Dealing with a failed IVF transfer
Losing a cycle and feeling sad about it is a normal part of getting better after one fails. It’s like throwing away your dreams, throwing away a valuable fetus, and throwing away your future.
When something doesn’t work out as planned, it’s natural to wonder why, if there’s anything you can do to improve the situation, when you can try again, and what you can do better next time. Unfortunately, it can feel like you’re waiting forever to get a follow-up visit at the assisted conception units, and the staff is often overwhelmed.
Waiting even longer while processing the disappointment of a failed IVF is challenging. No one else seemed to understand how sad I was to lose my embryo and the future life it represented. When I heard the news, I felt alone and unsupported.
To get over that, a lot of time had to pass. But, in the end, I was able to pick myself up and do what I could, and now I’m here to offer some advice that might be useful to you:
Dealing with the Outcome
Don’t rush through the grieving process. If you’re feeling down, know that that’s okay, and you shouldn’t try to suppress those feelings. If you still feel depressed after trying self-help methods, it might help to talk to a professional counselor.
It would help if you prioritized your health.It’s crucial to tend to your own emotional and physical health. Indulge in a pastime that brings you joy and calm for a while. Spend time doing things that make you feel emotionally and mentally stronger.
Spend some quality time together processing your reactions to the result. What do you want to do next, and what information do you seek? Take this opportunity to strengthen your bonds with one another.
Schedule some enjoyable activities for you and your loved ones (spouse, kids, and parents) to enjoy together. Having this to look forward to also means spending more time with the people you care about. Choose friends who will make you feel better instead of worse and who can understand your feelings instead of adding to them.
Participate in a peer support system, either in person or online. You will find comfort in the company of kind individuals who can relate to what you’re going through.
Don’t be afraid to probe. Get your questions answered so you can move forward with confidence, whether deciding to try IVF treatment again, taking a break from fertility treatment, or looking into alternative options for becoming a parent.
After an unsuccessful attempt, it’s essential to reflect on the following questions.
“Having placed all your hopes on it, you are at a loss for action when it fails to deliver.” Even though I had hoped to conceive naturally, I had always intended on going to IVF as a last resort. When something fails, we offer our best guesses as to why it didn’t work to figure out what went wrong.
Getting to the bottom of what went wrong would do wonders for our morale; we’d feel empowered to do better the next time if we knew what caused the failure in the first place.
As IVF doctors, we can adjust depending on what we’ve learned from this cycle. However, there are also questions you may ask yourself to aid in your recovery and progress.
What did I do well this time around?
Eating right, getting more shut-eye, trying alternative therapies like acupuncture, or joining a support group are all viable options.
IVF doctors suggest you consider which aspects of your treatment regimen—physical or mental—made you feel the most comfortable and do more of them during the next cycle.
How can I get back on track after this unsuccessful cycle?
Think back on times when you overcame adversity and found success; maybe there’s a tactic you used then that would help you today.
“Socializing, taking breaks, writing in a journal, and meditating all count.” Just know that you deserve the space and time you’re giving yourself right now to grieve and heal.
Make use of the people who have your back and the strategies you know work. Advice, compassion, and support from those who can relate can be found in abundance at support groups.
This failed cycle taught us what?
And what can we do differently next time to improve our success rate based on this data?
Bring questions for your IVF doctor and yourself to IVF clinics during the follow-up session to learn what you can change to increase your chances of a successful outcome (different medication, higher dosage, different protocol, add-on treatments).
Consult your IVF doctor for guidance based on your unique situation.
Keep in mind that you aren’t being asked to assign blame to either yourself or the IVF clinic; you are being asked to consider what steps you may take to improve your odds and foster a sense that the outcome could have been different.