Stressed Out About Fertility? Start Laughing!
March 02, 2010
Whether you’ve been trying to conceive for a few months or a few years,
chances are at some point you’ve felt stressed out about it. Well, in
this case laughter really might be the best medicine.
Erin Miserlis of San Diego, California, drove her husband’s sperm
sample to their fertility clinic to undergo another artificial
insemination procedure, a stream of bizarre thoughts ran through her
head. “I’d look at it thinking, ‘Good God, is this going to be my kid?
And what if I get pulled over? What do I tell the cop—I’m in a hurry
because I’ve got my future child next to me?’ These are the things that
are so ridiculous you can only laugh at them.”
Miserlis cope with the stress of five long years of fertility
treatments. (She ultimately conceived her two children naturally and is
now writing a book about her sometimes-humorous journey.) But you don’t
have to have been trying for years to be stressed out about babymaking.
Even a few months without success can take its toll. As hard as it may
be to find humor in something that really isn’t funny, experts say it
could actually help.
“I really do believe that [humor] is one of
many healthy, affordable ways to cope with all the stress,” says Alison
Wilson, Ph.D., a licensed psychologist at the Colorado Center for
Reproductive Medicine in Denver. Not being able to get pregnant when
you want to can be a very distressing time, “and throwing a little
humor in there can be so beneficial.”