This is National Infertility Awareness Week, a movement to raise awareness about the disease of infertility affecting 7.3 million Americans. RESOLVE is a community for women and men with infertility and provides information, support and opportunities to take action. Check out the RESOLVE website for more information on infertility and how you can make a difference for you and others experiencing infertility. There is a wealth of information on this website–a lot more than even a year ago!
You can find the following:
- listing of support groups
- mental health professionals that specialize in infertility
- suggested coping techniques for managing stress
- suggestions on how to talk about what you are going through with family/friends
- information for family/friends re: etiquette and myths vs. facts
- online support communities
- a calendar of events around the country
Infertility is a major cause of anxiety and depression. With the number of individuals faced with infertility today, it is no wonder that antenatal and postpartum depression rates are as high as they are today. As such, it is very important that you seek support in getting through this difficult and highly stressful time of your life. Support can be in the form of family and/or friends that you feel are empathetic (i.e., have gone through this themselves) and/or non-judgmental.
If you’re not sure whom to talk to among your circle of family/friends, visit the RESOLVE website and look up mental health professionals in your area that have experience with helping couples get through infertility and infertility treatments. Getting this kind of support can help prevent your anxiety levels from reaching a point that– should you (and I really hope you do) get pregnant– you could be heading into pregnancy with a great risk of developing perinatal depression.
The absolute worst thing you can do is keep your feelings of grief and anxiety to yourself, and in fact, doing so can put you at greater risk for developing a perinatal mood disorder!
Refer to my earlier post for more info on this topic.