Supporting Your Partner During Fertility Treatment
It can be incredibly overwhelming and difficult to watch someone near and dear to you go through fertility treatment. This often makes it hard to know what to say and what to do in order to support and care for your partner during this time. Here are some tools you can use to help give your partner a shoulder to lean on during stressful times.
Give a Listening Ear
Instead of trying to tell your partner that there are things they should be grateful for or that things could be worse, let your partner air their grievances. If your partner comes to you wanting to talk about how bad their hormones feel or how they’re frustrated, simply listen. This may seem obvious, but sometimes they don’t want to hear the advice you have to give about the situation, but simply want a person who will listen to them.
We all don’t necessarily like doing the dishes, so cleaning out the full sink will help your partner feel cared for during their treatment. Extra help doesn’t always have to include cleaning, and can include picking up dinner so they don’t have to worry about it or taking the dog out for a walk in the early hours of the morning.
The extra help will help your partner solely focus on keeping their body in tip-top shape during fertility treatment, and help lessen the stressors of day-to-day chores.
Treat your Partner
This tip is especially relevant if your partner’s love language is gift-giving. Whether it be something small like the box of chocolates they’re craving or a couples’ massage, treating your partner to something nice will let them know that you’re on their side through this entire journey.
Be with Them, Mentally and Physically
Sometimes, family and friends can be a little too nosy when it comes to knowing what’s going on with your partner’s treatments. If you know that nosiness is bothering your partner, set some boundaries with people who are pushing limits. Having hard discussions is an extra stressor your partner doesn’t need to be handling right now, and they will appreciate you protecting their energy.
However, Don’t Isolate
You’re going to be helping your partner a lot through this journey, and it’s important to lean on family and friends for emotional support. This is to help ensure that you and your partner don’t build resentment toward the fertility process.
This one might seem like a no-brainer, but fertility treatments take physical and mental tolls on the body. Your partner is going through major hormonal changes, resulting in all kinds of physical effects. Sometimes they may be snappy, tired, angry, or sick, and it’s incredibly important to practice patience through all stages of your partner’s treatment.
Ask What They Want
While you may have a good idea of what they need, if your partner is feeling extra frustrated it’s good to ask them what they need at that moment. Sometimes, it might be as simple as space, and other times, it might be a shoulder to cry from. It might be hard for your partner to communicate how they’re feeling without you asking.
Let them Know You Care
So now we’ve given them gifts, scheduled them massages, and let them rant, but sometimes all they need to hear is a simple I love you and I care for you. It’s easy to get caught up in the hullabaloo of life while undergoing fertility treatments, and letting them know your feelings helps slow things down and helps them recenter.
What’s most important during fertility treatments is finding out what works best for you and your partner. This involves open, respectful, and loving communication at all points during the treatment. In the end, this stressful period can result in one of life’s greatest joys, and it’s important that your relationship stays strong and stable.