Where can I go for emotional support during my fertility journey?

Finding out there is an issue with your fertility is one of the most devastating things you will ever be told. But it is only the start of the journey that will make you feel like you are alone. Which is why IVF babble is here to tell you to stop listening to those thoughts and join our community

Below is a handful of tips and tricks to help you stop feeling isolated and set you on the path to finding new friends for life…

Finding a friend

Take a look at the TTC Buddy section on Babble Prime. This platform (a brand new ivf babble initiative) allows you to find a friend who has experienced exactly the same as you. You can filter your search and connect with a buddy either in your neighbourhood or on the other side of the globe who totally understands how you are feeling.

Finding a support group

While on Babble Prime, head to the directory and search for support. Simply type in your location and how far you want to search. A list of support groups will appear.

Finding a counsellor

Again, you can find a counsellor on Babble Prime, but in the next couple of months, we will be including the technology on Babble Prime to ensure that you can access the professional emotional support you need from a counsellor, when you need it – from the comfort and privacy of your own home.

In the meantime though, you can also find a professional fertility counsellor by heading to Bica , (the British Infertility Counselling Association) are a registered charity and the only professional infertility counselling Association recognised by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority and the British Fertility Society in the UK or Resolve in the USA.

There is also the National Fertility Society, run by qualified counsellor, Sandra Bateman, which offers a directory to find a counsellor in your area, along with support and guidance for you while on your journey.

Contact a national charity

Fertility Network UK is a leading charity that supports anyone on a fertility journey. They offer advice, guidance and a helpline for anyone who needs additional support. They have regional support groups, which hold regular meetings and workshops around the UK.

Endometriosis UK is a charity that supports sufferers of the debilitating condition. It offers support, information, fact sheets and advice, as well as the latest news and research from scientists across the globe.

The Miscarriage Association offers support to anyone who has had or been affected by miscarriage and pregnancy loss. It offers a helpline that is manned from 9am to 4pm, advice, information and guidance to anyone who needs it. It also has a forum for people to discuss their issues, latest news and research and campaigns for a better understanding of the emotional distress of pregnancy loss and bereavement.

The Dovecote Community and Gateway Women offers support to women who are childless not by choice. Many women make the heartbreaking decision to stop fertility treatment and live life without children. Both these incredible organisations, run by Kelly de Silva and Jody Day, respectively, offer much needed support to the thousands of women who decide to live without children. They show how life can be fulfilling and empowering using a variety of techniques and therapies. Search for both organisations via Facebook or Google.

Going forward

If your cycle does fail, take the time to mourn. Communicate your feelings effectively with your partner, family and friends who support you without criticism or judgement. They won’t always know what to say, but just tell them to be there for you, to make that cuppa, to give you that cuddle.

Foster resilience in yourself and others, by connecting with the IVF babble community, fertility counsellors or support groups. There is no shame in asking for help – talking is one of the most powerful coping strategies there is.

Discuss all of the points above regarding your IVF treatment with your doctor and develop an action plan.

Most importantly, be kind to yourself. And always remember, although it might not feel like it, you’re not alone.

There are thousands of people going through the same journey as you on our social media pages, log on to @IVFbabble on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter to #findyourtribe

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