10 Popular Sayings That Hurt People With Infertility – INFOGRAPHIC



When was the last time someone gave you instructions on how to reproduce?

If you answered “never” I’ll bet you’re not dealing with infertility.

If you answered “last Tuesday”, I’ll bet you’ve got a fertility doctor on speed dial…and are familiar with the dual frustration of coping with infertility and the rude comments of others.

By itself, infertility is an emotionally painful disease. But throw in the “well-intentioned” comments of friends and in-laws offering “advice” and that pain and hurt swells up like a water balloon straining to burst.

I made this infographic because I want people to know that the things they say to couples struggling with infertility ad undergoing fertility treatments like IVF — even “helpful tips” — can cause hurt feelings.

Supporting people with infertility is easy: all you have to do is listen and try to empathize.

Words That Hurt People with Infertility - Infographic

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12 Responses to 10 Popular Sayings That Hurt People With Infertility – INFOGRAPHIC

  1. Crystal April 11, 2011 at 6:53 pm #

    Or how about this one… Well, you’ve never had a baby, so you wouldn’t know what it’s like. Someone said that to me just a couple of weeks ago..

  2. Kelly April 11, 2011 at 11:28 pm #

    I heard three of these in one sentence today.

  3. Kathy April 12, 2011 at 9:27 pm #

    Or… (while having her baby with her on Skype) “Are you sure you want one of these? He takes up so much of my time!” Aggghhh! No, maybe I haven’t thought it through whilst I’ve been waiting and waiting for what seems like forever, having numerous intrusive examinations, giving enough blood for tests to make a vampire feel stuffed, taking a huge amount of hormone-inducing tablets and injecting myself daily with various hormones to give myself a minimal chance of becoming pregnant!

  4. Judy Larson April 13, 2011 at 4:41 am #

    How about the people who have no interest one way or another who are constantly being bombarded with recommendations on what to say and what not to say? The fact is that you have chosen to subject yourself to invasive medical procedures and your martyr pose is very, very tedious.

  5. Mike April 14, 2011 at 3:18 pm #

    Judy, I’m not sure how someone posting something on their own blog which YOU CHOSE TO VISIT AND READ is “bombarding” you with recommendations. For someone who claims to have “no interest” in someone’s infertility, you sure seem to read the blogs and certainly do have an opinion.

    Maybe you should save your comments for the actual people in your life who you feel are doing rather than complain about what someone says on a blog that you chose to read. My guess is you don’t dare have the guts to do that so you resort to posting on a blog.

    • Jenn July 2, 2011 at 5:34 pm #

      Jude, I don’t think anyone is “choosing” to “subject (ourselves) to invasive medical procedures. . . they are choosing to have a baby and utilizing all of their options. If you think that’s tedious for you….well imagine what it is for them women dealing with it. Start a blog that suits you….bet you wont see any of us on it 🙂

  6. Patricia April 15, 2011 at 7:00 am #

    Well said, Mike. Judy, you are either blessed with children or have never had the desire to have them because you obviously misunderstood why the above phrases may be hurtful to those of us who are having a hard time getting pregnant. I haven’t chosen anything about being infertile and its nice to know I’m not alone in the world.

    The fact is you clicked on and read the link which makes you somewhat interested. And I am all for you having an opinion on the subject as that is part of your right as an American, but for goodness sake, have some tact. Perhaps calling those of us who are unable to have children and post on our blogs about it ‘martyrs’ wasn’t the most appropriate thing to do…Especially when most of the people who are reading your post on this page are your so-called martyrs.

    Whats next? Are you going to go bug the women with breast cancer who wear the pink ribbons martyrs and tedious?

  7. MissVal April 16, 2011 at 9:57 pm #

    I am almost 35. I have 3 other friends that have had infertility problems and have stood by each others sides through many miscarriages, negative pegnancy tests, and fertility procedures. All 3 have had a baby in the last year. I am very happy for them all. But, now that they are mothers I hear the same things out of their mouths that we used to say “how could someone say something like that”. I myself have been through fertility treatments.. and spent a lot of time driving from SWMO to KC every week to KU medical and a LOT of money… just to have nothing to show for it. It is so easy for people to say those things… and not think anything about them because they have children. But, when you have tried to have a baby for almost 15 years and nothing.. everything but a baby hurts. It makes you feel like less of a woman.. or at least for me it does. It makes a person feel very sad.. and there is nothing that can ever take the place of a mother’s love for her child…………….

    • Meg March 31, 2012 at 7:50 pm #

      Oh, I so understand!! I’ve stood by people while they’ve gone through infertility and baby hopes, too.. and then watched them get pregnant and been glad for them.. but while it’s still stinging for me, some of them seem almost SHOCKED that I don’t want to listen to them chitter chatter for hours non-stop about their pregnancy directly or indirectly… like “In (month) or by summer, I’ll be (#) months along and I can’t (blah,blah,blah).. ”

      I do have other children and this horrible infertility has been affecting us for over a year & half.. and it’s so hard… people can be so insensitive and it shocks me how quickly they forget!!

  8. LynnS April 21, 2011 at 3:52 am #

    I’m so sorry to hear about your fertility problems :[ I really wish all of you much luck. I’m starting to worry that I, myself am in the same boat. GOOD LUCK *BABY DUST*

  9. Jessica Cobb (@DomesticPirate) March 2, 2013 at 12:21 am #

    We had trouble conceiving our second and the WORST was when both our moms would say, “Well, I never had problems, I don’t see why YOU would.” Ugh. Or when my Dr. asked me why I couldn’t ‘just be happy with the baby we already have’, like our dream of having a big family was any less important than someone who only wanted 1 child.

    I do have to semi-disagree on the ‘relax’ phrase though. Stressing out about it only made it worse for us, so my husband had to remind me to relax a LOT.

  10. Aaron April 11, 2013 at 6:37 pm #

    Thanks for putting this together. Even the best meaning friends and family can say the worst things on accident. It is really not their fault, they just may not realize what you are going through. Spreading these sayings around and talking about infertility is important for to educate people about infertility.