Connections of the Heart
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Adoption Research Reveals Top Concerns of Parents
Among couples who make the decision to adopt, infertility is a contributing factor in a majority of cases. It can be a difficult obstacle to face, one fraught with emotional ups and downs.
There is no surefire way to ease yourself down this rocky emotional road, but keeping the following in mind is sure to help:
1) Allow Yourself To Acknowledge That It’s A Crisis
There is no shame in feeling distraught, heartbroken, and in crisis mode when coping with infertility. It’s one of the most difficult challenges you will face in life – and the best way to face challenges is NOT by pretending they don’t exist.
It’s okay to acknowledge the emotional toll this is taking on you. Doing so is one of the first steps in learning to cope.
2) Avoid Blaming Yourself
There is no such thing as blame when it comes to infertility. It’s a hard feeling to shake, but if you get caught up in that kind of thinking you will only put yourself into a downward spiral of negativity.
There are no “should have” or “could haves,” there is only moving forward. Instead of thinking about what you did wrong (hint: you did nothing wrong), think about what your next step will be.
3) Seek Out Support
Support groups for those coping with infertility are plentiful. Don’t be shy about seeking them out. You’ll find them online or your doctor can refer you to one.
Sometimes, simply knowing that others are having the same experience you are can lift a lot of that weight off your shoulders.
4) It’s Okay To Decline Invitations
If your current struggles are too painful for you, it’s okay to politely decline invitations to baby showers and other activities that may trigger a bout of depression.
There is no shame in avoiding something that will be painful for you. The important people in your life will understand.
5) Be Supportive of One Another
During this difficult time, it’s important for you and your partner to be supportive of one another.
You may not necessarily be on the same page when it comes to how you both feel – this is especially true if the infertility can be linked to one of you specifically – but you CAN be on the same page when it comes to showing love and compassion to one another.
Your future depends on both of you.
6) Give Yourself Limits
To avoid getting caught in a never-ending cycle of disappointment, decide how long you’re willing to keep trying before you begin to explore alternatives like adoption.
Coping with infertility issues can be painful. Only you can judge how long you want to weather that storm before deciding that it’s time to seek another way to expand your family.
7) Be Realistic About the Future
Optimism is a powerful tool in helping get yourself through difficult times, but it must be balanced with realism.
After talks with your doctor, partner, and experts you may be dealing with, it’s important to develop a realistic view of what your future looks like when it comes to the issue of infertility. That view need not be positive or negative. All it needs to be is realistic.
Finally, remember that infertility may be a crisis, but it’s not a dead end. You have a love-filled future ahead of you, you just need to decide what that future looks like.
Samantha was adopted from China nearly twenty one years ago. Read about her life as an adoptee, her connection to China and the role that her family has played in helping her become the woman she is today!
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