Fertility Network UK
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Gave up work

Hi - has anyone given up work when TTC? I gave up work a few months ago for a lot of reasons - I had a relentless, long commute so I was knackered all the time; we were always understaffed so had to do long/unpaid hours; I was stressed about how it would work when we eventually managed to conceive/have a baby - so I left! It did take a few months to make to decision so was not impulsive. I am trying to find a PT job now as we are going through IVF but finding it hard. Anyone else been through this? I don't regret leaving my job, but now I'm at home trying to fill my days and trying to think of something else other than TTC!!!

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Have a look at these jobs you can do from home. My friend works for airbonne (not sure that's spelt right) she does most of her work from home during call conferences etc, its market networking and you can do as little or as much as you want obviously that reflects what you earn xxx

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Thanks - I'll have a look :) xx

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Do you mean Arbonne, the vegan makeup brand?


Yes that's it x


Hi Lilli79. I gave up work for our 2nd ICSI cycle; I'm a teacher in a special school and it was just too stressful.

I've beeb going to the gym and catching up on my reading, but I know what you mean about struggling to fill the days. It's tough, isn't it? Xx

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Definitely! I had a bit of savings so I am trying to set up my own business from home, but its not easy to start from scratch. I'd love a part time job so I can fill a few more days & not have to worry about money but the treatment for IVF expects that you drop everything in a second to attend appointments etc. I left work in the understanding that we would be doing ICSI sometime around March/April (so our first consultant told us) but then we were referred and the new consultant said we have to do 4-5 months of IUI before we try ICSI. I was so stressed last week after our appointment I just spent about 3 days crying!! Made me re-think if I'm really the type of person who can spend all day every day at home xx


It is tough helsroo, not all it's cracked up to be! Xx


Hi Lilli

I was working whilst we were trying to conceive naturally but then when we were referred for IVF I took redundancy when they were being made. I worked in child protection so as you can probably imagine it was very stressful/a lot of responsibility and to be honest I was done with it really anyway after many years, even without the emotional impact of going through IVF whilst working with parents who were neglecting/abusing the children they were very lucky to have.

It wasn't a easy or rash decision me either, I've always been proud of my career and being 'just a wife' (as I couldn't help seeing it) really scared me but I kinda took the redundancies as a sign that I was meant to slow down, take some time and put myself and our dreams for a family first. I'm now 39 so it felt like now or never really.

My husband was and is so supportive and I'm fully aware that I'm so lucky that he can support me but I'd be lying if I said it's always been easy! I struggled feeling bored, unfulfilled, useless, lazy..you name it! Not to mention only thinking about fertility like you say 😳 Then I started volunteering and that's been a godsend, I'm busy, learning new things, my mind is occupied on stuff other than ttc..it's not for everyone but like you say pt jobs aren't always easy to come by and I wanted to be busy as well as keeping my CV active for future career prospects.

It can be really hard so I know exactly how you're feeling, I don't regret leaving my job either but I also didn't think it would be as hard as it has been some days either. I used a really good website called doit.org for the volunteering if you were interested and please don't hesitate to dm me if you're ever fed up and want to offload!

Lots of luck on your journey xx


Thanks Georgina, I'm the same - I worked really hard to get where I was and I just felt the mega stress was never going to go away, and am not sure my company really were the type who would support me through IVF. We have a history of fertility problems in my family so I just thought that the stress/travelling was hindering our attempts. There were loads of redundancies around the time I left and it just made me think hard about whether or not the well paid job is really worth it when you could be dropped in a second. I also volunteer and I'd be lost without it really, both physically and mentally. I think if I can't get a PT job I may do a voluntary intern stint or something just to boost my CV. Good luck with TTC, I'm getting serious fertility envy with all my pregnant friends - just wish it would happen soon! xxx


Glad you're already volunteering Hun, it really helps doesn't it. Wishing you loads of luck, it's so hard to deal with others pregnancy announcements and seeing the babies, hope it happens soon for you too xxx


I was so interested in your message as I also work in child protection and find it so difficult when ttc hearing of all these children who lack the support and love I am so willing to give to my own child. I would love to leave my job as I can't help but wonder that stress is what landed me here however financially it is not an option so I got a Dr's line for my 2nd cycle which is definitely helping. Xx

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Hi vic it's really challenging to be in that kind of role facing infertility isn't it, really glad to hear your doctor has been sympathetic and you've got some breathing space for your next cycle. I don't regret leaving that job but I must admit I do miss the 'never a dull moment' aspect and I don't think I realised how much of my identity was tied up in what I did.

Wishing you so much luck for your next cycle and hopefully 2017 will be our year xx


I haven't given up work but am finding coping with work and this whole TTC so time consuming.

I have quite a stressful job, my work does not know about my struggle which makes it worse.

