acknowledge that these are legitimate thoughts and then counter them with “It can happen” and “I am not the only one who has struggled with this. I’m not alone.”
The fertility specialists at Spring Creek also can connect you with support groups and other resources that can help you through days like these when you need a few more shoulders to lean on.