For many people Mother’s Day is a lovely time of celebration but for anyone having difficulty becoming a mum it can be a tough time, so Bristol fertility counsellor Wendy Martin has put together some top tips to help would-be mums get through the day if they are not looking forward to it.
Wendy, who works as a counsellor and treatment support therapist at Bristol Centre for Reproductive Medicine (BCRM) says that as Mother’s Day approaches those who are struggling to conceive should accept it is completely understandable if they are feeling bad, given their situation, and this response is perfectly normal.
“What can be particularly difficult is that others may not realise just how painful this day is for you,” said Wendy.
“Some of the people around you – particularly family and friends with children – may find it hard to grasp just how challenging Mother’s Day can be for those who are having difficulty becoming parents.
“Rather than fight against this and build up resentment towards people who lack the empathy you would like, it can sometimes help simply to accept that those closest to you don’t mean to be insensitive or un-empathic, it’s just they genuinely don’t get how hard it is for you.”
And if the prospect of Mother’s Day is filling you with dread, she emphasises the importance of planning for how best to manage the day.
“Talk your fears and concerns through, ahead of time, with your partner or a close friend because you need to take care of yourself and work out the best way to cope,” said Wendy.
“Be realistic about what you can and can’t do. Try to make the day as safe for you as you possibly can.”
Make your mum’s Mother’s Day really special. If you can’t handle going out for a meal and being faced with family celebrations, then invite your mum to your home for a special breakfast or afternoon tea and treat her like a queen
Or if your mum is no longer around perhaps you can buy some flowers or bake a cake in her memory, share some photos of her with a friend or loved one and reminisce a bit.
If you decide to go out for the day devise a getaway plan in advance, enlisting help if necessary, with a reliable exit strategy that will enable you to depart if it all becomes too much.
Find ways of avoiding certain topics of conversation and divert people from particularly difficult lines of enquiry. Remember, you don’t have to answer. You could say: “Oh I’m not thinking about me right now – it’s mum’s special day” and then divert the attention from yourself by saying something lovely about your mum.
If you can, simply avoid Mothering Sunday completely, with a pleasurable and self-supporting activity such as a long country walk where the chances of seeing families are reduced. Or maybe a spa day or some retail therapy might help – treat yourself!
Understanding the importance of supportive counselling for women and couples who are struggling to conceive, BCRM offers a free ‘Patient Support’ appointment to every patient prior to starting any treatment. Once treatment is underway NHS patients can have one complementary counselling session for every cycle of treatment, and private patients have three for every treatment cycle. Further appointments are available by arrangement.
Details are available by emailing contact@BCRM.clinic , call 0117 259 1159 or see www.fertilitybristol.com
Mother’s Day. A day we will eventually celebrate and be celebrated
To the Mothers in Waiting by Hollie Shirley
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