When Access Fertility recently partnered with Fertility Help Hub, we did so because we knew this important platform was offering essential advice to the audience we want to speak to. While we wanted to share our expertise on helping people to lower and fix the cost of their fertility treatment, Fertility Help Hub covers an even broader range of advice, tips and support for those trying to conceive. That’s why we asked to share a recent article about their inclusive and supportive TTC community. We wanted to help spread the word about these great resources for anyone in need of some fertility help.
This article first appeared on Fertility Help Hub on 21 December 2021.
When Founder Eloise started Fertility Help Hub back in 2019, she wanted to create a community bursting with expert advice and an impressive network of fertility clinics to help people struggling with (in)fertility.
Today, our community is stronger than ever and the fertility group chats that happen on Instagram (follow here) and through our free app (download here) are full of wisdom from people who’ve been there.
We know that TTC with fertility complications can be a difficult and lonely world and a community can help with feeling isolated during IVF treatment. But we wanted to find out directly from the incredible people who make up our community what you gain from connecting with Fertility Help Hub.
We asked you: How does being part of a community help you on your fertility journey?
Read on to find out the benefits of an IVF community and the fertility help it can offer.
Written by Holly Pigache
Needing to Belong
In 1954, psychologist Abraham Maslow proposed a “hierarchy of needs” to explain what motivates human behaviour. Usually depicted as a pyramid, the five needs are ordered depending on their importance – the idea is that needs at the base of the pyramid must be satisfied before needs higher up in the pyramid can be met.
It’s no surprise that “Belonging” features in the pyramid (above physiological and safety needs).
Research shows that having a sense of belonging is essential for our physical and mental health. Belonging to a group, whether that’s our family, a hobby club, a nationality… any social group allows us to form relationships with others. These positive relationships help protect us from stress. Perhaps it’s the comfort that we’ll have someone to lean on if things go wrong rather than the existence of our social ties themselves that reduce stress but I’d argue it doesn’t matter. Particularly in the world of (in)fertility, reduced stress is only a good thing.
Chronically feeling isolated has been linked to a range of mental health conditions (such as depression, anxiety and suicide) which can often elicit behaviours that exacerbate loneliness.
Together, We’re Stronger With The Fertility Help Hub
Many Fertility Help Hub Instagram followers said the community provides comfort that we’re not alone. One Instagram follower said: “it helps to know that I’m not alone in this isolating, lonely fertility world”, another noted: “It makes you realise you’re not alone when you feel the most isolated you have ever felt” and another commented, “I always felt lonely as if only I had [fertility difficulties]. The community shows that I am not alone.”
Knowing others are going through similar experiences allows us to feel less alone and there’s comfort in knowing support is out there. Another follower said, “knowing I’m part of a larger community dealing with this comforts me (and also sucks!)” We completely understand this feeling. Whilst there’s comfort in being one of many, it’s sad so many people are struggling with (in)fertility. Our network of fertility warriors provide endless care and support to one another and we’re proud to bring together the people who’ve been there and can offer advice or guidance on a challenging journey.
Expert Fertility Help
Our incredible network of fertility experts can help you at any and every step of your journey. Perhaps you’re seeking information on fertility preservation or maybe you’re in need of supplements for IVF (or anything else fertility-related!), our community has the fertility help / support / information / treatment you need, every step of the way. A new member of our community said: “I’m new to infertility as we have only recently been told so I’m loving all the advice.”
We’re thrilled our fertility community helps.
We’ve Been There, Too.
We can gather all the expert fertility advice, read all the books (click here to read our recommended books about fertility) and Google until we turn cross eyed but sometimes, sharing experiences with someone who’s been there is more comforting. An Instagram follower commented how she loves the shared experiences Fertility Help Hub provides: “[FHH helps with] not feeling so lonely – learning off each other – helping others through our own journeys”.
Another follower echoed these sentiments: “It makes me know I’m not alone and we can all help each other.” Of course, fertility counselling and fertility clinic support can help us navigate the rollercoaster of emotions during fertility treatment, yet speaking with someone in a community can help us realise it’s okay (and not uncommon) to feel angry, disappointed, thrilled, hopeful and depressed all at the same time. For one follower, our community “Makes [her] feel less alone and normalizes all the confusing emotions around infertility.”
The journey of infertility certainly can be a confusing road – both in terms of medical terminology as well as making sense of our experiences. When we walk together, the journey seems a little easier. “[FHH] helps to see that I’m not the only one and that there’s a community available. None of us are alone.”
Another follower said the community makes her “feel less alone. Support, advice, tips from experienced IVFers. They get me.” Feeling seen, heard and understood adds to our sense of belonging in an otherwise isolating journey. In fact, a different follower responded: “I think that’s the most important part: that we can share and feel understood.”
When we’re feeling isolated, it can be tough to put on a smile and feel positive. Some days, it feels like the (in)fertility journey will never end and setbacks are forever hindering your family-building goals. That’s why our Fertility Help Hub community is so valuable, it offers hope and support when there are little reserves to draw on. One community member said the FHH community helps them “feel like there is hope, and it is possible”.