Infertile or Not ~ Enough Already With Dismissing Feelings - Including Disappointment, Frustration and Yes, Even Rage
Infertile or Not - Some Things Are Starting to Annoy Me
I’ve read a lot of quotes lately, whether e-cards or beautiful pieces of poems coupled with gorgeous photographs or images.
They’re starting to annoy me. So are Pinterest and Twitter, and yes, even Facebook. There are these little snippets of advice that sound remarkably similar after a while.
Look at things differently. See the good. Appreciate what you have.
Oh, come on.
I’m sticking up for those of us who have feelings of disappointment, frustration, irritability about significant and insignificant events in our lives.
Why can’t we take a moment of emotional honesty and say “THIS SUCKS” at the top of our lungs? Punch a pillow. Curse like a truck driver. Cry our eyes out.
Why can’t we take a moment and acknowledge the very HUMAN emotions that we feel when we spend time, energy, effort and more and we don’t get what we want? Why can’t we throw a little or big pity party? Or a tiny or enormous temper tantrum?
It sounds so much to me like a version of “pull yourself up by your boot straps”. It sounds so much to me like don’t feel your feelings. It sounds so much to me like feel differently, NOW, immediately.
Oh bah humbug.
I have a great life, with wonderful things, people and more in it. But I am tired right now. And I was tired yesterday after fifteen minutes of moving around my house. And I sat down and had a good cry about being unable to do what so definitely needed to be done in my home.
I felt better. I felt better after I cried. I felt better feeling awful for a little while; for feeling sorry for myself.
Ever hear this one? “Eat all your dinner because there are children starving all over the world.” So what, does that mean I should overeat? Would that make those children less hungry or just me overfull?
I know there are people who have it worse than I do in this world. There are people who have it worse than you in this world too. Does that mean you have no pain or that you’re not allowed to express it or feel it for a moment before rushing on to feeling better, different, more?
Emotional Support and Empathy
My very physically ill and compromised older sister called me yesterday, from the hospital. I can’t even count how many times she’s been in the hospital in the last two years. Probably a conservative number of times would be twenty. She had another emergency admittance last week and was calling me from the hospital to see how I was feeling.
She pushed aside questions about how she was feeling and pressed me to tell her about myself. Not coincidentally, our conversation precipitated my bout of crying. Her tenderness, concern and empathy, despite her much more overwhelming painful situation were like a soothing balm. My pain and discomfort were valid and it was ok to feel how I felt and to express those feelings. She was not comparing our pain and she was interested.
It’s ok to hurt. It’s ok to cry. It’s ok to feel bad, frustrated, disappointed and yes, even angry.
And it’s ok not to rush on to make any of those feelings any different. We know they will pass. It’s ok to feel bad until they do.
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About Lisa Rosenthal
Lisa has over thirty years of experience in the fertility field. After her personal infertility journey, she felt dissatisfied with the lack of comprehensive services available to support her. She was determined to help others undergoing fertility treatment. Lisa has been with RMACT for eleven years and serves as Patient Advocate and the Strategic Content Lead.
Lisa is the teacher and founder of Fertile Yoga, a program designed to support men and women on their quest for their families through gentle movement and meditation.
Lisa’s true passion is supporting patients getting into treatment, being able to stay in treatment and staying whole and complete throughout the process. Lisa is also a Certified Grief Recovery Specialist, which is helpful in her work with fertility patients.
Her experience also includes working with RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association and The American Fertility Association (now Path2Parenthood), where she was Educational Coordinator, Conference Director and Assistant Executive Director.