Luckily I have some flexi time in terms of not office based all the time so have been able to make up some excuses as I go along, but it's stressful.

I had a BFN a few weeks ago and have to go through another journey which I hope is soon.

In some ways it's stressful but I do find that work has made me think of something else as when I'm at home I just don't think of anything else... so sometimes am grateful for it.

I need to see how it goes for the next cycle and hope I can cope with both again.

I am also not really booking any major holidays in case I need them, but there's got to be a cut off at some point as not the best way to live!

If you can afford to not work or get something part time, it sounds like a good idea. It's not an option for me right now....

Good luck 🍀


I did this. We decided we wanted to have a baby and I was in a really stressful job. Although I don't regret leaving, we were really niave and assumed it would happen right away...1.5 years on I now work part time but about to go back to full time....I couldn't handle the boredom and needed a distraction of work again...

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I am not sure that this advice is for everyone but I also gave up work some time ago

just because I could not keep up with everything. I was plainly going crazy and I knew that that created not so healthy atmosphere in the office.. and as far as I know stress is very bad for your own fertility.

I had also surgeries and other stuff it wasn't very pleasant to always think that you have to go to work rather than have a proper rest.

and now my husband works a lot but I am staying at home, yes, even now. Preparing all the necessary stuff for our future kids. and also I know that in a short time I will be going abroad and staying with our newborns for some time till their documents are ready. so it will be another obstacle for me in terms of work.


Hi Lilli,

I remained in full - time work during my last cycle but I took a/L for embie transfer and went on the sick during the tww as I was bleeding and in a state of hysterics. I felt so stressed in work and guilt stressed about being off last time.

This time I was majorly stressed about pending ivf as where last time my line manager would say "you go to your appointments, I'll deal with xyz", this time I was taking on her role as well as my own as she and several other staff members had left so I had no buffer. I'd found myself dealing with crisis situations and having to cancel and pay for missed accupuncture sessions pre ivf as I just couldn't leave work. The thought of that happening when I had crucial ivf appointments set me in a state of panic.

Everyone was telling me to slow down and take it easy but in the end I was forced to stop as I got quincy and was hospitalised. I think I was running on empty as I picked up a few other lergs and was exhausted for weeks. That was in January which forced me to take sick leave and I've been on the sick since.

Being off work forced me to realise that I couldn't cope with my stressful job in domestic abuse support alongside ivf and other major stresses we have going on. My doctor believes I got ill due to burn out with all of this and my body told me to stop. She also said that she believes no one should be in work during the ordeal of ivf which I fully agree with depending on the job.

I know my job at the front line of crisis and child - protection issues was difficult for me to cope with alongside work so I don't blame you for stepping away.

Good luck with your journey hun xx


Hey, I've ended up not working via redundancy but can honestly say I truly think I needed not to be in my job. I too was in a stressful job and I don't think I realised I was so tense all the time. I've filled the last six weeks completing a fitness transformation to make sure I'm in good shape physically as well as mentally for next cycle- hopefully starting middle March. After our 2nd miscarriage last year I stopped taking care of myself and was so unhealthy and unfit. We've just agreed sale on our house so will be moving hopefully after cycle is finished and I too will be looking for something to do. It's all so strange not getting up and going into the office. I hope you find something soon. X


I'm a teacher and went part time a year ago and also gave up all my senior leadership responsibility. I did this to try to help me conceive and I can totally empathize with you and Georgina. It's really hard not to think about TTC all the time when that's the reason you are not at work. It has taken me a long time to try to stop justifying it to everyone too... I felt like only people who had children had the right to go part time! Which is ridiculous, as I can afford it so why not?

I did one of those request for part-time working forms and luckily my employers were sympathetic to my reasons so I was able to stay working at the same place.

In the end it has definitely been worth it as my stress levels have reduced and I have time to go to appointments etc.

I now fill my two days off with appointments (including fertility related ones like acupuncture but also nice ones like regular hair colouring), catch ups with friends (lots of my friends have kids at school but are part time so are happy to meet on their days off), a bit of volunteering, cooking (I've got really into cooking from scratch as I think it will help make my body more baby friendly), exercise, and doing household things including gardening, which is good for my soul! I also find that the supermarket shop, which I used to do late at night after work, can now easily fill half a day as I go bargain hunting (sad I know!).

My mum is enjoying seeing more of me too.

I'm lucky that my husband is super supportive and hasn't expected me to pick up all the chores just because I'm part time. He regularly says to me,"your job is to relax." I have picked up a few things though, but through choice, because I have time.

I'm started to feel like those retired people who never have a spare moment! But it's nice things, not so much stress.

The point of my long message really is to say it does get easier, I don't think about ttc all the time any more and my leisure activities have expanded to fill my spare time.

Best of luck with finding a part time job if that's what will suit you best xx

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