Online Infertility Support Communities

by sockii

If you are struggling with infertility, there are a number of great communities and organizations online where you can find support and acceptance.

For an individual or couple dealing with infertility, there is no reason to take on the battle alone. While it can be a difficult or even taboo subject to talk about in public or with family, there are many online support communities where you can chat, rant, laugh and find understanding individuals online. These are other women and men who have been through the battle as well and can share their experiences: going through infertility treatments, considering or pursuing adoption, dealing with friends and family, or adjusting to a life without children.

Each of these different online communities can have a different general atmosphere and focus. Some are much more focused on active treatment of infertility and political activism, while others are more for those who are choosing a childless life. Here I'll spotlight the communities and forums which I'm familiar with and have spent some time observing or taking part in. Hopefully you can find one that fits your needs and interests, and can help give you comfort and information on your own journey.

RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association

Political activism and awareness

RESOLVE is the US-based National Infertility Association, which works hard to get information on infertility out there to the public: to raise awareness of the disease, to fight for political rights and health care reform, and to provide information on treatment options for those coping with infertility. RESOLVE runs the annual National Infertility Awareness Week campaign every April, runs local in-person support groups, and also runs the "Walk of Hope" to raise awareness and funds for their efforts.

Online, RESOLVE also has a Facebook page where many connect and share their experiences, frustrations and questions about infertility. It's a good central place where many people may find "Facebook friends" and other blogs to follow related to infertility.

If I have one complaint about RESOLVE and their online community as a whole, however, it's that their focus seems to be very solidly on people actively pursuing infertility treatment or adoption - not on those working on accepting a childless lifestyle or who simply can't afford/aren't sure about going through IF treatment. One gets the sense from their posts, and from the posts of many others in the community, that if you don't exhaust every option, if you don't almost bankrupt yourself in your pursuit of having a child, then you don't really "deserve" to be there (at least, that was the impression I often had while on their Facebook page.)

News from RESOLVE's Center for Infertility Justice Blog:

Gateway Women

A blog and large community for the childless by circumstance

Gateway Women is a community and website run by Jody Day, an outspoken activist for women who are coping with being childless "by circumstance"—be it through infertility, lack of a partner, or perhaps being with a partner who does not want children. As such the community itself is more diverse than you find in many infertility-focused groups, and can be more supportive and welcoming to those who perhaps decided not to pursue treatment for IF or tried it and did not succeed in having a child (a far more common situation than most fertility clinics and their propaganda materials want you to believe.)

Gateway Women and Jody run in-person workshops and meetings in the UK, but wherever you live you can join their support forums. There is a public page on Facebook, but more valuable for many has been their private online community. I watched the community grow from about 400 members to over the 1,000 in the course of one year—so large, in fact, that it really began to outgrow the limitations of the early Google+ community format. The community now has a membership fee to join, £60 a year and you can try it out for free for a month's trial before making a payment. Personally, I chose to leave the community once it went to paid access and have some issues with that change; however, many remain active members and consider it an incredibly valuable support system. I still follow the Facebook page, however.

Latest Posts from the Gateway Women Blog
Caroline Thurling is a counsellor, coach and consultant living in Australia. At the heart of all her work is helping people to be brave in thought, spirit and love – f...
Julia Leigh is a novelist and film-maker from Australia who has written an exquisite gem of a memoir of going through unsuccessful fertility treatments, to be publishe...
One week today, on Monday 27th June 2016 I’ll be part of the UK’s second Ageing Without Children conference. It’s the next hurdle (of many) to face w...
I don’t really know how to start this, as there are so many taboos and niceties banging against my consciousness, as a woman, as a feminist. But here it is: I...

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Life Without Baby

For those ready to move on

Life Without Baby is a great website, blog and community for those who are ready to move on with life, when a baby is not in the picture. The community/forum is members-only, and not on Facebook - so you can share with others in private. While not a highly active community (mostly a few posts a day), it is a good one for those looking to share frustrations and experiences in a safe space. The blog tackles many great topics on navigating life surrounded by "fertiles", and when one has ever given up on infertility treatment or decided against it in the first place.

