This blog addresses various emotional aspects of experiencing infertility. It is written by a clinical psychologist who specializes in infertility counseling. Thank you for reading, and best of luck with your journey!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Top tips for surviving infertility treatment: Day One

I hope everyone is starting off 2013 well.  I apologize for not having more new posts up lately.  I seem to have gotten swollowed up with the business that comes with the holidays, the end of the year, and the many viruses floating around the Chicagoland area.  To jump start myself back into writing more regularly, I thought  I would try posting each day for the next ten days, albeit shorter posts.  Each day during this period, I will be discussing strategies for getting through infertility treatment with some vestiges of your sanity intact.

Today's tip:  Manage your "infertility relationships".
Relationships are one of the most important aspects to surviving infertility treatment, especially when it comes to your treatment providers.  When someone feels their doctor, nurse or clinic is on their do side, they can weather a lot of turbulence in their treatment cycle.  On the other hand, I've seen treatment cycles nearly being driven off the rails by a rude receptionist or a mistake made in the medical billing office.

Now, I know that you are probably paying that doctor or clinic a lot of money, so you might think that they should be be the one to manage the relationship too, right?  I don't disagree with that, but the reality of the situation is that many doctors and clinics are very busy and are not always aware of the emotional subtleties involved.  In order for you to get the most out of your treatment, you may need to take this role on for yourself.

Thus, I think it important to think about each staff member involved in your case.  What role do they play?  What do you need from then in order to feel comfortable and supported?  Then, ask yourself if you think it will be easy to get what you need from this staff member.  If so, great.  If not, however, then you need to make a little assessment of the personality of the person in question, and try to figure out what would be the most effective strategy for getting what you need.  Sometimes, you just need to take the emotion out of the situation for a second and just look at things from an operational perspective. 

Once you have your strategy, you will reduce the element of surprise (at least unpleasant surprise) and you will be more able to immediately employ your strategy and improve the situation.

Let me know what you think, and look back tomorrow for more tips!

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for this post. My husband and I are in the midst of infertility testing. Today we spent 35 precious minutes walking around our hospital looking for the lab (all while I had his "sample" in my bra). Once we finally made our deposit and located the registration we were met with the least helpful, most intrusive receptionist possible- literally shouting "are you here for INFERTILITY TESTING OR A VASECTOMY". All the while I was on the verge of stress tears.
    I am convinced that all I needed was to feel like the 'machine' was working with me instead of against. It's good to be reminded that I have a say. I can insist on being treated with respect and a general courtesy. Thanks for a little empowerment.