It all starts with the seed right? Well, not exactly, first we need to make sure the ground is fertile, well-nourished and receptive to enable growth. We hear talk of a “fertile womb garden” sometimes in holistic practises and therapies, but how about the concept of starting with a fertile relationship with which to grow a baby?
As I’m sure many of you are all too painfully aware, trying to conceive can take the fun out of a lot of things and it’s a subject I’ve talked about in different ways recently. The pressures this puts on your relationship can be huge and if we’re not careful we can start to unravel some of the good stuff that we’ve worked so hard to achieve together. Some of the things that I noticed at the beginning of our journey that we had to keep checking in with were:
Maintaining honest and respectful communication
Making time for each other
Enjoying each other
Connecting back with who you are, with things that make you happy and bring you joy is so important. As is not losing touch with your partner on an emotional level during infertility. Trying to make a baby when this balance is significantly out of kilter will naturally be more difficult and will then harbour even more frustrations inside your mind and body, and there you have your vicious cycle.
How to keep your relationship fertile
- Remember the excitement you felt the first time you talked about having children together
It’s amazing how quickly trying for a baby goes from a beautiful, exciting, loving adventure to a calculated, frustrating and urgent need. This pressure will not help matters or your relationship so try and grasp some of that initial excitement again – talk about the first conversations you had with your partner about having a baby and how you felt then, what was going through your mind, how connected you felt to each other and bring some of those feelings to your life now.
- Don’t compare
It’s so easy to compare your relationship to other people’s and start picking away at the negatives, especially when you’re frustrated and things aren’t going to plan. Finding fault with each other will just add to the pain so instead try to recognise the bits of your relationship that really work and you’re grateful for, even if it’s the really small stuff like “I appreciate the cup of tea that my partner makes for me in the morning”. It’s the little things that help make the big things easier to deal with!
- Try and see where your partner is coming from
When things aren’t going to plan, it’s hard to be objective about the situation and you can find your mind racing with a million thoughts, plans, ideas about what you’re should/shouldn’t be doing but don’t forget to check in with your partner too. Often men and women approach fertility issues differently and trying to understand each other’s perspective is really important -what works for one of you might not work for the other so listen to each other and it’ll make everyone’s life a lot easier!
- Remember that you’re both in this together
I’ve definitely been guilty of playing the old “it’s happening to my body, so I’m the one suffering” card, because quite honestly that’s what it feels like! But the reality is that we are both in this baby making thing together and yes I have to take all the horrendous drugs and have the counselling and sort my chakras out and water my fertile womb but my husband also gets affected by the struggle, seeing me in distress and pain and the endless failed treatments. I’m not alone in this, he feels it all too and sometimes it’s really hard for him to always have to be the strong one. Recognising this has made me more considerate and our relationship more honest.
- Remember to enjoy each other and make time for fun
Put the schedule down and remember to enjoy each other and have some fun! Your life doesn’t have to be constantly dictated to by ovulation dates and cervical mucus (!) Needless to say there’s nothing like those words to dampen a Friday night in! Remember why you fell in love, talk about your first date, get the sexy lingerie out and enjoy!
How fertile is your relationship? Do you recognise any of these behaviours in yourself? Did changing your attitude to fertility result in any positive changes for you? Wherever you are on your fertility journey, I’d love to hear from you!