Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Seven Ways a Husband Can Support a Wife During Infertility #6

For part one click here. For part two click here. For part three click here. For part four click here. For part five click here. 

6.) Be a man willing to seek out and to create community – I want to exhort you to find community. This may be a simplistic, but it can be very counter intuitive to men. We are told to be individualistic or as a couple to be “private,” especially in regard to such a private suffering as infertility. While some privacy is certainly called for, there is a false individualism lurking here that translates into the thoughts of men "to do everything on our own," which is a very dangerous attitude. In particular, men are taught at an early age to isolate themselves in the work they have to do, rather than be relational. But if you want healing and growth, then you need to realize that we men, like women, are relational beings who need a good parish, a good set of friends, and support from family (if possible). Broaden out of your comfort zone to be more with people who can rejuvenate you as a couple.

Also find or create a support group of friends who struggle with the same struggle of infertility through blogging and reaching out to others within your community. You will be surprised at how many of us there are! By doing so you will also start to bring out healing to your suffering in ways you can never imagine. In particular, you should avoid lamenting that "there is nothing in your area" and instead reach out to others in your community by creating opportunities for infertile couples. Talk to your pastors about how you could do this. Or informally create events for tough days, like this Mother's Day, we decided to have a champagne brunch with another infertile couple. Or go to the family life director at the Archdiocese to see if you can start anything. We were blessed with being able to start an annual Archdiocesan Mass to facilitate this meeting up of infertile couples. We are also planning an informal pilgrimage this Summer with a few couples to a shrine in New York City. Others have started powerful retreats for infertile couples, like Rebecca at The Road Home blog. Do something! Be creative and remember that just like no one was brought to the faith alone so too no one can grow during infertility alone. 

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