Coaching makes your fertility journey easier

Posted on: 10th February, 2014

Category: Health & Lifestyle

Contributor: West Cork People

One in  six couples in Ireland struggle to conceive a child naturally and find themselves in the position of having to decide whether or not to undergo fertility treatment. Fertility and Relationship Coach Joan O’Connell says there is no typical ‘infertility candidate’ and although age can be a factor, particularly for women, fertility issues can affect both male and female regardless of age.

Up to as many as one in five couples can be affected by unexplained infertility. If you are currently undergoing fertility treatment or trying to make the decision whether or not to have fertility treatment then you know all about the disappointment, doubts, fears, frustration, anger and emotional rollercoaster that goes hand in hand with finding yourself in that position. It’s not just the variety of fertility treatments that are available, (that in itself is a huge area) but also the worry of what effect the treatment will have on you and your partner. Then there is the cost and how will you manage to afford it, wondering if it will work, how long will it take, what is really involved and how will you get through it and survive from an emotional, physical and relationship standpoint.

Infertility is very much a hidden issue, not spoken openly about and suffered very much in silence by many couples and individuals who find themselves in the situation. These couples really need support and help to get them through the process and at the same time maintain some joy and normality in their lives and their relationship as they go through their journey.

Many couples feel they cannot share the fact that they are having fertility treatment with their friends and family. This is a very personal journey and very often couples experience deep feelings of isolation and loneliness, a sense of shame and disappointment not living up to what they themselves and society expect, not wanting to disappoint parents expecting to become grandparents, a sense of failure at not being able to have a baby like all their friends and so on.

My step by step Fertility Coaching Programme focuses on five key areas where individuals and couples undergoing fertility treatment come under pressure in their relationships. In my Coaching Programme I focus on areas such as;

Right Decision — is fertility treatment the right option for you and your partner?; Managing Emotions, identifying what triggers particular emotions and how to deal with and prevent/protect yourself from those triggers; Identity, how to maintain a sense of your own identity which can be really difficult as fertility treatment can become all consuming; Coaching through the fertility treatment focusing on developing and maintaining a sense of future regardless of outcomes; Handling the results increasing emotional stability and the wherewithal to handle the outcome of treatment.

Along with all of this, working with me provides you with a safe, secure environment where you can talk openly and honestly without judgement and in complete confidence.

As someone who spent over six years living and dealing with infertility, I am very aware of the stress and pressure felt by individuals and couples in this situation. As an experienced coach, I can provide you with tools, strategies and supports that will make the journey easier and ensure that whatever the outcome, your will manage your experience more successfully and may even look back on it as a time of self-discovery and personal enlightment.

If you are coping with fertility issues, please feel free to contact me by phone or email to set up an appointment. All my clients are dealt with in the strictness confidence.


Joan O Connell

Qualified Coach Fertility & Relationship Coach

Tel 087 1126201


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Ballineen Foróige Young Engineers Exhibition 23 February 2018

The inaugural Ballineen Foróige Young Engineers Exhibition will take place in Gort Mhuire Hall in Ballineen this Friday 23rd February. As part of Engineers Week 2018, leaders and members of Ballineen Foróige Club have organised an exhibition which will showcase a diverse and exciting range of engineering projects that have been undertaken by members of the club over the last few weeks, with the aid of leaders and a number of local engineers.

With the aid of local pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly, along with the support of STEAM Education, a UCC based company focused on promoting science, technology, engineering, arts, and maths subjects in primary schools, Ballineen Foróige has been engaging members and leaders in all things engineering over the last six weeks. From researching, designing, and prototyping a project based on local problems, to participating in various workshops on coding and careers in engineering, Ballineen Foróige have been extremely busy in preparation for the exhibition this coming Friday night.

On the night itself, Michael Loftus, Head of Engineering at CIT, Fintan Goold, Manager at Eli Lilly and All-Ireland Cork winning Footballer, along with Geraldine Coughlan of GCA Architects & Designers, a local business, will act as judges on the night, evaluating the different engineering projects and offering some advice to the members of the club. Also in attendance will be the CEO of Foróige Seán Campbell, along with a number of local councillors, TD’s and Senators.

Leading the team of Ballineen Foróige leaders organising the event, is Rebecca Dwyer, a bioprocess engineer at Eli Lilly. Rebecca recently became a leader in the club and says that Ballineen Foróige Young Engineer Exhibition 2018 “promises to be a fun, challenging and rewarding experience for all involved and we look forward to welcoming parents, relatives, friends and members of the public to the exhibition and film screening on the evening of Friday 23rd February.” Overall, there are twelve projects entered in the exhibition. One project, led by Cian Kennefick and Charlie Nolan, members of the starting out club, examines the possibility of installing speed ramps on the road near local primary school. Fourteen-year-old Charlie says he got involved in the project as it was something to do and it gets you thinking. Cian says the most exciting part of the project was the building of the prototypes.

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