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Hello and welcome to the Psychology Corner. If you’re reading this blog I’m guessing
it’s because you are wondering about the experience of infertility and maybe the
feelings it engenders. I’ve been doing infertility counselling for over 25 years and, while
pregnancy rates have increased dramatically in that time, the feelings it causes in
people have sadly remained unchanged. Infertility is a profoundly difficult and painful
experience whether you are worried you may have to deal with it eventually, are dealing
with it currently, or have dealt with it in the past. You may even be a person who knows
and loves someone who is dealing with infertility and want to better understand the
experience.

What I’d like to do in the Psychology Corner is talk about the kinds of things individuals
and couples have brought to my office on a regular basis over these many years, the
things that are ‘normal’ within the context of an infertility clinic but absolutely do not
feel normal when they are happening to you. This is a pretty big list. I think of people
who have described months of trying to become pregnant without success and their
fear it will never happen. I think of hearing what it’s like to get Facebook pregnancy
announcements complete with ultrasound pictures when all you wanted to do was
check email, of being invited to yet another baby shower, of being asked when you’re
going to start trying when you’ve been trying and you’re in the midst of infertility
treatment. Mostly I think about the sometimes overwhelming sadness that infertility
brings and the resoluteness and bravery of the people who are dealing with it on a daily,
monthly, and sometimes yearly basis. Those people have plenty to say and it helps!

Psychologists who work in infertility know infertility is not caused by psychological
problems. A medical problem? Yes. A life crisis? Yes. An emotional earthquake with
aftershocks? Yes. Psychological problems do not cause infertility. Infertility causes
psychological distress. There are reasons for this and things that can help you manage
as you navigate through this very personal experience. There is hope and a lot of it and
there is also support.

So, welcome! I will be posting every two weeks about topics of interest to people
dealing with infertility with a particular focus on building resilience on the infertility
journey.

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