Understanding the benefits of professional help
Discovering you’re unable to conceive a child without medical intervention can be extremely distressing. Fraught with uncertainty, anxiety is common, but also guilt, shame, jealousy and resentment.
Research shows that most people handle the stresses of fertility treatment without counselling. However, it could help them cope better through the process and life without children, if that’s the outcome.
The end of treatment (voluntary or otherwise) can be traumatic and yet a relief. Even pregnancy can be worrying as some families are created by donor conception, which has emotional issues such as genetic connection, and telling the child.
For couples, counselling is a chance to talk openly together. For single people, it may be the only outlet to express fears of the challenge ahead. Counselling can help you consider your choices throughout the treatment and make more thoughtful decisions.
Although fertility counselling isn’t relationship counselling, some couples want to talk about issues that arise or how their relationship has changed. Counselling offers the chance to explore the meaning of family, and look for purpose in a child-free life. It invites you to be hopeful and supports you in times of anxiety and distress.
All fertility clinics in the UK will have a qualified counsellor who’s a member of the British Infertility Counselling Association (BICA).