Life Without Baby also has a Facebook page, where you can keep track of their latest blog posts:

999 Reasons to Laugh at Infertility

Bringing a little needed humor into the infertility battle

Sometimes you just need to laugh, when dealing with the frustrations and social issues of infertility. 999 Reasons to Laugh at Infertility does exactly that - take on the issues of infertility with a sense of humor. Primarily a blog taking on such topics as "Your Aunt Mildred Thinks that Trying to get Pregnant is Fun", "Surviving the 'Are you Pregnant' Holiday Question" and "You Thought You had Morning Sickness But it was Really the Flu", 999 Reasons tackles those painful topics that often make us wince but become more tolerable when we can laugh and relate to others who have "been there" before.

999 Reasons also has a Facebook page, where you can add your own reasons to "laugh" and share experiences with others who have been there and done that far too many times already.

Now you can get the book, too!

Best of 999 Reasons to Laugh at Infertility

• Have you ever cried in a restaurant bathroom because you got your period? • Do you feel like everyone on Facebook is pregnant but you? • Do you examine the toilet paper on a r...

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Infertility Awareness Community on Facebook

For those seeking treatment and in need of support

Infertility Awareness is a page on Facebook, where many coping with infertility and IF treatment come to share their heartbreak, frustrations, and also success stories. The community has been online since 2010 and takes a strong stance against solicitation (those people posting with their "miracle cures" in comments) and inspiring as well as allowing members to vent.

While I was a member of this community for a while, I actually left it because I did not feel especially welcome as a woman choosing not to pursue IF treatment. (I'm also not as comfortable sharing in an open Facebook community as in a private forum.) But I literally was made to feel unwelcome by some members of the group who seemed to feel I didn't belong there or wasn't fighting against infertility hard enough to actually "deserve" a child like they did. That was some months ago...perhaps the atmosphere in the group has changed since then.

There are many more infertility and childless-support communities out there!

These are just a few...

This page will be expanded as I find and research more infertility and living-without-children support communities on line. Below is a list of others I currently know about and have confirmed are still active. This list will be expanded in the future.


Other support groups and forums online

For infertilty support and/or childfree living
  • Infertility Support Forum Messageboard

    An active messageboard forum from - focused primarily on experiences with and questions about fertility treatments.

  • Fertile Thoughts

    A very active forum primarily for those currently Trying To Conceive (TTC) while battling infertility. Features many sub-boards and specific topic forums such as "Endometriosis", "Cancer and Infertility", "Secondary Infertility", GBLT and infertile and much more.

  • Infertility Support Forum at Fertility Friends

    An active UK-based forum with an extensive breakdown of subtopics, including treatment options, alternative medicine, adoption experiences, infertility in the news, moving on after infertility and regional/local experiences with fertility clinics and practitioners.

  • Infertility Support - iVillage

    Described as being "where women in all stages of their infertility battle discuss various tests and treatments they are undergoing." There only seems to be a handful of new posts per month, so this is not an especially active forum.

  • IVF Connections

    "A members-only forum where "'just relax' and 'just adopt' are four-letter words".

  • Male Infertility and Mens Fertility Forum

    Infertility is an issue that affects men as well - yet very few support communities exist specifically for mens' issues and questions. This website and forum fulfills that need.

  • The Broken Brown Egg

    While infertility is an issue in all communities, there are particular issues, misconceptions and cultural aspects that affect the African-American community especially. As their mission statement reads, "The goal of The Broken Brown Egg is to start the dialogue and encourage African Americans to talk about this topic so that those dealing with fertility concerns and reproductive health issues won't feel so alone, through humor, activism, and hope. "

Updated: 04/27/2015, sockii
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