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Moving Forward after a Negative Result

Getting a big fat negative is the most upsetting thing when trying to get pregnant.……

Getting a big fat negative is the most upsetting thing when trying to get pregnant. You wait two long weeks to see if the process took and then see only one line or hear “it’s negative.” It is enough to make you crawl in bed for a week.

I had a year and a half of negative results before I finally got a call from the doctor. I picked up the phone expecting yet another rejection. “Your beta is high. I think they may have both took.” That was the only month in the year and a half I had resisted testing before the beta test.

There is no way around it, a negative result is a loss. Each month that conception didn’t work for me, I felt a loss of possibility. A lost opportunity. Another month passed.  More time wasted. More money wasted.  More anxiety gained.  These thoughts escalated into a physical and emotional response.

I began to notice a pattern as I brought awareness to this repetitively negative time of the month.  As I allowed myself to grieve for a few days, I would slowly pick myself up and seek a renewal of hope.  It became a cycle that I learned to be with, as opposed to resist. I prepared for it and planned for it. I would inform those close to me when it was time to test, so they could support me.

As I learned to be with the cycle of hope and despair, a layer of stress lifted.  My expectations became focused on feeling in the moment. Feeling my feet on the ground.  I put yellow post its all over my room saying, “everything in its own time.” I choose to believe it would happen. I choose to have hope again.

Three things to keep in mind after a getting a BFN.

  1. Just because something isn’t happening now, doesn’t mean it will never happen.  We sometimes loose sight of reality when we get a BFN and we can become very reactive.  Our minds have a tendency to have all or nothing thinking. Take a step back, allow yourself a couple days to grieve and let go.
  2. Begin planting seeds of mindfulness for your next cycle. Below is an exercise you can do to start being more accepting of this experience.
  3. Where there is a will there is a way! Continue to say this to yourself like a mantra. It will eventually infiltrate through to your subconscious and create more hope than you could possible ever imagine.

Mind Body Exercise:

Being present with your thoughts is a practical tool that can help reduce your stress and make you feel calmer.  Similar to focusing on the breath in a traditional meditation, noticing where our mind goes and what our minds are focusing on can be helpful in getting more in touch with our experiences and ourselves.

You would begin the exercise by sitting comfortably in a relaxed position.  Close your eyes and take three deep breaths. As thoughts emerge recognize them. Allow yourself to follow them.  You will drift in and out of “thinking mode” to being aware that you are “thinking”.  Notice this process.  As you recollect what you were thinking notice how you are recalling, probably only to find yourself back into a thought.

Part of this process includes “accepting” the thought process even if what comes up feels negative.  Allow yourself to be with the fear, the worry, the anxiety.  Once we can be with ourselves in these states, we can learn to change them.

Amira Posner

Amira Posner is Clinical Social Worker with a Bachelor and Masters Degrees in Social Work from the University of Manitoba. In addition to working with individuals, couples and families providing therapy in a secure and safe setting, she is a member of the Ontario Association of Social Workers (OASW) and Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers (OCSWSSW). Amira is also a certified hypnotherapist.

Amira Posner

July 7, 2023 • 3 minutes

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