This week, April 22 - 28, is National Infertility Awareness Week. The theme this year is one that is so important for all those not struggling with infertility.
"Don't Ignore Infertility"
Infertility is one of the hardest things a couple will have to go through. Support is so crucial so the process doesn't swallow them.
For those that haven't had to struggle through infertility, whether primary or secondary, it's hard to know how to support a friend. One in eight couples now suffer through infertility, whereas a couple years ago it was one in ten. It may not seem like a lot, but chances are you know at least one couple that is having trouble getting pregnant and/or keeping a pregnancy.
One of the best things you can do is not ignore their infertility. For a lot, it feels like they are failing. It may not be logical, but one thing that is so important is raising a family and when you can't? It is so incredibly difficult to live with. Friends and acquaintances you were close to pull away, and that can make this process even harder.
Don't ignore their struggle. You can still be happy for yourself and your family while supporting them when they need it most. Don't offer platitudes to make their situation not seem as huge. Most personal stories and advice that I've been given in the four years we've been trying to have a second child leave me in tears because they're just a pat on the head. They're stories of "oh this woman I knew" and "just relax and it will happen".
If you are wondering what you can do? Become educated on this issue that so many people are struggling with. Be there for them. Learn what you can do as a family member and friend. And if you're still wondering? Ask them what you can do. Even if it is just a simple thing like remembering a date that's important to them while they go through this.
In the end, just don't ignore. What an important message, which you can take to other parts of your life.
And for those struggling through infertility, their is hope and their is support. Resolve is an amazing organization and a great place to start. And I am always available if you need someone to talk to (firstname.lastname@example.org). And in the end, let's break the stigma around infertility and realize love and support are so much more important than struggling alone.