Before undergoing treatment with the use of egg donation it is recommended to have a consultation with a counsellor specialized in dealing with infertility sadness, anxiety or depression. Egg donation is a highly successful treatment, but it often involves taking hormones, depression over infertility and a roller-coaster of emotions. The whole IVF experience can be a draining and exhausting process. What is more, you need to remember that there is a whole bunch of different issues you and your partner will have to deal with. Very often these issues are not very obvious but it is much better to be well prepared than be caught off guard.
Counselling for infertile couples will prepare you for the most difficult moments during your fertility treatment journey and give you the much needed strength and support when you feel anxious or low.
With the first session the psychologist or infertility therapist will evaluate your readiness to begin IVF treatment. They will take you through the whole process step by step taking into account the psychological impact of infertility, undergoing hormone treatment and your psychological well-being after a potential failure. EggDonationFriends recommend you should search for infertility counselling after you decide on treatment type and of course before you start with it.
Anxiety and infertility – what are the concerns in general?
- Lack of genetic connections with the offspring
- Selecting the egg donor
- Legal responsibilities of all parties
- Telling the child about their origins, or announcing your treatment to friends and family
- Your feelings about unsuccessful pregnancies or infertility treatments in the past if there were such
- Personal, spiritual and financial issues
Infertility therapist – overcoming the issues
Some infertile couples are able to get past most issues without counselling. You can face some of these concerns with the help and support of your partner or friends or even by yourself. There are, however, issues that need to be taken on with the help of a professional.
First of all, an open and honest conversation is crucial. Talk with your partner or infertility therapist about things that are difficult to you or things/events which have a negative impact on your life. Also, talking with people who also went through infertility problems could turn out to be very helpful. In some marriages it may be hard to have an open conversation on such a difficult topic as IVF or donor eggs/sperm. There are various reasons why that happens but sometimes the partners are not ready to talk openly and honestly. This is where infertility counselling comes in. A specialized psychologist will know how to make such discussion flow.
Counselling for an infertile couple – psychological evaluation
Such psychological evaluation involves both medical and psychological reviews of the infertile couple. It mainly revolves around discussing their feelings about donor eggs, embryo donation, choosing between the anonymous, non-anonymous (known) donor or open egg donor. Insight into your concerns and worries will help the counsellor understand your case batter. If you decide for a known egg donor, you could also arrange a meeting with her where you would talk about your plans of her involvement.
People often ask if they will be evaluated on being good parents. We wouldn’t necessarily say it is a wrong question – it is definitely a question asked by many patients. There is no evaluation like this. Everyone can be a good parent if they are given enough positive affirmation and support from friends and family.
If you are about to start a treatment using donor gametes (sperm, oocyte or embryo) we recommend watching “Donor conception dilemmas: decision-making, family building, and managing differences” video series.” It’s a webinar held by an expert in this filed – Nina Barnsley from Donor Conception Network.
We have prepared special section regarding an IVF emotional and psychological support including ivf with own eggs, donor eggs treatments.
How can an infertility therapist help?
Most infertility psychological issues can definitely be solved with the help of professional therapist of infertility coach. If you happen to go through depression and IVF treatment at the same time, it is a priority that you look after your mental health first and then proceed to infertility treatment. Infertility depression support is available through both private and public health providers. Also, organizations like the London based Infertile Life, run by Andreia Trigo or Donor Conception Network in the UK provide coaching, courses, books and events for fertility patients. They offer support every step of the way and help you create perspective and focus on your goals.
The most important thing is to gather the courage and talk openly about your emotional problems and try to conquer them together with your counsellor. Managing the stress of infertility and the roller-coaster of emotions may not be easy but it is doable. Do not leave hurting issues to yourself. If there is a problem even somewhere deep within, rest assured: the psychologist has heard them all and already knows the best options to get through them.