How to Deal With the Pain of Infertility

Updated: Jun 27

A couple sits on the couch holding a negative pregnancy test with sad faces and needs to heal from the pain

Always remember you’re not alone

Infertility can be devastating for individuals and couples. It often leads to a host of emotions including anger, shame, and resentment. Not only does it hurt the person trying to carry a baby, but if you’re part of a couple, it can greatly impact the relationship.

Always remember that you’re not alone when dealing with infertility. There are doctors, therapists, and other people going through the same thing that you can turn to. We will explain how infertility can affect a relationship and four ways to cope with the pain of going through it.

How infertility can affect a relationship

Infertility can affect both men and women. At times, the root cause of a couples’ conception challenges remains unclear. Whether one party is experiencing it or it’s a result of undetermined causes, it can affect the individual as well as the relationship as a whole.

When a couple is experiencing infertility, one or both parties may feel ashamed, guilty, or angry. Women especially may experience feelings of unworthiness. They may wonder why this is happening to them and even question whether they are fit to be a parent. It can be a traumatizing situation.

It’s not just women who suffer from the psychological effects of infertility. Research shows that men are at risk for anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, and sexual dysfunction. For women, the emotional stress of coping with infertility is similar to the stress of coping with a serious illness such as cancer or HIV.

Ways to cope with infertility

1. Be honest about your feelings

It’s important to acknowledge your true feelings both with yourself and your partner. Anger, guilt, resentment, fear, and anxiety are all normal emotions to have when facing major life challenges such as infertility. If you and your partner have undergone invasive fertility testing and treatment, there may be feelings of resentment towards the situation or even the other person. You might feel angry that you’re having to go through this or worried about the future. Other common emotions include the fear of being judged by others, feelings of failure, inadequacy, and jealousy.

2. Take care of yourself and your relationship