As an adoptive mom who struggled with infertility and will never give birth to a genetic child, it has been so helpful for me to have a safe space to discuss both feelings of infertility and adoption-because they are intertwined. This is a safe place to discuss both the complexities of infertility and adoption for those who find themselves dealing with thoughts, feelings, and experiences from both worlds. Every month we have had great turnouts and very positive and helpful discussions.
Support Group Guidelines
Participants agree to adhere to the following guidelines:
I will keep all information shared in this group confidential, giving everyone the opportunity to share feelings and thoughts without their words being repeated outside the group. For educational purposes, information I learn in the group may be shared with my spouse as long as it does not identify any group member.
I want to be accepted the way I am, so I will accept other group members just as they are, and avoid making judgments of any kind.
I know that we all have our own inner resources to deal with infertility; therefore, I will be respectful of the person sharing and not jump in or interrupt their story to offer solutions or advice unless asked. I may share ideas or resources during my time or general discussion time.
I trust that my thoughts and feelings will be heard with respect and empathy. All feelings are okay. Feelings are neither right nor wrong, good nor bad. I do not need to rescue people from their feelings. Feelings do not need to be interpreted, analyzed, or judged. I understand that crying during support groups is common and an acceptable way to cope with infertility.
I recognize that my needs are important, and in this group I have an opportunity to share my thoughts, feelings, and experiences.
I trust that my silence will be honored if I do not wish to share.
I recognize that we are all in different places in our journey of infertility, that our paths may be different, and that some will achieve their goals of parenthood before others. I understand that even when a person has one or more children, they may still experience the emotional impact of infertility and are welcome in this group. I realize the nature of an infertility group means members will become pregnant or adopt and are welcome to attend as they feel comfortable.
I have my own faith and belief and will honor and respect all others. I realize not everyone in the group may understand the religious or spiritual terms I use and will try to explain in a respectful way if needed.
I will be mindful of limited time and allow each person enough time to speak. I will limit the time I speak according to the size of each group meeting. I want my group to start and end on time; therefore I will do my best to arrive on time. Groups go from 7-9 pm.
I will give supportive attention to the person who is speaking and avoid side conversations or time on my phone. I will step out in the event of an emergency text message or phone call.