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What a mom-daughter duo is doing to help people struggling with infertility
Pamela Hirsch watched her daughter, Nicole Lawson, endure fertility issues, and the two decided to do something to help others, according to The Huffington Post. Here's what their organization, Baby Quest, does. - photo by Payton Davis
A mom-daughter duo has helped welcome 16 babies into the world over a three-year span with an organization aimed at supporting people facing fertility issues.

At one point, the daughter, Nicole Lawson, struggled with infertility in the same way those she helps now do, Taylor Pittman wrote for The Huffington Post. Lawson endured four years of fertility treatments and three miscarriages.

"When you want a baby, it's the one thing you can't control, and that's what's so frustrating," Lawson said in a Today video.

Pamela Hirsch witnessed her daughter's hurdles, mentioning surrogacy, according to The Huffington Post. Lawson said she and her husband, Josh, didn't have the money for it, so Hirsch decided to help.

Lawson now has two girls, and The Huffington Post reported that experience inspired the duo to found Baby Quest "a nonprofit organization dedicated to giving financial assistance to those who can't afford procedures to help them become parents, including in vitro fertilization and gestational surrogacy."

The procedures prove costly, but becoming a parent shouldn't have a price, Lawson told Today, which is why Baby Quest alleviates the financial burden. Through the organization's grants and donations to facilitate necessary procedures, others can find the joy Lawson did, according to The Huffington Post.

"Money shouldn't stand in the way of someone having a child," Lawson said in Today's video. "That's what it comes down to."

Just seeing the reactions from people who have waited for parenthood is rewarding for Hirsch and Lawson. But having 16 babies and seven on the way born with Baby Quest's help stands out.

"To know that we've helped fulfill a dream of theirs has been truly rewarding," The Huffington Post quoted Hirsch as saying.

But what can people who have a friend or family member facing fertility issues do without large sums of money like Hirsch?

Juli Fraga wrote for The Washington Post that promising to listen and suggesting a fun activity can go a long way especially during the holidays.

"The holidays are a difficult time of year for women struggling to conceive," The Washington Post's piece read. "Surrounded by friends and family members, the joyful laugh of a child or cry of a baby may trigger feelings of sadness as they remind these women of the families they long for."

At Christmas parties, family members might offer words of encouragement like, "Don't give up" or "It's going to happen," according to The Washington Post. This optimism isn't always well-received, though.

The Post noted just lending a shoulder might prove more appropriate.

"Infertility strips away a womans joy, confidence, and hope as she sets forth on her parenting journey, which often leaves her feeling broken, vulnerable and emotionally tender," according to the Post. "Let your friend know that her emotions are welcome and that she doesnt have to seclude this part of herself as she struggles to conceive."

And if people do talk to their friends or family enduring infertility, my colleague Herb Scribner wrote on what not to say.

"Just relax," "You're lucky you don't have kids" and "You waited too long" all miss the mark, Scribner reported.

Even "there's always adoption" might seem sensible but that decision should be left to the infertile person, Scribner said.
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