Top Tips for Managing Your Emotions While Trying to Conceive

Trying to conceive (TTC) can be an emotionally challenging time, but being as prepared as possible for the ups and downs can help make it less overwhelming. Luckily, there are plenty of things you can do to make this part of the fertility journey easier on you (and your partner).

Disclaimer: We understand that this may be a sensitive topic for some, so please proceed reading with caution or avoid this particular article if TTC is a difficult topic for you.

We understand that there are different ways of conceiving. For the purpose of this article, we are using the example of natural conception.

Know the Facts

Start with the basics and do your research. Knowing the facts surrounding fertility can really help you to feel more in control of the process, as well as help you to manage expectations. You can find out what time of the month you’re likely to ovulate, what happens when you ovulate, and discover the different ways in which you can try to boost your chances of conceiving.

If you’re coming off the pill or another form of contraceptive, read up about this process or discuss it with your GP. Find out how it might affect fertility and your cycle. One of the most common questions asked is: ‘how long does it take to conceive after coming off contraceptive?’. Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all answer as everybody’s fertility journey is totally unique.

Stay Busy and Try Not to Hyper Focus on Conceiving

As the saying goes: a watched pot never boils. Try to remember that TTC is only one aspect of your life. While that is happening, continue to keep yourself busy with all your other engagements, hobbies and work responsibilities. Distract yourself by meeting up with friends, going to the gym or playing sports, watching films or reading a book. Hyper focussing on conceiving tends to put a lot of unnecessary pressure on many people, and this kind of pressure can have the opposite effect on your fertility than what you’re after.

Resist the Urge to Test Too Often

With home pregnancy tests so readily available, it can be difficult to resist the urge to test regularly. However, similarly to above, while the excitement of a late period or inexplicable nausea can be enough to get your heart racing with hope, testing too often can become discouraging. Taking a pregnancy test can heighten your expectations, leaving you all the more disappointed if it turns out to be negative. As such, try your best to protect your (and your partner’s) hopes by restricting your tests until after your period is at least several days overdue.

Resist the Urge to Talk About it Too Often

It is totally up to your own discretion to talk about your fertility journey, and to share it with whomever you like. You’re excited and looking forward to starting/expanding your family - it’s exciting news! However, you may find that over time, talking about TTC with your friends, family and colleagues can become disheartening. Likewise, the more you talk about it, the more likely people are to ask you for updates on the process. These kinds of conversations can cause a whirlwind of emotions and put more pressure on you. You can protect your feelings by fielding any questions with a pre-planned, stock standard response like: ‘I’ll let you know as soon as I have an update’.

It’s Okay to Take a Break

As with everything else in life, sometimes a break can make a world of difference when it comes to TTC. You’re likely using fertility tracking apps or ovulatory predictor kits to track your cycle, which can be very helpful. However, if the cycle of tracking, baby-making, and waiting for your period is getting you down, it’s okay to take a break. In fact, in terms of your mental and emotional health (and likely the health of your relationship with your partner) it might be the best choice.

Taking a break doesn’t have to mean anything drastic. It simply means allowing yourself a break from tracking, testing and scheduled sex.

Stay Sexy

Speaking of scheduled baby-making sessions… For some, the act of lovemaking can get lost in the pursuit of pregnancy. Again, this can be an area where people tend to place high expectations on themselves and their partners. Try to keep your sex life light, sexy and fun while trying for a baby. You can do this by introducing a new routine or ditching a routine completely by being more spontaneous. Perhaps you could use a change of scenery or put a little extra effort into ‘setting the mood’.

Be Kind to Yourself

Be kind to yourself during this part of your journey. Practise patience, non-judgement and non-blaming. There will be highs and there will be lows. On the down days, treat yourself to extra self-care practices and remind yourself that this is a marathon, not a sprint. Remind yourself that you (and your partner) are doing your best and that is enough.

Get Expert Support

For external support and guidance, you can chat with your GP about potential fertility treatments and lifestyle changes. You can also contact a local fertility clinic for counselling, or join an in-person or online support group.


External Support

TTC Support UK (private Facebook group)
Fertility Network UK
Human Fertilisation & Embryology Authority – motional support
Mira – support
Fertility Help Hub – support and advice