Individual & Group Support
What does a Reproductive Support Specialist offer?
The family building process is an extremely personal and imaginative journey. We are here for the hard moments, the joyful ones, and everything in-between.
Maybe you’re at the beginning and wanting to discuss options or what initial steps to take. Maybe you are already working with an RE/fertility doctor/nurse practitioner, but wanting support between your appointments. We leave the medical support up to your care providers and focus on offering emotional, mental, and informational support along the way.
Maybe you want to do a home IUI with a midwife, but aren’t quite sure when to have them come? Never used OPKs (ovulation predictor kits) before? We are there to assist you. Want to get more connected to your body and learn about signs of ovulation? Looking for nourishing foods to add into your daily life to support reproductive health? Need help finding evidenced based research on a specific topic or you what to know what to expect for an upcoming appointment? We are here for all of that and more.
We are there for the questions (as off the wall as you may think they are, I promise you, they don't seem that way to us) to help you find information and resources to help you make decisions that are best for your body and your family. We are there to bounce ideas of, to be a listening ear, and offer the additional support many folx are searching for during their personal, family building journey.
Support includes (but not limited to) any of the following:
informational support (DIY/ICI/IUI/IVF/RIVF)
cycle tracking/charting assistance
connecting with providers (RE, Midwife, Fertility Specialists, Acupuncturist etc.)
preparation for or accompaniment to clinic appointments (virtual or in-person)
home care (after egg retrieval, embryo transfer, miscarriage etc., includes light house work and nutritional support)
educational, physical, and emotional support
text and email support
prenatal support through first 12 weeks
Support During the Follicular Stage (weeks leading up to ovulation):
We offer individual, person-centered care for anyone trying to conceive. Whether you are just starting out or deep into the process, we are here for you.
If you want to discuss the many options as you navigate your way, we can help you with cycle tracking, how to chart, timing, choosing providers, finding donors, fertility resources that cover topics such as nutrition, acupuncture, insemination options, and much more.
We offer treatment sessions to support overall hormonal balance and circulation. This relaxation massage may help with psychological stress since there is evidence that massage therapy (in general) supports this. This is not a specific type of fertility massage like Mayan abdominal massage (Arvigo technique) that's primary focus is to increase blood flow to the pelvic organs. We are happy to provide resources and referrals for practitioners who offer this type of treatment.
As a fertility support specialist, we may guide you through some gentle, self care abdominal work that you might like to add into your cycle routine, but this massage session, most importantly focuses on your relaxation and releasing tension that may build during stressful times. We also teach techniques that your partner(s) or support people in your life can do for you daily.
Support During the Luteal Phase (weeks after ovulation):
The second half of the cycle, after ovulation, may be filled with mixed emotions if you are actively trying. This stage might feel like a combination of anticipation and anxiety. The days may seem a little longer and it may be hard to focus. We are here to support the ups and downs. This could be virtual check-in where we discuss whatever is on your mind or concerns that may arise. We can go for a walk in the park, or offer a virtual, guided meditation. We are always there for text and email support. Looking for a yummy soup recipe? We have lots of those too.
We are here if you want to talk and if you don't feel like it, we totally get that too. We let you guide how much support you need. We know many people aren't necessarily sharing this stage of the journey with family, friends, co-workers, so professional support helps to fill this gap and oftentimes, feels similar to a friendship (we promise, absolutely no comparisons, judgements, or unwanted advice). We're here to listen and hold space for you if you're having a hard day. Sounds simple. This work is so needed because this type of support is often hard to find. Loved ones (well meaning) often want to fix or find a solution, hate to see us sad, and sometimes, they just don't know what to say so they try and fill the silence.
We actually promise to not have the answers. If you're hiring us, we will be upfront about that from the beginning. We honor that this is a deeply personal journey. We want your whole self, all of your identities, all of your past losses, floods, and experiences, to feel seen, heard, and cared for through the process. That's our main goal. If you learn some cool, useful tips and tools along the way, we're here for that too.
We teach a virtual partners class for those who would like to learn some tools and techniques to offer physical and emotional support such as: fertility acupressure points, massage, visualization, and breathwork techniques and more!
We also offer in-person treatments sessions during this stage (different than the follicular stage). This treatment promotes stillness, comfort and balance in the body as well as stress relief during the two week wait or during the the initials days after a transfer. This blend of Reiki, massage, and acupressure, is a gentle but powerful way to support hormonal and emotional health.
SD Family Wellness created their Creating Kin Program in hopes of expanding more accessible, inclusive, and affirming family building and parenting support options and resources for the LGBTQIA+ community.
The number of LGBTQ+-headed families in the United States is set to grow dramatically in coming years. The Family Equality Council did a recent, 2019 survey that showed 3.8 million LGBTQ+ millennials are considering expanding their families and 2.9 are actively trying to do so. Gaps in both parenthood rates and plans to become parents between LGBTQ+ and non LGBTQ+ people are narrowing. More LGBTQ+ families will be formed through assisted reproductive technology, adoption and foster care. Inclusive providers are an important piece to our parenthood journey and we need to know where they are and what they offer. It's also important for providers to know one another so they can refer their patients and clients to other inclusive care providers.
In partnership with the Families Program at The San Diego LGBT Community Center, we offer a FREE monthly support groups for queer, trans, nonbinary, and gender expansive folx who are navigating family building and parenthood.
4th Monday Resource Group: focuses on education, information, resources and community building. We invite inclusive providers in as guest speakers to share information and answer questions.
We also discuss topics that apply to all paths to parenthood and all parts of the parenting journey and encourage attending groups whether topics relate to your specific path or not to foster learning, and peer support.
4th Monday of every month (begins again April 2021!)
FREE | 5:30-630pm (PST) Virtual!
Topics and Guest Speakers change monthly
Ashley is an educator, reproductive and perinatal support specialist who has been working in the fertility, pregnancy, birth, postpartum and parenting world for over 8 years.
Kristen is a licensed marriage and family therapist and is also very passionate about supporting people on their path to parenthood.
Their personal journeys have been different but one thing was very similar, their need for more support and resources from the very beginning and each step of their process. Searching the internet far too often felt overwhelming.
We hope to connect you with amazing resources and inclusive providers to support your journeys and hopefully make some lasting friendships along the way.
Inclusive Provider Network
Our Inclusive Provider Network (IPN) offers annual training/networking events/resource fairs, an online directory and hosts community building/fundraising events to advance visibility and build family building scholarship programs.
Provider Networking Events:
Our provider networking events are held every other month on the 2nd Wednesday (starting back up, virtual in April 2021). This is a fun way to meet and connect with other providers and the best way to become one of our speakers at our 4th Monday support group! Please reach out to learn more.
LGBTQ+ Provider Networking Event
Hosted By Creating Kin at
SD Family Wellness Center