The Mighty Logo

5 Types of Helpful People to Have in Your Infertility Village

The most helpful emails in health
Browse our free newsletters

They say “it takes a village” to raise a child. While I haven’t raised one yet I can only assume that to be true. But I do know it takes a village to conceive a child too.

When you go through in vitro fertilization (IVF) or any artificial reproductive technology (ART), it’s important to have people who support you and your mission. My husband and I have been lucky enough to have a few types of different people in our infertility village. I hope if you’re on a similar journey, you have them too.

The One Who’s Positive

No matter how positive a person you are before ART, it can suck the positive life force right out of you in so many ways. I had a friend who always had a positive attitude, cheerful thoughts surrounding ART and our chances to have a family. For some that amount of positivity could be grating, but as it always came from a place of love I didn’t mind. She also saved her daughter’s baby things for me because she knew we’d need them one day. When my husband and announced our pregnancy she never said, “I told you so.” Great person to have in your corner!

The One With Medical Knowledge

Everyone needs that friend who’s not a doctor, yet seems to have a lot of medical knowledge and knows someone who does too. I called her during my first stim cycle, concerned about the consequences of a small air bubble in the syringe. Sure enough, she sent a photo to her sister who is a nurse sister to confirm that in sub-q injections, a small air bubble is fine. This friend also had the “privilege” to serve as backup to help with my progesterone shots (in the butt!) should I not be able to give them to myself. Trust me. You need someone willing to find the answers, willing to let you moon them… all in the name of making a baby.

The One Who Thinks It’s Normal

This is a couple friend of ours who we’ve known for years. If I was over their house during a stim cycle, there was no “where are you going?” when I’d excuse myself from the table and head to their bathroom with my bag of meds. There was no issue when I needed to do my shots before the movie (which made us a little late). It was simply business as usual. Plus she and I work together too, which made rescheduling meetings that much easier. I recommend confiding in a trusted co-worker if only to have someone to understand the real reason you’re not drinking at the work Christmas party.

The One You Never See

We all need someone you know well enough to confide in but who either lives far away or is a simple acquaintance. I had two of these! My cousin in North Carolina and oddly enough a mom friend of hers who lives near me. I met that woman only once but this woman has her son thanks to ART. Coincidentally through the same practice my husband and I used! She answered random questions at all hours of the day, cried with me after negative test results came back, yet never pushed me to do or say more than I was willing. Sometimes you want to talk to a good friend or a family member, but sometimes things are easier to explain to someone you hardly know. Especially if that person has traveled the same path you’re taking.

The One You Always See

I don’t always see my bestie (sometimes we go a whole couple of weeks between visits) but we talk a lot! She was the one there with me the first time I did the sub-q injections. She was the one I called when I couldn’t reach my hubs after the nurse thought I might be experiencing DVT and needed to get to the emergency room. Fortunately, I wasn’t, but it didn’t stop her from spending several hours in the ER waiting for my hubs to show and then further waiting with him for the test results. She was also the first one (after the hubs) I told when it had finally worked and our miracle baby was on her way. When you’re there for all the pain, you more than earned the first spot in line for all the joy!

Hopefully, you have these types of folks in your tribe. If you’re lucky enough to have even a couple of them, it will make everything just a bit better.

Photo credit: September15/Getty Images

Originally published: September 20, 2018
Want more of The Mighty?
You can find even more stories on our Home page. There, you’ll also find thoughts and questions by our community.
Take Me Home