How to get through Mother’s Day if you have fertility issues

Mother’s Day is a time to celebrate our wonderful mothers – but it can also be a source of pain for women who want to be mothers and can’t.

Fertility Network UK (FNUK) estimates that one in six couples in the UK will experience difficulty conceiving, ranging from medical conditions affecting one or both partners to unexplained infertility. For reasons. And even those women who do manage to conceive may not become mothers due to problems, including recurrent miscarriages.

And that means Mother’s Day can be a stark reminder that while there are countless mothers out there celebrating, many women with fertility issues aren’t among them.

“Mother’s Day can be one of the hardest days of the year for anyone struggling to conceive,” says Gwenda Burns, chief executive of FNUK. “It can add to the loneliness that people often experience when they’re going through fertility issues, and can feel like a cruel reminder of everything you want most. .

“It’s hard to avoid the constant reminders of that day, which add to the sense of loss and grief.”

What Burns suggests is that women struggling with fertility issues can help get through Mother’s Day…

Recognize that your feelings are normal.

Most women who want children but are struggling to have them, or who have had to accept that they will be childless, will not enjoy Mother’s Day, except to celebrate it with their mother. Try to make it special.

“It’s important to recognize that it’s not going to be an easy day if you’re dealing with fertility issues,” Burns emphasizes. “Recognize that your emotional reactions are valid, and be kind to yourself.”

Plan the day

Instead of just waking up with a sinking feeling that it’s Mother’s Day and feeling miserable, Burns suggests thinking about what you’re going to do with yourself beforehand. “Although it can feel like it’s impossible for Mother’s Day to be anything but stressful, if you make a plan ahead of time, you have some control over the day,” she explains.

Do what you want

There may be a lot of Mother’s Day-themed events going on, but it’s okay – and common – to avoid them and do what you want to do instead, whether it’s booking a pampering treatment, eating out. To go out, or not to go out. Anything different. Burns advises: “You don’t have to do anything you don’t want to, and it’s okay to turn down invitations. If you want to go out, maybe go for a walk in the spring sunshine.

Give social media a miss.

There are countless references to Mother’s Day celebrations on social media, so if you don’t want to see pictures of huge bouquets of flowers and boxes of chocolates given to very lucky mothers, it’s easy to stay away from social platforms. Is. “Taking a break from social media can help,” advises Burns.

You are not alone

You’re not the only one who won’t enjoy Mother’s Day, so whether it’s catching up with infertile friends, or connecting with people in fertility groups, it can help to talk to other women who feel the same way as you. feel

“It can be a good time to connect with other people who share similar experiences and understand how you feel,” says Burns, who suggests trying Fertility Network groups and online meetups. are doing.” “Don’t forget, Fertility Network UK is your charity and we are here for you at this time, so please remember you are not alone,” she adds.

Fertility Network UK’s free support line is open five days a week from 10am to 4pm and is run by two ex-fertility nurses. Call 0121 323 5025 (Diane, Monday/Wednesday/Friday) and 07816 086694 (Janet, Tuesday/Thursday).

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