Wednesday 24th March 2021 – 8pm (GMT)
I chatted with two experienced fertility counsellors, Gerry McCluskey and Angela Pericleous-Smith, all about one of the most common questions I get asked – how do I talk to friends and family about donor conception?
We explored the differences between privacy and secrecy, the different ways in which we can approach these conversations, language we might use, whilst exploring different scenarios, such as where older siblings / step children might be involved. We recognised that our parents may also hold some grief over the loss of genetics and how we can manage that without it impacting our own feelings. And we also talked about some of the unfortunate misconceptions that may be held and how we can handle those inquisitive, sometimes insensitive, but well-meaning comments.
Both Gerry and Angela have a vast amount of combined experience in counselling people around these issues and I too will be able to draw on my own experience and those I’ve heard of others too.
Working for Family Routes, a voluntary social work agency, Gerry McCluskey has a particular interest in the broad range of different ways in which families are formed, the issues of belonging, connection, identity, loss and fulfilment which relate to the pursuit of family life whatever its form.
Angela is Chair of the British Infertility Counselling Association (BICA) and has practised as a specialist fertility counsellor for almost 20 years. Angela offers support, therapeutic and implications counselling to couples and individuals exploring their fertility and considering assisted conception or fertility preservation.