The Value of Technology in Therapy for Infertility Treatment
My friend, Dawn Davenport of Creating A Family, recently posted a blog called Infertility Therapy Nightmares. I would like to offer some hope. As Dawn points out, the key to successful fertility therapy is finding a mental health professional who specializes in fertility issues. The good news is there are many available therapists with expertise in this area and many of them have faced fertility issues of their own.
One drawback may be your own proximity to an experienced fertility counselor. The good news is that more mental health professionals are realizing the value of therapy over the phone and Skype. For many years within the mental health professional community, offering anything other than face-to-face therapy was considered unethical.
Many therapists are getting over this archaic view in light of the fact that fertility counseling is a very specific niche of mental health care and those who are in need of their expertise are not always located within driving distance. Those mental health professionals who are willing to assist intended parents via phone or Skype have expanded their practice and helped more patients than they would have if they had held to a more traditional model of patient care.
Modern technology can also help intended parents seek help from the privacy of their own homes. Seeking help from a therapist for fertility issues can be uncomfortable as intended parents may feel that they are being evaluated for their suitability as parents. The goal of therapy for intended parents who are considering going through fertility treatment is to help them to sort through their feelings. There are so many ups and downs in fertility treatment and it can take far longer than intended parents ever anticipated which takes a toll on both individuals in the relationship. The grief and trauma that intended parents go through in their infertility journey has been compared to the stress that cancer patients go through.
And, once you have achieved your goal of becoming pregnant or have your baby, there are still many issues that a mental health professional who specializes in fertility can help you resolve.
I can’t emphasize enough the need for counseling with a mental health fertility specialist as you go through any fertility treatment. It is a time that intended parents often feel alone and isolated and, even if they are open to speaking with friends and family, their loved ones are often ill-equipped to offer the support that they need.
Ask your infertility clinic if they have mental health professionals on staff or can recommend one. I am also happy to make recommendations. You can also search the links provided below.
The American Society of Reproductive Medicine – Mental Health Professional Group