Infertility does a number on your marriage. It could have ruined our marriage, but infertility actually strengthened our marriage. Today I’m thankful for how it brought my husband and I closer.
We learned a lot about ourselves and our marriage. We failed many many times, but we ultimately came out stronger as we had to rely on one another. Here are a few things that we learned to keep infertility from ruining our marriage.
7 Ways to Keep Infertility from Ruining Your Marriage
Communication ranks as THE MOST important way to keep infertility from ruining your marriage. With so many emotions, decisions, frustrations, defeats and victories during the process, you need someone to process with–someone you can share openly with. Once the communications stops, walls will form within your marriage making communication more difficult in the future.
2. Share Honestly
You and your spouse will have times when you don’t see eye to eye. Communicate honestly about what you feel or think. Choose the right moment to share honestly, but don’t hold back. Keeping your true feelings and thoughts to yourself will ultimately lead to frustration and resentment down the road.
On the flip side, give your spouse the space and freedom to speak honestly without judgement or anger. They need to feel safe to share what’s on their heart and know that they will be listened to.
Infertility treatments and conditions carry many complex details, procedures and options. Take the time to research your options. Having knowledge (and sharing it with your spouse) will give you both a better foundation for making your decisions.
If your spouse is more knowledgeable than yourself, take the initiative to learn either by asking questions or looking into it yourself. This not only instills more confidence, but also exhibits support for the process.
4. Focus On Your Physical Relationship
When facing infertility, your physical relationship will at times seem scheduled and timed (and of course this is for a good reason). However, make sure to take time to nurture your physical relationship outside of necessitated times.
5. Establish Your Financial Boundaries
Many insurance companies do not cover any infertility related costs — even diagnostic procedures or testing like labwork. As a result, you may end up paying out-of-pocket for every little visit, medicine, or procedure.
First, check with your insurance and see if they cover any infertility treatments. Make sure you understand what your insurance actually covers.
Regardless of your coverage, discuss beforehand your budget for infertility treatments. Once you get deep in the process you may have a difficult time knowing how much longer to continue, especially if finances are tight. Discussing the financial side proactively will allow you to process more clearly during an emotionally charged journey.
6. Establish Your Emotional Boundaries
You and your husband know yourselves best–what you can take emotionally and how strong you can be for one another. Infertility pulls at your emotions and can become very discouraging and depressing. Consider how each step of the journey will make each of you feel.
Prepare yourself for the different decisions you may have to make. Kim Kardashian recently shared of her previous struggle with infertility and knows that IVF may be in her future. She and Kayne West have prepared themselves in advance for the process of IVF by knowing it may be an option.
Know your boundaries for different options you have before you. If the scheduling, order, and procedures involved with the process of IVF will stress you out in an unhealthy way, you may consider stopping treatments before initiating IVF.
If the mood swings that (most likely) come with hormone supplements, etc, will push you over the edge, take that into consideration. Most of all, be aware of your emotions and your spouses emotions — don’t leave either out to dry. They can be a litmus test of the strength of your marriage.
7. Show Sensitivity
You and your spouse will experience different thoughts and emotions at different times. You will process the news and findings different ways. Your coping strategies may be polar opposite. Or you may react exactly the same way through the whole process.
Regardless, show sensitivity to your spouse and his/her emotions (or lack of!). Even if what they feel doesn’t make sense to you, support them and help with the processing. Don’t write them off as irrational, overemotional, or cold. Show wisdom and love with your comments.
As you enter into the infertility journey or perhaps you find yourself in the middle of it right now, please take these things into consideration to keep from ruining your marriage. Remain strong together and you can get through anything — no matter how difficult it may be.
To read past posts on infertility click below: