People take parenthood as much for granted as birth and death. You are born, you get an education, then a job, followed by marriage, parenthood and finally death. This is some kind of unwritten cosmic schedule that humans follow and no one really thinks about the progression of events as they live their lives. You just flow from one phase of life to another in a seamless fashion. For couples who discover that they cannot have children for whatever reason, the loss of parenthood, a basic ingredient of life, comes as a rude shock.
Most couples who are told that they are infertile find it difficult to accept this verdict. After all, people all over the world are having babies every minute. It’s the most natural thing in the world. The next thought that occurs to them is considering the rate at which medical technology is advancing, surely the problem can be fixed. This is true to a certain extent. Various infertility treatments have worked for many couples who were having difficulty conceiving a child. But there are still some couples that slip through the cracks. After spending huge amounts of money and following all the doctors’ instructions, some couples still fail to conceive a child.
These couples often slip into a deep depression. They think - "Why us?" They should realize that there is no point beating themselves up pointlessly about something that is beyond their control. They should try to resign themselves to the fact some things are just not meant to be. However, couples pass through many agonizing hours of self-doubt and despair before they reach this ideal state of acceptance.
The husband or the wife often feels guilty thinking that it is his or her fault that conception was not possible. Sometimes the man or woman’s own feelings of guilt drive them to ascribe these feelings to their partners. This is usually unwarranted as the thought may have never crossed their partners’ minds, nor have they acted in a manner indicating that they blamed the other person
Women who are infertile often feel that the fact that they cannot bear children makes them less of a woman or inadequate in some way. Unfortunately, this is a sentiment that is often supported in society. Being barren is not a stigma that a woman should have to bear like a cross for the rest of her life. There is much more to a woman than her ability to bear a child.
Similarly, if conception was not possible as a result of male infertility, the male partner may feel that it is a slur on his manhood. Men should remember that sterility does not automatically mean a loss of virility. Sterile men can still be extremely virile.
Childless couples should make every attempt to pull themselves out of the depths of despair. Speaking to other couples in a similar situation can be a source of great solace. These couples should try to find out about infertility support groups. They should learn to accept their childlessness as a fact of life and learn to deal with it positively. Adoption is an option that they may want to consider. If adoption is not a choice they would like to make, then they will have to find other ways to channel their love for children. Remember that parenthood is an experience that should not be missed out on if possible. But if you can’t be a parent, life does go on. There is a whole wide world out there with a new experience around every bend.
When most couples get married they expect to have their own babies. Many naively expect they will get pregnant the very first month they try - and are concerned when a pregnancy does not occur. All of us go through a brief interlude of doubt and concern when we do not achieve pregnancy the very first month we try - and we start wondering about our fertility.
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