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I have many friends who are trying so hard to conceive, and with no luck. Inevitably we have discussions about this, just in the normal course of conversations. What are the best things to say to support my friends who are going through this? What things that people say are really kind or meaningful? Or is the best advice to just keep my mouth shut and listen? I have not been through this myself, but I love my friends and want to be there for them. thanks for your help!
 

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I can tell you the worst thing that happened to me was the way my best friend at the time called me and said she'd just found out she was pregnant, on the first try, etc etc. There had to have been a nicer way to tell me! (like preface it with I know you're having difficulty and I hope you have success soon...) Also don't tell them to just relax. As for what *to* say...I guess just let them know you know how much they want it, it's so hard for them to go through all this, etc.
 

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I can certainly tell you what NOT to say!! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> After awhile, I stopped mentioning that we were TTC. So when we did finally get pregnant, a lot of people said "Oh, I didn't realize you were still trying!". <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
So many people say dumb things without thinking, and so few people say what you really want to hear which is "I can only imagine how hard this is for you right now, but please know that if you ever need to talk, or yell, or if you just need a shoulder to cry on - I'm here for you because I care."<br><br>
That's the best advice I can give!
 

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I love it when my girl friends will call and just say that they were thinking of me and ask about how things are going. Then if I feel like venting - I do... If not, I just say that everything is going <however I feel about it at the time> and then we go on to talk about other things. I find the most supported I feel is by those friends who dont offer up stories of others successes, dont try to offer remedies or suggestions on things they heard may work, and dont patronize me by saying that it will happen when the time is right etc... the most support is just from those who listen to me and just ask questions about what I'm going through.
 

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I have a whole list of what not to say -- but I think for me, what to say would have been pretty easy. "I'm so sorry you're going through this; you guys would be great parents, and I'm really hoping it happens for you."
 

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I agree with all the pps. I would also add that after awhile, infertility becomes this heavy burden you aren't supposed to talk about anymore. People get tired of hearing about it. Having a friend or two who asks about things periodically and genuinely listens to all the crappiness of infertility is invaluable.<br>
Simple things are nice too, like a sympathetic look when someone anounces a pregnancy while you are together. I will also never, never forget the day two friends and I were talking about my infertility and one of my friend's *cried* with me. At that particular moment, I wasn't actually very emotional about it, but seeing that a friend cared so much about my situation that it reduced her to tears nearly broke my heart. In a good way. Someone also told me once that I would make a beautiful pregnant woman. Another friend saw me interacting with a child and said that she couldn't wait to see me parent my children, cause she thought I'd be great. Another friend of mine is a great support - she doesn't minimize things or trivialize what dh and I are feeling, but she is unfailingly confident that we will have children. And she shares that confidence with us, which is great.<br>
Kudos to you for wanting to be supportive with this. And, how neat that your friend has other friends dealing with infertility. What a support network. Not that it's good that any of them are dealing with infertility, just that it can be very isolating. Peers are valuable.<br>
Best,<br>
Katia
 

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Being concerned about it shows you're a good friend, because you're already trying to be sensitive to their very raw feelings. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br><br>
Here is an excellent article from one of the national infertility organizations:<br><a href="http://www.resolve.org/site/PageServer?pagename=cop_tainf_jffaf" target="_blank">The Dos and Don'ts of Support</a><br><br>
and<br><br>
an equally excellent article that can help you understand what they're going through and the types of things that are and are not helpful to them:<br><a href="http://www.resolve.org/site/PageServer?pagename=lrn_ffaf_ie" target="_blank">Infertility Etiquette.</a>
 

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Somewhere in a previous thread there are huge lists of what not to say.<br><br>
But as for what to say, be understanding, supportive, and listen a lot. Put yourself in their place as much as you can and think about what you'd want to hear.<br><br>
I never got upset for anyone who said stuff along the lines of, "I'm sorry you have to deal with this, but I'm here for you as much as I can be and I really hope it works out for you." That's supportive but not at all dismissive, condescending, or any of the other problems with what most people say.
 

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I, too, have a huge list of things not to say. I won't get into it though. I think the best thing is to listen. I agree with Selkat, there are times when someone asks and I answer and their eyes glaze over, so I don't talk about it any more. I have a great friend who will listen to me when I need to vent, and she doesn't offer the advise that I hate to hear (relax, go on a vacation, yadda yadda) she just listens, and I appreciate it so much.
 
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