How do you handle "Just don't stress" comments


#1

I’ve had several people tell me lately that if I just don’t stress about getting pregnant, we’ll “just get pregnant.” I tried that for a year, and my cycles got shorter and shorter, which is why I ended up with the infertility workup. I try to explain to people what’s going on, that with the issues they’ve found it will be very difficult to get pregnant without some assistance, but they just keep saying, “Oh, you just shouldn’t stress about it.” I’m not a very stressful person, I think that with all that’s going on I’m still pretty relaxed about it. Either this will work, or it won’t. But what do you say to people, or how do you deal with people who minimize your medical issues down to “stress”?


#2

Of course, most people are trying to be helpful and don’t realize how silly this “advice” really is. I think a good response is something like, “Actually, this has nothing to do with stress. It’s a medical condition that requires treatment.” I usually just blow off this kind of thing because that seems easier, but I’m starting to think we really need to be honest and direct when responding to these kinds of statements.


#3

I got this A LOT from family at first because up until me everyone had been baby making machines. It really upset me at first, but I sort of realized that none of them knew much about what we were going through and at they were just trying to say something kind (even though it is the last thing you want to hear).

I would often say that all the needles and tests were indeed stressful but that we were really into road biking which helped us destress/exercise and what not. And I would usually round up the conversation saying that even though it’s difficult to explain because the process of infertility is so involved we did indeed need to do all the treatments, and were staying really positive about it all. That usually seemed to satisfy the many people who seemed to think we needed stop stressing in order to make a baby!


#4

God how I hate that statement! If I had a penny for every time I heard it, I could have paid for my IVF three times over.

I agree with Essemkay! She’s good!

I have said something to the effect of: “You know what, this is a physical not a psychological problem. It needs physical treatments and solutions.”

And if I know them pretty well I also say: “But if you want to contribute to my success, don’t make me feel like a headcase by telling me that I’m stressing. That makes me feel like I’m to blame for this, and nothing is further from the truth.”

And if I know them really well, I have also said: "And even if I am under stress, it’s one thing to say don’t stress, and it’s another to actually help someone feel better. In fact, instead of telling me that, it would be great if you’d call me up to see a comedy or get a pedicure or go shopping or something that would cheer me up. "

Someone really ought to write a guide for friends and family of women with infertility. Because no matter how good their intentions, inevitably someone puts their foot in it…


#5

Thanks everyone. Those are all very helpful comments, but my favorite is the first one, though I don’t think I’ll be using it. (as much as I want to) :rolleyes:


#6

just pass gas

Say-OK, you’re right. But if I relax too much, I’ll fart!

sorry-couldn’t resist.


#7

These comments drive me crazy! I got that a lot during treatment, and again during the beginning of this pregnancy that had a lot of complications. My mother in law even somewhat recently said “don’t you think the cramping and spotting might be in your head or caused by your worrying.” Seriously.
I often just tell people I am coping in the best way I and appreciate their support, but not their advice because my experience is individual.
dharmadog- congrats! Best of luck everyone, tika


#8

“Don’t Stress” often slips out of the mouth of people who can become pregant from being coughed on!!! I have learned that speaking to people who have no idea what your are going through or how you feel inside is absolutely pointless. They couldn’t get the picture if you drew it in front of them! Stress is all I seem to be going through. The pressure has mounted even more with mne finding out that my emploer has dropped IVF coverage as of 01/11/10 at our initial consultation on Nov 22! I have had my initial consultation, been married, oriented for IVF and been told that my cycle will be cancelled if I do not menstruate by Dec 6th all in 2 weeks time. How’s that for not stressing


#9

Just don’t stress.

I love that old wives tale! The best comment I have heard is from a fellow MD. She said, “Would you go up to a patient with a brain tumor and say, ‘Now if you would just stop stressing and worrying over this tumor it would go away’.” LOL
Here is to all of us dealing with this daily onslaught of absent mindnes! Stay strong.

Me 31 normal
DH 32 Normal
So what is the problem?
:paw::paw: Two spoiled princess huskies.
11/30 IUI with 3 follicles! :pray::cross:


#10

I second that last comment! I work in the ER and I should start using that on my patients. “Your heart attack would go away if you’d stop stressing!” :woohoo:


#11

I have found that people often say this when they either don’t know what to say or don’t know how to comprehend the reason for this problem. Many people in my life who’ve said this have either never had a problem getting pregnant or don’t know how to deal with this intense issue. I think it makes them feel better to have some way to explain these types of difficult life situations away. And I’ve told these people that I’m not infertile because I’m stressed. I’m stressed because I’m infertile! I mean, really! The stress comes after you’ve not been able to get pregnant for a much longer time than most people. Besides, the “stress is the reason” idea just doesn’t make sense when you figure that lots of stressed out women get pregnant all the time. I mean, who isn’t stressed at some point in life, right? It’s also like all the women who smoke and drink and do who knows what before and during pregnancy and still end up with healthy babies. (I’m def. not suggesting this, but am making a point that there is way more to infertility than people are giving credit).


#12

you said my thoughts, jp362. thank you.

Good grief, is there a female version of charlie brown out there? that’s how I feel with these unremarkable comments from women when I really wish they would just say “I’m sorry you’re dealing with this, but I hope you do get pregnant. don’t give up!” oh well, the charlie in me likes to imagine that’s what they are thinking.


#13

My MD said once that if no one who was stressed out could get pregnant, then how due teenagers having hurried sex in the back of a car get pregnant? Isn’t that an extremely stressful situation itself! :woohoo:


#14

I would tell them that punching an object helps to alleviate your stress and ask them if they are volunteering their services. I honestly would never say something like that but it is fun to think such thoughts when someone is saying completely inappropriate sentiments regardless of how well-meaning they are trying to be. I think it is very clever to come up with the anology of telling someone with a heart condition or disease to stop stressing and their illness will go away. Very well said!!!


#15

oh my God these comments drive me crazy. And my 19 week pregnant co-worker standing right outside my door talking about “I’m one of the unlucky ones because I’ve had morning sickness and nausea”.

My mam (I’m British so use mam not mom, and other wacky spellings!) even said to me “just forget all about it and it’ll just happen”. Erm, no, without meds, I don’t ovulate, and no ovulation means no chance of a baby. She only got it when I told her that they’d told me I have 10-15% chance of pregnancy in any one cycle and then a 50% miscarriage chance. That one hit her and she has been more supportive since.

I’m liking a lot of these comments about how to respond back to people. I’m proceeding my telling people about the issue with “its so frustrating when people say don’t stress because it is EXTREMELY stressful and not something you can just relax and forget about when you’re backwards and forwards to the blood lab and clinic and losing all the romance in your sex life having to time it all”. I’ve found that telling people that ‘don’t stress’ is not a good thing to say to me, stops people from saying it.

The best question I ever had was when I had the same girl check me in for my blood tests for the 3rd week running, she just asked straight out “are these for IVF or are you still early in the process”, just very straightforward about it but with concern in her voice. When I said “not up to IVF yet and hopefully won’t need to get that far” she said “yes, good luck, I’m keeping my fingers crossed for you”. Wow, talk about knowing what to say!