Coaching Infertile Couples

What does a fertility coach do?  Who uses one, and why?  Even if you don’t have — or want one — can you learn anything valuable from one?

Meet Anya Sizer, a fertility coach for three years and, as of yesterday, the Fertility Support Coordinator for London Women’s Clinic.  Her role is “to help couples look for ways through The Maze,” and to help them maintain their equilibrium in the process.

If you were considering working with her, and were meeting her for the first time, she’d start by sharing her story.  “Infertility was one of the toughest battles of my life,” she says.  “I really struggled in every way.”  Now the mother of two children conceived through IVF, she is certain “God is the one who got me through my struggles — and now, He’s put me in the position of being able to help others.”

As an infertility “alumna” with life coach training, she brings both compassion and empowering wisdom to each unique relationship.  Because of her experience — both personal and professional — “I’m in a good position to support others,” she says.

The role she plays in each couple’s infertility journey is rooted in scripture:  “I believe we should comfort others with the comfort we received.”  That pay-it-forward mentality derives from II Corinthians 1: 3-4, but Anya doesn’t necessarily say so to her clients.  “My faith is completely essential to every area of my life, and my work is simply a part of that.”

Anya’s primary role is to help couples look at the big picture.  “Together, we look at what is needed, what will help, how to build a strong support team, and what unique resources they can bring to the situation.”

Ultimately, her goal is to equip couples to deal with infertility in healthy ways that respect the participants, their relationship, and the need for emotional and psychological balance throughout the journey.  Personal experience has taught her that’s easier said than done.

“One client decided some very negative things about herself and her body after failed IVF cycles.  She was thinking it was all over… that her body was faulty.  We looked at the truth, rather than the emotions.  Ultimately, she decided to carry on with treatment, but far more importantly, she stopped berating herself and her body for not doing better.”

What messages does Anya hope every infertile couple will internalize?  “That God loves you and hasn’t forgotten you.  That it’s okay to feel angry, sad, frustrated, and everything in between.  That God is big enough to deal with that.  That you can keep going.  That you’ve got to get support, and that you are NOT alone.”

How does she communicate those messages?   By embodying compassion, modeling grace, and encouraging forgiveness (of partners, and of selves).  She guides couples through the infertility journey in God-honoring ways, whether she mentions God or not.  “Ninety percent of my clients aren’t Christians,” she explains, “but I know God still cares and loves them.”

What’s the most satisfying part of her work?  “I worked with one client for about two years,” she recalls.  “She faced such a huge battle… and yet she fought on, and now she has a beautiful little girl.  After her daughter was born, she invited me to meet this little miracle.”

How was that moment?

“Amazing.”

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For more resources and cause for hope, visit PregnantWithHope.com

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Filed under Battles, Bystanders, Hope, Perspective

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