To the world, they look like a childless couple. You simply don’t know if it’s their choice, or their heartache. Never assume.
In honor of #NationalInfertilityAwarenessWeek, I’m speaking on behalf of those longing for children, but are dealing with infertility, miscarriage, failed reproductive procedures, and/or failed adoptions.
I surveyed others and compiled this list of unhelpful comments/questions commonly received, although usually from good intentions:
?Why are you waiting so long to have children? (Assuming it’s intentional)
?You are SO lucky you have more freedom!
?You don’t know stress/exhaustion because you don’t have children. (I personally hate this one)
?Stop focusing on it so much and it will happen. (It isn’t that simple.)
?You want to foster/adopt? I know X who adopted a child and they got pregnant. (I could dig deep into this one. Choosing to foster/adopt is call to care for orphans or kids in bad situations. It isn’t a ploy to “distract” you so you’ll get pregnant, even if this happens. It isn’t a back-up plan, but a choice to help children who long for loving parents as much as they long for children to love.)
?After miscarriage: At least you know you can get pregnant. At least you weren’t that far along/haven’t been “trying” that long.
?Secondary infertility: You should just be happy to have the child(ren)you have!/When are you going to have more children??
?Children are the GREATEST gift God can give you! (Does this mean I don’t deserve the “best gift”? Does this mean I’m not blessed? Yes children are a gift, but the BEST gift is God’s saving grace and it’s open to everyone at any time.)
How can you help those in your life on this journey? You don’t have to offer “perfect” words or advice. Just listen. Sit with them in their grief. Ask “how are you?” Don’t fear “bringing it up” because you think you will upset them. They are always thinking about it. Your bringing it up just says “I see you” and means so much. Love your own children (if applicable) and be grateful for them.Follow me on social media: