Shopping for friends on a fertility journey: infertility gifts

Struggling to find a last-minute gift for a close friend going through a fertility struggle? We’re here to help.

This is a sensitive time of year for many people, and for those with fertility struggles, the holidays can be a painful reminder of the families they are trying to build. If you want to give a thoughtful gift to your friend who’s dealing with infertility, you have quite a few options. There are many lists sharing the best infertility gifts – from mindful jewelry made of fertility-related stones to pineapple-emblazoned socks and clothing. But how do you know whether these gifts are appropriate for your loved one? We’re breaking it down. 

Our best recommendations

We know that your aim is to provide your friend with a thoughtful, supportive gift this season. That may mean an infertility-related present, but keep in mind that receiving these gifts can just be another difficult reminder of this draining experience. If you want to support your friend, we recommend a gift that is unrelated to fertility and provides them with a fun experience or relaxing activity.

For your friends going through infertility, we recommend these gifts:

  • A fun activity like an escape room, arcade, or cooking class 
  • A relaxing spa treatment or at-home self care package 
  • A nice bottle of wine or voucher to their favorite restaurant
  • Good old-fashioned quality time

“But what about…”

Hopeful gifts

There are many “hopeful” infertility gifts for men and women, from necklaces and charms stamped with “Hope” or “Believe,” to shirts, mugs, and more. These can be lovely if your friend regularly rocks this style of accessory. But proceed with caution: you don’t want to risk your friend perceiving this gift as downplaying the severity of their struggle, medical condition, or work so far. However, if your friend loves inspirational quotes and messages, this might be a nice option. 

Loss related gifts

There are many beautiful gifts for parents who have experienced loss, from embryo paintings to delicate angel-wing jewelry. However, we all know that this type of loss is extremely sensitive. Your friend may not be ready to receive a reminder of their loss, and that’s okay. We recommend skipping these gifts, or checking in with your friend or someone close to them to gauge whether this type of infertility gift would be appreciated or hurtful.

Pregnancy related gifts

We recommend against pregnancy-related gifts for friends going through infertility. Many women undergoing fertility struggles have shared the pain they feel when they open that drawer and see all of the baby and pregnancy-related items they haven’t yet been able to use. The holidays are a time of love and joy, so it may feel natural to try to support your friend’s journey with this type of gift, but unfortunately it might just cause too much pain. We recommend skipping any baby supplies or pregnancy-related gifts for your loved ones struggling with fertility this season.

Fertility advice books and gifts 

Chances are, your friend is already working with a whole fertility team, so giving the gift of a fertility coaching session or fertility help book isn’t advised. Many people trying to conceive purchase these items themselves as well, so we’d bet your friend already has plenty of fertility books, articles, and more. A good alternative could be a fun fiction book or a journal they can fill with whatever they wish.

Remember, there’s more to your friend than infertility

We know it’s important to you to support your friend through their fertility journey. And we commend that! But remember, there are ways you can do so without gifting them something fertility-related. Lending a helping hand with other stressful parts of life or helping provide a fun, de-stressing activity may be the best way to support your friends. 

Fertility gifts are lovely, but they can be a minefield as people’s infertility experiences are diverse. There’s no one-size-fits-all gift for anyone, and unfortunately the same is true for your friends experiencing infertility. The good news is that your friend has YOU – a supportive presence they know they can turn to when they need it. Sometimes the best gift of all is just being present: checking in on your friends and letting them know that they can lean on you if they need to.

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