Why couples need to balance the burden of infertility
1. Communicate your feelings to your spouse
Infertility can bring up a range of emotions such as sadness, frustration, guilt and even anger – and women tend to experience this distress more intensely.
Dr Liu advises couples to express their feelings healthily and actively listen to each other without judgement. Open communication fosters understanding, empathy and mutual support during this challenging journey.
2. Learn how each individual reacts to stress
Infertility treatments and the emotional rollercoaster that comes with them can be stressful, so it’s useful for couples to understand how their other half copes with stress, Dr Liu said.
Some may prefer talking it out, while others may need space and time alone. Learning these differences can help you and your husband support each other better and create an environment that accommodates your spouse’s needs.
3. Spend more quality time with each other
Infertility can consume a couple’s life, but it’s crucial to make time for each other outside of medical appointments and treatments. Dr Liu recommends regular date nights or activities that you both enjoy.
The activities help strengthen your bond with your spouse, promote relaxation, and remind you both of the love and joy you share beyond the fertility journey.
4. Establish the same goals as a family
Discussing and aligning goals regarding family-building allows couples to approach problems better as a team, said Dr Liu. Be open about your desire for biological children, adoption, or other alternative paths. Find common ground and work together towards the same goals.
This shared vision helps couples support each other and make decisions as a united front, minimising potential conflicts or misunderstandings.
5. Find support beyond each other
Infertility is undoubtedly challenging, so seeking support from others who have gone through it can be helpful. Dr Liu recommends that a couple join support groups, attend counselling sessions, or connect with other couples in the same situation.
External support provides a safe space to share experiences, gain insights and find solace in knowing that you and your spouse are not alone in facing infertility issues.