Women going through fertility treatments can feel alone and unsure of where to turn for support, says Katie O’Connor, a Chicago mom who struggled with infertility for two years before becoming pregnant with her daughter. So O’Connor recently decided to start a support group called Shine Chicago for women to support each other.
“There was a need, because it was like a void in this big city for women wanting to be pregnant, wanting to be moms,” O’Connor says. “The first few women that are part of it are reassuring me that this has been a great path to go down. Either they’re so new in the process that they’re overwhelmed, or their friends just looked at their husbands and got pregnant. It’s been fulfilling to me to help these women.”
The meetings take place about every three weeks at The Dailey Method in Chicago’s Bucktown neighborhood and are moderated by O’Connor. Most meetings are open forums to discuss anything they’d like, although at some meetings, guest speakers talk about issues relevant to women facing fertility problems.