Family get-togethers: How to manage in an uncomfortable situation

November 28, 2018

Hi! Dr. Jungheim here! The holidays are coming up.  So much fun, but also a painful reminder for some of us that another year has gone by and we’re still trying.  I watched a movie on Netflix the other day called Private Life and it reminded me of some of the dynamics that go on when we’re struggling to have a child.  The movie follows a couple who has been trying to have a child for a number of years.  They are in their forties and they’ve decided to move on to using donor oocytes.  They’ve asked a younger relative if she would consider being an oocyte donor.  She is excited to help them.  What an amazing thing in my book, but at Thanksgiving dinner when she announces to the family she is doing this (after a few glasses of wine), her mother pulls her aside and is upset.  The daughter counters that if a family member needed a kidney, her mother would volunteer to be a donor.  The mother counters back and refers to the woman struggling with infertility by saying, “it’s not like she’s dying”.  The daughter yells back, “HOW DO YOU KNOW”!?!

WOW!  The movie hit the feeling spot on… sometimes it can feel like you are dying…

Sorry to get so serious, but seriously, recognize your family loves you.  The don’t want to be insensitive.  They may just not understand.

How do we navigate these situations and stay strong?  Cocktails?

Maybe one or two, BUT, advice from some of you who’ve found things that work would be wonderful!

My advice?  Stay close to your partner during the holiday celebrations…whether its physically standing/sitting near them, or having a pep talk before entering one, or regrouping afterwards.

Looking forward to what others have found helpful…
Please share your advice in the comments of this post on our facebook page!