This week we had the pleasure of interviewing Andrea Syrtash, A nationally recognized relationship expert, author and the founder of pregnantish.com, the first-ever digital lifestyle magazine dedicated to support and provide reliable resources for those going through fertility treatments and dealing with infertility. Just talking to Andrea, we can’t help but feeling inspired and hopeful and we hope this will inspire you too!
“I’ve spent my career helping people navigate their relationships. I’m an author, a relationship coach, a columnist and an on-air personality (meaning, I’m on TV often sharing advice)!
While I was ‘out there’ in the media and at speaking engagements, I was secretly trying to manage the experience of infertility. Since I was 14 I’ve had an issue here, so I always felt it would take longer to get or stay pregnant – but I never imagined it would take this long (almost at 8 years)!
Through this experience, I found myself frustrated by the many misconceptions and the lack of good content out there. I should note: there were (and are!) great medical and advocacy sites out there and there were good blogs…but I’m talking about an independent editorial source for all things related to infertility and/or fertility treatments. Why was this a vertical that was relegated to parenting sites only? (By the way, sometimes a parenting site is the worst place to go when you’re infertile!) I’m a content creator. I’ve written published books and well-researched articles for people who want better relationships. I didn’t understand why there was so little high-quality and curated content in this category. This is not a fringe trend! The audience navigating infertility and/or fertility treatments is large and they’re smart and thoughtful.
The product at pregnantish is content. We do this through high-quality articles (with over 30 professional writers), great live events around Canada and the US and professionally recorded digital programs. (We filmed the initial video series at NBC Studios). Our goal is to better support singles, couples, LGBT on this journey of trying to get pregnant with help.
The reason I felt I was the right person to the launch this is because I’m an ovary-achiever (I’ve gone through so many treatments and know this space well!) and I knew that this is a big relationship trend that is rarely positioned this way. Infertility affects relationships in the deepest way: the relationship you have with your partner, the relationship you have with your friends and family, the relationships you have at work and the relationship you have with yourself and your own body. All of these are challenged.”
“People in war-torn countries get pregnant every day, so I never want people to blame themselves too much for their infertility! That said, calming the body, mind, and spirit through this experience is helpful, whenever possible. It’s so important to practice self-care. You don’t want to add stress or guilt or pressure to a process that already has that built in.
One of the best things I did before one of my IVF treatments was, remind myself to stay present and not to over analyze every single number every day. I’ve learned through these years and many treatments how dynamic the results (and our hormones and bodies!) are. It’s so easy to get wrapped up in the small details. This has helped me feel less stressed during treatment(s). In general, when we’re present we can acknowledge our feelings and breathe deeply through them….”
“It’s been helpful to connect with others on this journey, to feel less alone. When you’re going through infertility, you sometimes think that everyone is getting pregnant and having babies but you! I’ve learned that you never really know what happens in the lives of the people you envy. Not everyone’s had an easy or linear path to parenthood, even when it appears that they have.”
“There’s a whole ecosystem of support out there for the mind, body and spirit! There are incredible counselors and wonderful practitioners in place to help you during this journey. My biggest advice is that one size doesn’t fit all! One person may swear by acupuncture while another may find it stressful. There are also great (live) support groups in most cities and through many of the clinics.”
“Expect the unexpected! And – this happens to so many more people than you know. You’re not the only one….”
“Please join our great and growing community at pregnantish! We’ve been live for about a year, and our audience is so supportive and kind. We’re on the major social networks @pregnantish and on twitter @pregnantishmag. We also have a newsletter so you can stay informed about our live events and receive motivational content along the way.
Finally: I’ve learned that if you want to be a parent, you will be. You may not know the when, the how, the where but if you know the what (that you will be a parent), you’ll find a path towards it. There are so many more options today than there were when past generations struggled with the disease of infertility.”
To find out more about Andrea Syrtash visit pregnantish . You can also follow along @pregnantish on Facebook and Instagram, and @pregnantishmag on twitter.