Getting Your Period When You're Trying to Conceive

Coping with Getting Your Period When You Were Hoping to Be Pregnant

Woman leaning over the sink with her head in her hand, disappointed she got her period when she wanted to be pregnant
It's normal to feel disappointed and even sad when your period arrives, when you had hoped to be pregnant. Terry Vine / Blend Images / Getty Images

Getting your period when you’re trying to get pregnant is rarely easy. The two week wait (the time between ovulation and your expected period) can be full of hope and anxiety. You may spend those days taking note of every early pregnancy sign. You feel pregnant. You're sure this month will be your month.

You might imagine taking a pregnancy test and finally seeing a positive result.

And then... your period comes.

It's disappointing. And heartbreaking. Even if you've gone through this over and over for months, it still hurts.

If this was a fertility treatment cycle, the emotional distress can be even greater.

Here's how to cope when Aunt Flo shows up at your door.

Schedule Some Grieving Time

It’s completely normal to feel sadness and frustration nasty Aunt Flow arrives. But you don’t want to be feeling that sadness and frustration your entire period.

It can help to schedule some time for sadness.

You might tell yourself that you’re going to get out your tears and pouting out on the day you get your period. However, on the second day of your cycle, you’re going to do your best to move forward.

What if you’re still feeling the sadness on day two? Don’t just push it aside.

Instead, you can “schedule” maybe 15 minutes for letting out the tears.

It sounds weird -- scheduling your emotions -- but this actually can help.

Save Extra Special Self-Care Treats

Menstruation is a great time for extra self-care.

You might save some special herbal tea for this time, only taking it out during menstruation.

Or maybe you set aside scented lotions or soaps. Light some candles.

Dim the lights and spend time drawing, knitting, or doing whatever hobby you have that you enjoy.

This isn't wasting time. It isn't silly to take extra care of yourself when you're feeling down. Actually, it's the best way to start to feel better.

You may have a strong urge to gorge on junk food. This is partially due to hormones and partially due to stress. A better choice is to make yourself an extra healthy, feel-good dinner.

You might decide to make one a meals that takes more effort than you normally have time for. Maybe you'll look up a new recipe to try.

I’m not saying you should deny yourself chocolate completely. I’m quite the chocoholic myself!

But it’s too easy to eat tons of junk food when you’re feeling sad. This may lead to regret. The tasty-feel-good dinner trick has helped me get past junk food temptation many times.

Invest in Cloth Menstrual Pads

This may sound a little weird, but investing in cloth menstrual pads helped me cope during a miscarriage.

I figured if I had to bleed, I was going to bleed in style. They made such a difference in how I felt.

These days, I'm a big fan of menstrual cups. They can also make your period more comfortable.

You're already having a difficult time emotionally. Might as well be physically comfortable!

  • DivaCup (Pre-Childbirth Size)
  • DivaCup (Size 2, Post Childbirth Size)

Avoid Pregnancy Test Regret

Though tempting, taking multiple pregnancy tests during the two week wait before your period is late does not make getting your period any easier.

Once you do get your period, you may regret wasting the tests and throwing away money on them.

Talk to Someone About Your Disappointment

Perhaps the only thing worse than feeling depressed when you get your period is feeling alone with your sadness.

Don’t keep it all to yourself.

Call up a close friend who knows about your trying to conceive troubles. Connect with fellow infertiles online.

You might also consider seeing and speaking with a professional counselor, especially one with experience with infertility clients. Speaking to a counselor helped me find my way through two week waits, disappointing periods, and stressful fertility treatments.

One last thought...

Though your period signals the end of one cycle, it is at the same time the beginning of a new one.

The idea of yet another cycle can feel overwhelming. However, a new cycle is also another chance, a new hope. And, maybe, this period will be the last one for the next nine months.

More on coping while trying to conceive:

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