The Time has come to eradicate the stigma surrounding infertility - Fakih Fertility Center
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  • The Time has come to eradicate the stigma surrounding infertility

    Monday, June 26, 2023

    Infertility is a condition seen in couples who are unable to conceive even after trying without using any birth control measures.
    There’s a cloak of shame that surrounds infertility. Couples going through the treatment journey can feel stigmatised because of their infertility, that it is still a taboo subject, which makes them feel somehow they have failed.
    The major brunt and stigma of infertility is borne by women, no matter who is facing fertility issues. Infertility in women is associated with high depression rates and other mental health issues, and many highlight social stigma as a key contributor to feelings of “anxiety, depression and low self-esteem”. 

    Either male or female or both the partners are responsible for infertility and one cannot blame either of them for this condition. In most of the cases, the women called barren whereas, the male partner does not even go for check up. It is recommended that both the partners should openly discuss and understand the problem.
    Initially, it is suggested that you must consult the infertility specialist and get yourself diagnosed to know the root cause of the condition. Early diagnosis helps in the early treatment and can reduce the emotional trauma of the couple to a maximum extent.
    If you’re not getting pregnant or you’ve struggled with repeated miscarriages, you are not alone. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 12% of women have trouble getting or staying pregnant. Also, keep in mind that 33% of infertility cases involve problems with a man’s sperm. So if you are talking to an OB-GYN about infertility, your partner may also want to see a urologist.

    Reasons Infertility Awareness Matters
    1- Not Everyone Knows What Infertility Really Is: Most people have heard about infertility, but how many know what that word actually means? Sure, they know that it means someone is struggling to conceive and carry a child. But infertility is not a catch-all term to describe general difficulty getting pregnant. Certain factors are involved in an infertility diagnosis. 
    2- It’s More Common than People Think: Not everyone realizes that infertility is a common problem. That may be because it’s not something many people feel comfortable talking about. Most people probably know quite a few couples who are struggling with fertility, but they don’t know it because it’s not talked about. 
    3- Anyone Can Face Challenges When Starting a Family: Infertility does not discriminate. People of all ethnicities can struggle with fertility problems. Nobody is immune. Infertility can be primary or  secondary.
    Fertility awareness efforts open people’s eyes to that fact and enable them to realize that they or someone they are close to could face that struggle. Personalizing something is a good way to get people on board to help with causes and be more understanding of other people’s struggles.  
    4- Infertility Awareness Can Remove Stigmas and Barriers: The more people there are that know the facts about infertility, the better it is for everyone. Infertility awareness is a critical part of normalizing conversation about fertility problems. That’s the first step in erasing stigma. Increasing awareness will also increase empathy and sympathy towards those dealing with such a personal problem. Opening up honest yet sensitive conversations will benefit everyone.

    There are some known strategies to start the conversation about infertility on your terms:

    Respect your boundaries: Agree on what to keep close and when to reach out. You may feel comfortable expressing your worries and thoughts, but not as willing to reveal the results of fertility tests.

    Get educated: When it comes to infertility, knowledge is power. If you are in your late 20s or early 30s, you should sit down and make a list of what you want out of life. If children are at the top of that list and you don’t yet have them, then you need to make conception a priority.

    Educate those who may not know what fertility treatment entails: Be patient and willing to teach the people that walk alongside you in this journey. We often find that the more people learn about infertility and fertility treatments, the more open the conversation can become.

    Talk to yourself: Give yourself a pep-talk because what we say to ourselves is powerful. If others remind you that there’s always a way to build a family, it usually has little or no effect. But if you remind yourself that there’s always a way, your mood will usually lift.

    Ask for support: Your community may not know how to help you. They love you and it can be difficult for them to see you suffering. You may need to teach them how to deal with the emotional side of fertility treatment. Explain that you’re going through a lot and need someone to listen and help you process. Infertility and other fertility issues are no more major issues these days. The assisted reproductive technology and infertility treatments have changed the scenario completely by making sure that people do not need to be childless for the rest of their life.