Ten Tips for Surviving the Holidays When You’re Infertile
- Take especially good care of yourself during this time of year. Make sure you are getting enough sleep and exercise. Enjoy all the holiday foods, but make sure you eat healthy when not at the holiday table. Don’t overindulge in alcohol! It will make you morose, too talkative, and possibly hung over–none of which you need during this season.
- Review past holidays to see where the major stressors were and make a plan to be proactive and address them beforehand this year. We give very specific examples in the Infertility Survival Guide to the Holidays.
- Talk with your parents or in-laws about how it feels for you. Acknowledge that it isn’t their fault and they didn’t make you feel this way. Use “I” statements. “I find it hard when the conversation is always about the grandkids.” “I dread seeing Betsy this year since she is 7 months pregnant.”
- Consider limiting the time you spend with your family if it is too stressful.
- Why not change the way you celebrate. Go camping or to Paris for the weekend. Go out to dinner with friends rather than doing the big family celebration. Join your parents for dinner after the holiday.
- Volunteer on the holiday (serving meals at a homeless shelter, playing bingo at a nursing home). If your work needs people over the holiday, sign up.
- Plan something for at least one day in the holiday that you really are looking forward to. Maybe a guilt free shopping trip or visit to a spa.
- Make a date to see your siblings away from their children to allow you time to really visit.
- If you know you might react badly when under stress, decide in advance how you want to behave. Avoid excessive alcohol. Tell your husband of your plans. Tell your parents in advance that it is hard for you, but you have committed to controlling your tongue or behavior.
- Make sure you incorporate that the events that are meaningful or joyful to you into your plans. Do not let infertility rob you of these joys.
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