We each have a story about our infertility struggle. For most of us it involves a lot of numbers – number of cycles, number of shots, numbers of attempts, numbers of doctors, numbers of years. It is something we know well and something we can recite pretty easily if someone asks how long we’ve been trying. But the story you are telling yourself is shaping every moment of this experience for you and, if you are anything like I was, it was tearing you apart mentally. Here are 11 ways to completely revamp your infertility story as you go forward building your family.
- You control the intensity of negativity in your story. Infertility seems more intense when you learn of other people’s pregnancies and fertility. When you tell the story of how long you’ve been trying to conceive, omit the part where you get upset about that friend of your neighbor who got pregnant on her first try.
- Your story is neutral, not negative. Write down everything that contributes to your infertility story. Then pull out the facts. Just the cold, hard, undeniable, neutral facts from that story (i.e. take out all of the adjectives). Read it again and see how it sounds.
- Only compare yourself with yourself. The only true competition you have is the version of yourself you were yesterday. Only think about being better than that version, not better than another person.
- Process the pain of it. Sometimes we tell stories with the intention of dredging up emotional pain within ourselves. If telling your story compounds the pain, take time to actually process what you are feeling, rather than resist, react or avoid it.
- Reconsider what you believe about yourself. If beliefs you have about yourself suffer because of your infertility story take a step back and acknowledge all of the areas which are different for you. Your infertility story should not be the basis of what you are and are not capable in life.
- Stop living in the past and embrace the future. Every time we tell our infertility story we recreate the past and stay stuck in it. If you aren’t satisfied with where the past has taken you, focus on the future and creating your story from a place of possibility instead of a place of lack.
- Let go of what you thought you were entitled to. If you use words like should, fair, and deserve then you probably think you were entitled to a different family building experience than what you are going through now. Learn to let go of that perspective and accept where you are now.
- Infertility isn’t a problem until you make it one. Think about how many people don’t want children or choose to become sterile? Infertility is a problem for you because you have deemed it so, not because it inherently is.
- Your story is an opportunity to be curious and compassionate with yourself. When you look into what is going on in your mind and see all of the mental clutter you are allowing because of infertility, take a stance of curiosity and compassion instead of beating yourself up mentally over all that is going on.
- Make sure your story includes what you really want in it. Many times when we tell our infertility stories we only tell of the things we don’t have in the process. Next time you tell it be sure to include what it is that you really do want from the experience. Bringing your attention back to the source of why you are pursuing all of it will change how it comes out.
- Your story is your decision. Just as with everything in life, you choose how you get to tell your infertility story, everything from the words you use to the way in which it impacts your emotional well-being.
By revamping your story you will completely revamp your infertility experience. Want help changing your story? Schedule a free strategy session with me to get started.