If you’re struggling with infertility this fall season, Halloween is one of those holidays that may be particularly hard for you. This very kid-focused holiday can be extremely triggering for anyone longing to have a child of their own. The reminders of what you’re trying to achieve are everywhere.
Your social media feeds start to fill up with picture after picture of cute babies and families dressed up in matching costumes, carving pumpkins, and school parades. And it seems impossible to hide from the doorbell on Halloween night, which brings all those children – and emotions– right to your doorstep.
While watching others enjoy this time spent with their kids can be challenging, you’re not alone. Almost 20% of women in the U.S. who are trying to conceive are coping with infertility issues. For some, hearing statistics like this does nothing to ease the pain and frustration of trying to grow your family. But maybe there’s a way to get through this holiday, and others, a little bit easier.
Let’s gather some ideas to help you feel better and enjoy this Halloween season.
It’s ok to turn off your porch light on Halloween.
You’re allowed to hide from Halloween altogether if that’s what you need to do to protect your heart. Turn off the porch light, nix the decorations, and don’t buy the candy.
It’s ok to skip family gatherings and trick-or-treating. Maybe even plan a little mini getaway so you won’t have to risk hearing the doorbell ring.
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Have an “adults only” Halloween.
If celebrating Halloween is still something you’d like to do, try having an “adults only” holiday. Forego the daytime celebrations where there’s bound to be kids around, and instead, stick to nighttime parties. Go to a costume party at a local brewery or bar. If no one is planning an adult party, host one yourself. You could even attend an adult Halloween parade or a witch’s ball, which is becoming increasingly popular in towns all over the country.
Turn off social media for a little bit.
Social media has this way of being extremely triggering for a lot of people – and it’s not just surrounding infertility. Suppose your Facebook feed brings you down a dark rabbit hole about Halloween, changes, and blocks some of the settings. Make it, so no Halloween content is allowed on your feed leading up to October 31st. You could even try unplugging for a few days if possible.
Stay off social media and let the holiday pass on. You might even find your hiatus from the online world to be very refreshing.
Enjoy a scary movie date night with your partner.
To redirect your feelings toward something positive focusing on the relationship between you and your partner is another great way to redirect your feelings toward something positive.
Spend quality time with the person you love. Plan a night for just the two of you. Make a nice dinner, dim the lights, and pour wine as you settle in for a scary movie on the couch.
Focus on the children in your life that you love.
Spending time with the children you already have in your life can help you cope with the emotions of not having any kids of your own. Nieces, nephews, and the children of your closest friends would love to have you around to help them carve pumpkins and go trick-or-treating.
Be honest with yourself and the parents of the kids, though – if it gets too hard and sticking around is making you feel worse, permit yourself to leave at any time.
Take care of yourself.
The most important thing is to take care of yourself. Finding ways to cope with infertility this holiday season is crucial for your physical and mental health. It’s okay to have whatever feelings you have surrounding this kid-centered holiday.
So whether that means avoiding the holiday altogether or only allowing adult-focused events to fill your calendar – do what you feel is right. If you decide to participate in any Halloween events, permit yourself to leave whenever necessary. Your mood may change from minute to minute, and there is no shame in walking away if you need to.