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Celebrating Valentine’s Day for couples going through infertility treatment

hearts and chocolates

Anya Sizer of the London Women’s Clinic

   

Anya Sizer of the London Women’s Clinic offers advice to couples undergoing fertility treatment on how to use the event to help ease the stress of undergoing assisted reproduction.


Couples with fertility problems can celebrate Valentine’s Day too

Valentine’s Day is nearly upon us again, and the shops are full of oversized bears, love-hearts sweets and comedy boxer shorts, all designed to show the one you love just how much you care. As with many other special days in the calendar, when you are going through fertility treatment, Valentine’s Day can seem like one more thing to avoid and one more pressure.


But Valentine’s Day can be a helpful reminder for couples going through infertility treatment. A reminder that underneath all the injections, scans, clinic visits, etc, there is an ‘us’ that can so easily be overlooked.


Stress is inevitable when undergoing infertility treatment

Couples are often surprised by the toll infertility is taking on their relationship and wonder if this is normal.  What I have found, both personally and professionally, is that it is almost inevitable that it will put a strain on even the strongest of relationships. We should expect fertility treatment to be tough, but we should not lose sight of why we are doing it in the first place. We must not lose sight of the other person.


Tips to help couples undergoing assisted reproduction to get through Valentine’s Day

A few tips then to help you this Valentine’s Day if fertility treatment seems to be taking over your life and relationship:


  • Try not to expect too much from each other. You are both going through a tough time and will need all the support you can get. There may be times when one or both of you finds it all too much and feels they have nothing left to give. Get the external support you need, whether from friends, family, a good counsellor, a support group, or online communities. You don’t need to do this alone.
  • Focus on the aspects of the other person that you love and make it an essential part of treatment to have fun together. Go and see a mindless film, watch a DVD and have a glass of wine (it is allowed on special occasions) - anything that lifts your spirits and brings a smile to your face.
  • Ask your partner what they need right now and how you can best support them. You may well feel most loved through talking, and they may well feel most loved through being built up as a person and respect. It is all too easy to assume the other person will want what you want. They may surprise you.
  • Know that, although this Valentine’s Day may not be ideal and that you may well not be where you want to be in life, you are moving forwards towards that end goal, and who knows where you will be this time next year.

 

Anya Sizer

About Anya Sizer

Anya Sizer is the Fertility Support Coordinator at The London Women’s Clinic in Harley Street, London where she runs workshops and gives talks on infertility support and stress management. She is a trustee fof the Infertility Network UK, and has published a book, called 'Fertile Thinking', a self-help guide on coping with infertility. Anya is the mother of two IVF children, a journey that took six years and odds of 1 in 125,000 to achieve. 

 


  

About The London Women’s Clinic

The London Women’s Clinic in Harley Street

The London Women’s Clinic provides a range of fertility treatments in centres across the UK to assist couples and individuals experiencing fertility problems. Its team of consultants and nursing staff has over 20 years' experience of diagnosing and treating fertility problems. It offers a full range of diagnostic and treatment programmes for both male and female fertility disorders.