Support Group Guidelines
Participants agree to adhere to the following guidelines:
1. I will keep all information shared in this group confidential, giving everyone the opportunity to share feelings and thoughts without their words being repeated outside the group. For educational purposes, information I learn in the group may be shared with my spouse as long as
it does not identify any group member.
2. I recognize that spouses or partners are welcome to attend, although it is not required.
3. I want to be accepted the way I am, so I will accept other group members just as they are, and avoid making judgments of any kind.
4. I know that we all have our own inner resources to deal with infertility; therefore, I will be respectful of the person sharing and not jump in or interrupt their story to offer solutions or advice unless asked. I may share ideas or resources during my time or general discussion time.
When it is my turn to speak, I am welcome to ask for feedback, if I wish.
5. I trust that my thoughts and feelings will be heard with respect and empathy. All feelings are okay. Feelings are neither right nor wrong, good nor bad. I do not need to rescue people from their feelings. Feelings do not need to be interpreted, analyzed, or judged. I understand that crying during support groups is common and an acceptable way to cope with infertility.
6. I recognize that my needs are important, and in this group I have an opportunity to share my thoughts, feelings, and experiences.
7. I trust that my silence will be honored if I do not wish to share.
8. I recognize that we are all in different places in our journey of infertility, that our paths may be different, and that some will achieve their goals of parenthood before others. I understand that even when a person has one or more children, they may still experience the emotional impact of
infertility and are welcome in this group. I realize the nature of an infertility group means members will become pregnant or adopt and are welcome to attend as they feel comfortable.
9. I have my own faith and belief and will honor and respect all others. I realize not everyone in the group may understand the religious or spiritual terms I use and will try to explain in a respectful way if needed.
10. I will be mindful of limited time and allow each person enough time to speak. I will limit the time I speak according to the size of each group meeting. I want my group to start and end on time; therefore I will do my best to arrive on time. Groups go from 7-9 pm.
11. I will give supportive attention to the person who is speaking and avoid side conversations or time on my phone. I will step out in the event of an emergency text message or phone call.
12. I realize that because it may be upsetting for other group members, infant-in-arms are only allowed at the Pregnancy and Parenting Support Group.