by Erin Zammett Ruddy, REDBOOK
"Have you tried IVF/acupuncture/headstands?"
"So often, the instinct is to fix things. What's more important is to listen," explains Barbara Collura, executive director of Resolve, the national infertility association. "'If you want to talk, I'm here' - that's all I wanted my friends to tell me," says Colleen Dippel, 39, who struggled with infertility for years before giving birth to her son and adopting her daughter. "Each infertility case is unique, so advice doesn't help. Knowing there's someone to talk to is what friendship is really about."
Related: 5 Dresses Every Woman Should Own
"Just relax and it will happen."
"There are so many myths about fertility issues," says Kristin Foristall, 34, who used IVF to have her daughter. "I tried relaxing. I stopped drinking coffee. I meditated. Sorry, that didn't fix my problem. Science did!" In fact, a recent study found that stress does not compromise a woman's chance of getting pregnant. Plus, such comments risk minimizing a friend's situation, Collura says.
Related: REDBOOK'S Top Beauty Products for 2011
"I know you're going to be upset, but I'm pregnant."
Sharing pregnancy news - yours or a mutual friend's - is tricky, but don't assume you know what reaction you'll get. "Most women want to hear about other people's baby news, in a matter-of-fact way and early enough so they're not the last to know," says Collura. As Peggy Strickler, 39, who went through infertility treatments for seven years before having her son, says, "There is a mix of feelings, certainly, but happiness for a friend generally prevails."
More from REDBOOK:
Could You Go a Week Without Yelling?
Have the Hottest Sex of Your Life…with Your Husband
- 6 Shocking Reasons Why Men Stray
- 101 Date Night Ideas
- Get More on Love, Family & Fashion - Subscribe to REDBOOK & Save Up to 84%!
Connect with REDBOOK:
- Become our Fan on Facebook
- Sign Up for REDBOOK's Free Weekly Newsletter
- Follow Us on Twitter
- Enter to Win FREE Daily Prizes
Reprinted with permission of Hearst Communications, Inc.