Transforming stories about human efforts to successfully conceive and nurture a pregnancy…

Invitation

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Helping us put our emotions about gestating something new into words.

The change we need will spring from our moral imagination, defined as

‘the capacity to imagine something rooted in the challenges of the real world yet capable of giving birth to that which does not yet exist.’

John Paul Lederach

in Barry Knight’s

FACING THE SHADOW WITHIN OURSELVES TO #BUILDBACKBETTER

How can I help?

We are inviting women and men to create a piece of prose or poetry or image reflecting on their own experiences, or those of someone close to them, of: wondering about whether to have a child; the decision to try or not to try; the process of trying to conceive; finding out about a confirmed pregnancy; finding out that conception has not taken place; loss and divergence from a hoped for path; changing emotions during pregnancy; birth and the early weeks of meeting the baby (if this was part of the experience). It doesn’t matter how recent or ancient your story, or if you are a mum, dad, relative or friend, or had a positive or negative or mixed experience. We would love to hear from you!

I want to help but I don’t feel able to contribute a story?

If for any reason you don’t wish to, or feel able to share a story, your support is still enormously valuable. Please follow us on social media and look out for the next stage: output about a shift towards a new era, with all our hopes and expectations of fair and sustainable values. Whatever your relationship to parenthood this is something we strongly suspect will resonate with you. If you feel able to like and share our posts then you will have amplified and nurtured this shift!

What will happen to my story?

XR Psychologists would like to transpose an extract from your story, paragraph or piece so that it retains the essence of the original but reads as though it is a new era with new or recovered values that is being gestated and eventually born. Whole stories, extracts, woven stories, quotations, poems, will then be presented back to the world throughout the series of social media posts (video, text, images). It may be that you would wish to reclaim the story and read it to camera or even at an event! It could be that a theatre company enacts some of the stories. Our plan is for the four trimester stories to be shared predominantly throughout 2021. We may continue to share stories where relevant beyond COP26 in November.
Whilst the exact use of the stories will emerge, we are fully committed to honouring the ownership of the original and will seek your permission for the finished version and the proposal for each piece of work. If you are not comfortable, you can withdraw your permission at any point.

Can I be anonymous/acknowledged?

Our intention is to acknowledge every contributor. However, we are more than happy to anonymise the contributions. We will ask you to state your preferred option at every stage and you can also change your mind at any point.
When do I need to submit it by?
We will welcome contributions at any time.
I would like to contribute but I don’t have time /confidence to write.
We can phone you and you can tell us and we will write it down and show it back to you?

How do I submit my story?

Please send it to projects@xrpsychologists.co.uk along with some contact details. Then we will be in touch. You can email us if you wish to request the prompt questions below in an email, with no obligation!

Can you offer any prompts to help me get started?

Think of a time when someone close to you or perhaps you yourself were going through the experience of wondering about whether to try to conceive or having a pregnancy initially confirmed.
It may help to bring to mind an object, photograph or place that you associate with this time, or with a particular moment.
Let yourself reflect on how you felt in that moment. How you felt as the situation progressed and your experiences over the months that followed, as you took in and adapted to the news. Perhaps the pregnancy continued to full term and you recall the impact on yourself of the baby’s birth. Perhaps there was loss. Think about how this impacted on you, sharing as much as you feel comfortable to do so: and whether you feel your story links at all to your hopes and fears for the future we face together now.

Prompt questions to use if helpful:

How long does it need to be?

As long as you like! Even a single sentence or paragraph will be welcomed.
Thank-you so much!

*A final note.

If reading this invitation has evoked strong, powerful emotions for you, and you feel you need it, we trust that you will seek out someone to support you, such as a trusted friend or confidante. We acknowledge that the topics of the Climate & Ecological Emergency and Pregnancy & Childbirth are both emotionally powerful and potentially enormously challenging, as well as full of potential, hope, and joy.

email your story to projects@xrpsychologists.co.uk