Navigating infertility and child loss can put your marriage at risk if you are not taking action to protect it. 


While many couples dream of building or growing their family, the path to parenthood is not always smooth. Infertility and child loss are devastating. All at once, the experience affects each of The 6 Pillars of Intimacy®: emotional, physical, financial, spiritual, recreational, and sexual. 

When you experience infertility, miscarriage, stillbirth, or infant loss, your marriage will face intense challenges. Grief and disappointment can either drive a wedge between you and your spouse or bring you closer than ever before. 

How Infertility or Child Loss Affects Your 6 Pillars of Intimacy®

No two couples experience the same journey through infertility or child loss. However, there are common themes that may arise throughout your journey. With an awareness of how infertility and child loss may affect your 6 Pillars of Intimacy® you can feel more prepared for the challenges you face.

Emotional intimacy takes a toll as conversations center on your desire for a child. Your conversations may feel heavy and bring out raw emotions from both of you. The weight of grief and frustration can make it difficult to connect on a deep emotional level.

You may forget the importance of physical intimacy as you reserve physical touch for sex. Or the strain of infertility or child loss may make it challenging to share loving, non-sexual touches like holding hands.

Financially, the costs associated with medical appointments, procedures, and medications can cause cracks to form in this pillar. The two of you may disagree about how much financial investment to make. 

Infertility and child loss can shake your spiritual intimacy. You may feel abandoned by God or assume He doesn’t hear your prayers for your future child. As a couple, this spiritual strain can create disconnection and isolation.

Recreational intimacy can also suffer. The costs related to conception or loss may limit the activities you can do together. Additionally, a lack of light-hearted conversations can make it difficult to create fun new memories together.

Finally, sexual intimacy can become a chore when the sole focus is conception. The pressure to have sex at certain times and the disappointment if those attempts are unsuccessful can drain the joy and intimacy from your sexual encounters.

7 Strategies for Strengthening Your Marriage Amid Infertility and Child Loss

If you are on this journey, there are seven ways you can actively prioritize your marriage. 

1. Focus on Communication

Infertility can be a deeply frustrating and isolating experience for a couple. The inability to conceive naturally or the recurrent loss of pregnancies can lead to feelings of guilt, shame, and grief. These emotions can strain your intimacy and lead to misunderstandings and conflict

Communication is your most important tool. There’s a reason emotional intimacy is the workhorse of The 6 Pillars of Intimacy®

When you can communicate your thoughts and emotions, even amid a painful experience, you can grow closer together. As a result, there’s less room for negative interpretations or unnecessary conflict. 

When your emotional intimacy is strong, you can talk openly and honestly about even the hardest things. 

2. Embrace Spontaneity 

As you walk through infertility or child loss, it may feel like every moment becomes scheduled. Your life revolves around doctor’s appointments, medications, and calendars. You’re focused on timing and cycles and body temperature and ovulation.

For the sake of your mental and emotional health, it’s important to take time to be spontaneous.

For example, take a last-minute weekend getaway or try a new sex position just for fun. Make out in the car or take yourselves to a nice dinner. Do things you used to enjoy back before you knew what this journey would look like.

3. Build a Supportive Community 

While the road to becoming parents can feel isolating, you are not alone. Seek out a community of others who know this journey.

Talk with someone one-on-one or join a support group, whether virtual or in-person. Attend events to connect with new people and organizations that want to support you.

For example, our friends at Carrywell facilitate incredible support groups for individuals and couples. Although they are based in Birmingham, Alabama, they also offer nationwide virtual connections.

It’s crucial to cultivate relationships with others who can pray with you, give you space to vent, and relate to what you are going through.

And let’s be clear: both of you need a community of support. Whether you attend as a couple or individually, prioritize talking with others who know what you’re experiencing.

4. Keep Your Marriage at the Forefront 

Infertility and child loss can feel all-consuming. Over time, the goal of having a baby can become like an idol.

However, the two of you must keep your marriage the priority.

Consider how you approached marriage before encountering this challenge. Perhaps you enjoyed traveling or trying new restaurants. A favorite pastime may have been snuggling on the couch to watch a new movie or show.

It’s essential to look for ways to continue to grow your relationship while facing infertility or child loss. Ultimately, a strong marriage is the foundation for the family you want to build.

5. Pursue Fun 

Cracks can quickly develop in your recreational intimacy if you aren’t taking the time to have fun together. So designate dates as a place where you talk about something other than your conception journey. If needed, bring along a deck of conversation cards like 88 Great Conversation Starters or TableTopics.

Pick up some new board games (or sexy board games!) and spend time laughing, teasing, and enjoying each others company.

You deserve to have fun. And the two of you deserve to create new memories like you used to. So put time on the calendar to go do something fun. 

6. Recover Your Sexual Intimacy 

Your sexual intimacy can develop cracks when you view it as nothing more than intercourse.

While sex can create a baby, it should also be a joyful celebration of your relationship. However, if you take the intimacy out of it, sex can become a clinical and awkward task. You become disconnected because the act is no longer enjoyable.

As a result, it can weaken your intimacy across all six pillars.

If either of you feels like you are going through the motions when having sex, talk about it. Consider ways you can improve your romance, initiation, or foreplay.

In addition, cracks in other pillars can lead to issues in your sexual intimacy. So examine your emotional or recreational intimacy, for example, and address any disconnection.

7. Seek Grief Counseling 

Throughout this journey, you and your spouse may grieve in different ways.

Whether you are mourning the life you imagined or the precious lives you’ve lost, your emotions are valid. The pain of infertility and child loss is real. It’s important to process this trauma with a grief counselor.

Carrywell offers a grief grant program to help ease the financial burden for select couples.

Grief counselors can offer guidance, support, and validation as you begin your healing journey. They can help you find ways to heal individually and as a couple. Grief counseling also provides a safe space to express your feelings and discover valuable coping strategies.

Connect with Carrywell

Carrywell started with support groups for women and has grown to offer many resources, including financial assistance for fertility treatments through their Fertility Grant Program, one-on-one connections, a network of health and wellness professionals, and much more. They are a source of encouragement and comfort for many couples throughout the nation. You can learn more about Carrywell by visiting their website.

Watch the video below to rekindle the spark and restore the connection in your marriage today!

In the 6 Pillars of Intimacy®, you will discover secrets that have transformed countless marriages. Its ideas are simple, practical, and powerful. You’ll be inspired to look at your marriage through a new lens and be encouraged by its commonsense approach.

Alisa and Tony DiLorenzo's proven approach to building intimacy in marriage will help you experience deeper and richer levels of intimacy with your spouse – starting today. Click HERE to get your copy today!

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