I’m not going to tell you to “just relax”, don’t worry.
However – if you want to stop obsessing with getting pregnant every month, learning how to deal with the disappointment of not conceiving each month is important.
Personally, I myself spent many CD1 days crying and getting more and more desperate that yet another month had gone by. Certain months would pass and I would realize that I would not be having a baby this calendar year or by the time I turned a certain age.
With a little bit of work, you can prepare yourself for potential disappointment and shift the focus to what you can do to change your situation instead of feeling that everything is out of your control.
During this time of year, coping with infertility during the holidays is essential to getting through family gatherings, parties and work events.
If you are forced to attend events after a BFN, the tips below will help you gather your strength and courage.
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Today on Seaside Sundays, I’m pleased to welcome Denise Wiesner, founder of the Natural Healing and Acupuncture Clinic in West Los Angeles to talk to us about how to deal with the disappointment of not conceiving when you want to.
Denise is the author of a new book called Conceiving with Love: A Whole-Body Approach to Creating Intimacy, Reigniting Passion, and Increasing Fertility
Praise for Denise’s book from some well-known fertility experts:
How To Deal With The Disappointment Of Not Conceiving
Disappointment affects us all. There are no exceptions. Perhaps you are struggling with trying to have a baby, and the immense disappointment that can come from yet another negative pregnancy test or a failed fertility treatment.
Whatever the cause of your disappointment, this post may help you.
I was cleaning with my bookkeeper and finally got around to organizing my big grey file cabinet – the home of many loose papers in untitled folders that I had been avoiding for years.
Endless receipts and warranties for Walkmans (a relic from the 80’s), video cameras, and old TVs were tossed into my throwaway pile. But then I came across a green folder of my writings, and as I flipped through the folder, one piece caught my attention.
It was called “Pregnancy Preparation and Disappointment.”
I began to read this piece out loud to my bookkeeper, who just three months prior to our meeting, lost her 53-year-old husband to complications of Multiple Sclerosis.
Even though the piece was about pregnancy preparation, its words of wisdom were applicable to loss in general, and as I read, tears streamed down her face.
It was a poignant moment, as the ending had been written by my late husband, Alex, whose words touched both of us deeply.
One of my patients who had done her second IVF had just gotten news that it didn’t work. Her Doctor told her it was implantation issues. I wondered if anyone really knew why a pregnancy happened or didn’t happen.
I realized that I needed to remind myself about life’s lessons, including disappointment, so I could help my patient.
Just then, my four-year-old walked into the room and exclaimed: “I am going to win my soccer game.” I asked him: “What happens if you don’t win?”
To which he replied with a flat definition of losing. So I rephrased my question, “How do you FEEL when you don’t win?” He shrugged his shoulders and said, “Nothing.”
Out of the mouths of babes. It clearly wasn’t going to ruin his day if he lost. Four-year-olds have a way of just moving on.
As Martin Luther King, Jr. said so eloquently, “We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.” That’s a big truth to live by.
10 Tips for coping with not getting pregnant
Here are my ten tips for dealing with disappointment when trying to conceive:
1.Sorrow is a necessity of life
Just as life is full of joy, happiness, contentment and love, life is also full of suffering such as pain, fear, and anxiety. In order to fully appreciate true joy, we have to experience sorrow. So live life to its fullness and embrace it all.
2. The only certainty in life is uncertainty.
When things don’t go as planned, learn from the situation. There is always an opportunity for personal growth in any situation. See what lessons you can learn, and keep that age-old saying in mind: “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.”
3. Make the most of the situation
Welcome opportunities by making the most of the cards you are dealt and hold the space inside yourself, your container, for all your emotions and thoughts.
4. Share yourself.
Seek out support from friends, loved ones, therapists, healers and books. You never know who may just have the perfect wisdom to help you through a difficult situation, or has even been in a similar situation.
5. Write it out
Writing can be a therapeutic tool to express your feelings. Feelings are an integral part of life and writing in a journal can help you mindfully watch your thoughts and feelings, process them and not stuff them down.
6. Cultivate patience
What seems like our biggest disappointment at the time can transform into our greatest learning experiences at another time.
7. Adversity is a stepping stone
Not achieving a goal can act as the irritant necessary for something beautiful to emerge, like how an oyster creates a pearl from a grain of sand.
8. Have courage
“C-c-c-courage,” said the Cowardly Lion in The Wizard of Oz. Remembering this can help us when we are in doubt. Know you can muster all the courage it takes to keep moving forward.
9. Enjoy the ride
We can often get fixated on a goal or result, but remember that it is not only the destination that is important but also the journey.
Alex’s words of wisdom: “In our culture, we are focused often on external achievement. As a result, we scarcely have the language to express disappointment, grief, shame and loss. We are taught that these are private struggles. To be able to express our true feelings to ourselves and others – this is healing. In fact, if we are not able to express ourselves it can lead to ill health, emotional blockage and wasted time in unsupportive activities and bad relationships.”
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