Infertility can feel scary and isolating, but there is a lot of help out there if you look for it. I’m sharing the Infertility Resources that helped me through our journey.
One in eight couples are affected by infertility. That means, if not you, someone you know is dealing with infertility whether you know it or not. Unfortunately, it is way more common than most people think. It is a taboo topic that can make people feel uncomfortable, because of this, it can be tough to find support and can cause you to feel isolated. But, if you are struggling with infertility, you really don’t have to do this alone. We are lucky to be living in a time where, if you look for it, you can find support. In this post I am sharing the resources that helped me most.
I am a big fan of podcasts to begin with, so they were one of the best resources for me. These infertility podcasts were my main source of comfort. There is something special about being able to actually listen to the voices of other people that are going through, or have gone through what you are facing.
Beat Infertility – Hosted by Heather Huhman, she interviews other women about their infertility stories. She has had a long, difficult battle with infertility so she is very empathetic. Heather always asks the same questions, which I like because it gives the episodes structure. There isn’t a lot of banter back and forth, so it is drier than some of the other podcasts on this list. However, it is very informative. Heather is also an infertility coach, so she is really well informed. She also has doctors and experts on the show for bonus episodes and they cover pretty much every infertility topic you could think of. The podcast is still ongoing, releasing 2 episodes a week. It started in 2015, so there are hundreds of episodes, you definitely don’t have to start at the beginning and you can search through the episodes by topics you are interested in.
Infertile AF – This is the newest of the podcasts I have listed here, it’s a little over a year old and a new episode drops every Wednesday. The host, Ali Prato, battled secondary infertility a few years back and now is sharing the stories of other women. It is much fluffier than Beat Infertility, in that it is more of a conversation between Ali and her guests. I haven’t learned as much factual information from this podcast, but I do find it helpful from an emotional standpoint.
Matt & Doree’s Eggcellent Adventure – Matt and Doree are a couple who live in LA. They had a long IVF journey, I won’t spoil the ending for you in case you want to listen to it from the beginning. They podcasted their IVF journey in real time, so it is very raw and real. I love that they do it together as a couple, because it is really nice to hear a male perspective for once. Matt is a TV writer for The Goldbergs, so he is very funny and entertaining to listen to and Doree has the world’s best podcast voice. Though they are not actively going through IVF anymore, they still release a weekly episode, catch you up on their lives and take voicemails from listeners who have questions and concerns about IVF and infertility. I know from listening to the voicemails, that not all of their listeners are part of the infertility community, a lot of people who want to learn more about infertility and IVF to help a friend or family member going through it tune in too.
Big Fat Negative – I just can’t even tell you how much I love this podcast. The hosts Emma and Gabby are British and listening to their accents and banter makes my day! They both went through IVF and they podcasted their journeys together in real time. They took a break after having their IVF babies and are now back with a new season of the podcast where they are following another couple’s journey. I find it fascinating to hear the differences because IVF in the UK vs. the US. The first season about their journeys is easy to binge. There are obviously a lot of serious parts, but it is also lighthearted and very enjoyable to listen to.
The Infertile Mafia – This podcast is sort of the sister version of Big Fat Negative, but with 2 women from the US. I don’t like it as much since they didn’t record it in real time. The hosts, Sarah and Kaela, met on YouTube because they were YouTubing their infertility journeys when they were going through it. They became friends and started the podcast after the fact. The podcast is just a different vibe from the others, it’s pretty lighthearted and I didn’t take as much from it. That being said, it’s worth giving it a try because it may be the right fit for you!
I am in quite a few infertility facebook groups. I don’t participate much, but I do read the comments daily and most of the groups are very active and informative. Most of the podcasts listed above have a corresponding Facebook group for listeners, so if you like one of the podcasts that could be a good place to start with finding a group. The best Facebook group I am a part of is one that is associated with my fertility clinic. It’s great to have a group where the women are dealing with the same clinic because things can vary so much clinic to clinic.
I do have to put a disclaimer on the Facebook groups… they can be overwhelming. You may learn about lots of things you never even considered, which can be eyeopening, but it can also cause potentially unnecessary anxiety. I recommend joining a few groups and giving it a week or 2 to figure out which ones work best for you and which ones don’t. You can choose to leave Facebook groups at any time, so it’s nice to feel it out and figure out the ones that are your speed.
There is a big infertility community on Instagram. A lot of women choose to create a separate Instagram account to document their infertility journey and connect with other women. Maybe you are interested in doing that, or maybe you would just like to follow along with other women that are. Check out these hashtags to find accounts you connect with: #infertilitycommunity #infertilitysucks #infertilityawareness #infertilitysupport #ivfcommunity #ivfsisters #ivfsupport #1in8.
I haven’t found too many good movies or documentaries about infertility, but there are 2 I recommend:
One More Shot – It documents a couple’s unfiltered IVF journey. It’s very real and their journey is tough. I like that about the documentary because it doesn’t sugar coat anything. However, it may be triggering or anxiety provoking for some. This would be another good option for someone looking to learn more about IVF to help support a friend or family member. (It used to be on Netflix, but now I think you have to steam it through Vimeo)
Vegas Baby – A documentary about a clinic in Las Vegas that hosted a contest for a free round of IVF. It follows some of the individuals/couples that apply the the contest and the results of their IVF journeys. It sheds light on the staggering costs of IVF and the inability for many to afford it. (It is available on Netflix and Amazon Prime)
There are a lot of people who have documented their infertility journeys on YouTube. Some are current, but a lot are older. I think YouTube used to be like Instagram is now for the infertility community, so it was more common before than it is now. I have dabbled in a bunch of people’s channels, the one that I really connected with was Chelsea Hansen. I find her easy to listen to and helpful to watch. Just do a search for “infertility” or “ivf journey” on YouTube and maybe you will find someone you connect with.
Find a Friend
All of the resources I have listed here are virtual. That’s because that is the world we are living in. But it is also important to have someone or multiple people in your real life that you can turn to. Whether it be a friend who has gone through it or one that hasn’t, but is very empathetic. When I shared about our miscarriages, I learned about a lot of people in my own life that had dealt with loss and infertility. It was nice to discover people in my real life that understood what I was going through.
There are also in-person support groups that you can join. Resolve runs infertility support groups around the country and you may also find that your clinic has an in-person support group that could be helpful.
Infertility Abbreviation Cheat Sheet
I’m sorry, are you speaking English!? The infertility community has a language all it’s own filled with abbreviations. You will sometimes encounter this with the podcasts and you will see it all over the Facebook groups. I found the cheat sheet below on Pinterest to help you if you need it. Don’t worry, you pick up on it fast!
Everyone is going to deal with infertility and the emotions that come with it differently. Some of these resources may be helpful to you, while others may not be. The journey is often long and always emotionally taxing, so it is important that you find some Infertility Resources that can help you through it!
If you have any questions about infertility or need someone to talk to I am always here! Comment below or feel free to reach out to me privately at firstname.lastname@example.org.