How to Have a Healthy Relationship with Social Media when TTC

Eloise Edington  |   24 Dec 2021

We’ve all been there:

Deleted social media, loved the serenity, felt curious about what our friends are doing and downloaded it again.

Repeat six months later.

At Fertility Help Hub, we’re aware online content can be triggering.  Whether we see a news article about someone for whom contraception failed time and time again, when celebrities share stories of their miscarriage (such as Jessie J, recently) or if a well-meaning friend posts about her wonderful news she’s finally pregnant.

And it’s not only content in the world of fertility or parenting.  When everyone we follow seems to be getting engaged, we can’t help but feel a tiny bit jealous that they’ve found their person – or is it just me?

So how do we curate a social media feed to maintain our sanity?

Read on to find out FHH’s top tips for staying healthy on social media.

Words by Holly Pigache

1. What purpose does social media have in your life?

There’s really no right or wrong answer to this question.  Many of us will say social media allows us to keep up with friends’ lives and reconnect with lost connections.  Some of us might be members of groups or Instagram profiles (like the FHH IG) and use social platforms as a place to feel part of a collective and share experiences.  Few of us will admit social media is a great time-waster.

We all know it and we all do it; a few minutes to spare waiting for the bus?  Scroll through social media.  Popping to the loo whilst out with friends?  A quick scroll.  Finished the next chapter of our book?  What’s the latest Feed update since our previous chapter?

Spend a little time thinking about what purpose social media serves you.

Related article: Stronger Together: Fertility Community.

2.  Curate content that you want to see.

It’s okay to unfollow accounts and people if you feel sad/angry/overwhelmed when you see the content they post.  However, if you’re unfollowing a good friend, it might be an idea to let them know you’re doing so and the reasons for it, without making it a bigger deal than in needs to be.

3. Will putting social media boundaries in place help?

Depending on your self control, you might decide you can only check your social media feed during set times of the day (difficult if your job requires you to keep on top of the company’s social channels, I’ll admit).

You might decide to use one of the many apps or phone features that blocks access to social media platforms once you reach a daily limit.

A block on a daily limit is probably more effective as you may use your time on social media more carefully – we don’t want to be actually looking forward to our social media hours.

4. Remember social media isn’t the full picture.

Would you rather see a video of a friend’s adorable new puppy or read about how fed up they are in their job, how miserable their commute is and how they never seem to have any time for anything?

Me too.

Social media has a habit of being a “showing-off” platform.  Everyone has down days but we are social creatures who prefer the positive side of life over the negative.  Try not to compare yourself with your social media connections and take what you see on social media with a pinch of salt.

5. Practice what you preach.

Be mindful of what you post on social media.  If you’ve felt triggered online, be conscious your followers or friends may feel triggered by content you share.  It is absolutely okay to share good news online but perhaps add a note that you don’t wish to upset anyone and are happy to talk and listen if someone is upset by your content (although only say this if you actually are happy to talk and listen).

Related: Telling a friend who’s TTC you’re pregnant.

6. Don’t forget the “social” side.

Unless there’s good reason to get your phone out with friends (taking an important call, showing them something on your mobile or writing down a good idea they’ve had), keep your phone tucked away.

The friend or family member in front of you may feel hurt you chose to direct your attention towards your Instagram feed over them – Zuckerburg and co. won’t be upset.

Curating healthy social media habits is a good way to maintain your mental wellbeing whether you’re TTC, going through fertility treatment or just living life.

The negative impact of social media on our health is no longer news but we can modify our behaviour to stop social media getting the better of us.  So, this holiday season, enjoy time with loved ones.  By all means update your profile or see how your connections spend their Christmas, but don’t let that detract away from the festivities in front of you.

To connect with people going through similar experiences, download our free FHH app here.

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