How to Overcome Emotional Bridge in Pregnancy after Infertility

You’ve struggled with infertility for a while and now you’re finally going to have a baby? This great news evokes a plethora of emotions that range from joy and happiness to anxiety. You’re thrilled the baby is on the way, but you don’t want anything bad to happen. Pregnancy tends to be a roller-coaster of emotions for every woman, and they only intensify in ladies who conceived after infertility struggles. In this post, you’re going to learn how to overcome emotional bridge in this special time of your life.

Am I the problem?

When moods and emotions start changing, the first thing that comes to your mind is that you’re the problem and then you feel guilty. In order to overcome the emotional bridge, it’s important to stop blaming yourself for the way you feel, especially in this situation.

A group of scientists from Sweden carried out a study[1] whose goal was to investigate emotional responses in couples who conceived naturally and those who got pregnant via IVF (in vitro fertilization). They discovered that couples who had conceived after IVF may need additional emotional support during pregnancy. The IVF women had more anxiety and distress about losing their baby while men exhibited indirect aggression, anxiety, and were more detached.

Neither you nor your significant other is to blame for the surge of different emotions. First, it’s natural to feel a spectrum of emotions in pregnancy. Second, science has confirmed that people who conceive after infertility struggles do need more emotional support.

To start coping with changing emotions during pregnancy, avoid thinking you’re the problem.

Acknowledge and share your feelings

A common misconception suggests that ignoring your feelings will make them go away. So, when you’re feeling anxious, frustrated, or worried you believe that the only way to get rid of those unpleasant emotions is to ignore them. Wrong! That is a counterproductive habit that only makes things worse.

Instead of ignoring the negative emotions, accept them. Acknowledge both positive and negative emotions and share them with your partner. Fertility is one of the most difficult challenges[2] that people face. Now that you’ve conquered that obstacle it’s natural to experience different feelings. When it comes to coping with those emotions, acknowledging is vital.

Work as a team

Emotional situations can make two people detached from one another primarily because they don’t want to “burden” the other person with their struggles. You’re going through the same situation, pregnancy after fertility struggles, and the struggles are similar too. Instead of distancing yourselves, work as a team.

Working as a team doesn’t mean you have to feel identical emotions at the same time. It means you should give emotional support to your partner and vice versa. If two people are taking care of each other emotionally, they can unite to fight the problem (anxiety and other negative emotions).

Educate yourself

The more you know about pregnancy itself, the calmer you’ll feel. Sometimes you’re afraid of bad things happening and feel anxious because you don’t know what to expect. Get informed about symptoms of pregnancy, baby development through trimesters, and different ways you can feel better physically and mentally.

It’s also useful to get educated about pregnancy after struggles with fertility. Connect with other moms or couples who’ve gone through the same thing and trade experiences. Use only reputable sources to get much-needed information. You’ll feel better and more relaxed when you’re aware of what’s going on in your body and what you can expect later on.

Nowadays, there are many support groups you can join and meet other people who have been in the same situation like you are now. These support groups aren’t limited to social media groups, but physical settings too.

Tell at least one friend

At the very beginning of the pregnancy, you probably want to keep it a secret. That’s understandable primarily because struggling with infertility made you cautious[3] and you still expect the worst to happen. Although you want to keep it a secret for a while, tell at least one friend or close relative. It’s simple, it’s good to share your joy and happiness with someone. Plus, that person can also help you go through the times when negative emotions become overwhelming.

Meditate

Pregnancy after infertility makes it difficult for a woman to view herself as just another pregnant woman. Level of anxiety is high and you feel uncomfortable every time you go to see your doctor or experience some new symptom. If you don’t do anything about it, anxiety keeps growing and makes you feel worse.

Although it can be challenging, it’s entirely possible to overcome anxiety and all the negative feelings it evokes such as fear and frustration. Mediation is a great way to make it happen. This ancient practice focuses on breathing techniques to establish a unity of mind, body, and soul. As you’re deeply focused on every inhale and exhale, you exclude all other thoughts and feelings (including the negative ones).

Meditation isn’t a craze or trend which explains why it is still popular, even after thousands of years. Benefits of meditation are well-documented. A study from the JAMA Internal Medicine[4] found that mindful meditation can help relieve psychological distresses such as anxiety, pain, and depression.

‘People with anxiety have a problem dealing with distracting thoughts that way too much power and don’t allow affected persons to think positively or eliminate them. An anxious person, especially when levels of anxiety are too high, can’t tell the difference between problem-solving thought and a nagging worry without any benefit whatsoever’.

Meditation minimizes the intensity of these thoughts and allows you to think more clearly. As a result, you’re more likely to overcome your emotional distress.

Get reassurance from caregiver

Support during the transition from infertility services to obstetrical care is an important process and it can help the couple feel better emotionally. To enhance this support, it is vital to find a caregiver who understands the anxiety involved in pregnancy after infertility. In other words, find a caregiver or other healthcare professional who has experience with couples who conceived after infertility problems. They know how to handle different situations and are able to help you overcome the emotional bridge.

You should feel free to ask your doctor everything about the pregnancy, especially about different symptoms or emotions you experience. In many situations, doctors can make regular medical appointments more flexible for couples who’ve conceived after infertility. They do so by allowing you to listen to a baby’s heartbeat and, thus, relax knowing everything is okay. In many instances, your caregiver will give their phone number that you can call for questions and reassurance.

Conclusion

Pregnancy marks an important state in a couple’s relationship; it’s the moment you’ve been waiting for, ever since you decided to have a baby. Some couples struggle with fertility and conception becomes difficult to achieve. Pregnancy after infertility brings a plethora of emotions where happiness is overshadowed by anxiety or fear that something might go wrong. It’s possible to feel better and you can achieve it through communication with your partner, joining support groups, and getting educated about your situation.

References
1.https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12648178
2.https://www.babycenter.com/0_therapists-top-tips-for-coping-with-fertility-problems_3935.bc
3.https://resolve.org/support/pregnancy-after-infertility/handling-the-emotions/
4.https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamainternalmedicine/fullarticle/1809754