This week we celebrate National Infertility Awareness Week. This year’s theme is “Don’t Ignore Infertility.” There is so much pain around infertility beyond the physical because there are also emotional and social implications. Unfortunately there is a lot of ignorance around infertility and awareness is key to breaking down barriers and building healing bridges.
What you can do if you have struggled with infertility:
- Speak up – Share your story about infertility. Whether you blog, tweet, belong to a special interest group or teach a class you can help people open their eyes to this issue and step out of their ignorance.
- Find support – Don’t be afraid to seek support. Infertility can be a lonely journey. Find a support group you can share your journey with in a welcoming environment.
- Get involved – There are many road blocks from healthcare and the government to helping infertile couples to become pregnant. Write to your local representative to have policies changed.
What you can do even if you don’t struggle with infertility:
- Educate yourself – Just because you don’t struggle with infertility, doesn’t mean you should be ignorant of it. Educate yourself to all that is involved in infertility so your knowledge can prevent you from making insensitive comments like; “Yeah we got pregnant at first shot.” “We just think about it & we are pregnant.” Or probably the worst – “Don’t stress, I’m sure one day you will be able to experience the joy of motherhood. It’s the best feeling ever.”
- Make a donation – Funding is needed for infertility research. Because many infertility treatments are not covered by insurance, couples spend a lot of money on fulfilling their dreams to become parents. Consider making a donation to help bring needed programs and services to couples dealing with infertility.
- Be sensitive – If you know someone is struggling with infertility be sensitive to that, but don’t leave them out of your own parenting experiences. That will only make them feel more alienated.
For more information on Infertility Awareness Week, please visit the NIAW website.