Infertility: Not for Women Only

Dear Mr. Dad: My wife and I have been trying to have a baby for two years. Both of us have undergone lots of testing but the doctors still don’t know what the problem is. Throughout all of this, dozens of people—mostly friends and family, but also doctors, nurses, lab techs, and others—have come up to me and either offered some kind of advice, asked how my wife is doing, or told me what I need to do to support her. This whole process has been extremely stressful, and both my wife and I are emotionally devastated, but not a single person has asked how I’m doing. I’m getting really angry about being ignored and I’m trying to keep from biting someone’s head off. How should I respond?
A: Just a few decades ago, infertility was considered to be the woman’s “fault.” But today, experts know that it’s more evenly split. About 40% of the time, the cause can be traced to the woman; 40% of the time it’s traced to the man; and the remaining 20% is “unexplained.” Still, because the pregnancy would happen inside the woman’s body, society assumes that women are the only ones affected by infertility. The fact that men experience stress or grief or might be “emotionally devastated” by the shattering of their hopes and dreams rarely occurs to anyone.
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Bringing in Finn


Sara Connell, author of Bringing in Finn.
Topic:
An extraordinary surrogacy story.
Issues: One woman’s story of the tragedy and heartbreak of infertility and losing pregnancies, and the process of opening her heart and mind to the idea of her 60-year old mother carrying her child for her.

Supercommuters + An Extraordinary Story of Surrogacy


Megan Bearce, author of Super Commuter Couples.
Topic:
Staying together when a job keeps you apart.
Issues: The super commuting phenomenon; who are supper commuters? coping with suspicions of infidelity; six steps to make super commuting work; three characteristics of a successful super commuting relationship.


Sara Connell, author of Bringing in Finn.
Topic:
An extraordinary surrogacy story.
Issues: One woman’s story of the tragedy and heartbreak of infertility and losing pregnancies, and the process of opening her heart and mind to the idea of her 60-year old mother carrying her child for her.

Imagine a World Without Male Infertility

Forgive me for dreaming, but it’s the New Year and a great time to think about what the future holds, if only for a moment. Maybe you have a vision for what you’d like to see happen, whether political, financial, personal or global. Here is a deeply felt professional vision that constantly inspires me. [Read more...]

Infertility as a Disease – Men’s Health 101

Name a disease that’s about half as common as diabetes, affects both sexes and is running rampant in developed countries? Obesity? Good try. How about infertility? Ah, but is infertility really a “disease” you ask? You thought it was something that happens to a minority of otherwise healthy people, right? Well guess again. What is Disease? Hate to get too […]

The Long Road from Graveyard Shift to Cradle

sleep deprived

Dear Mr. Dad: My wife and I have been trying to have a baby for the past year. Both of us have been thoroughly checked out and neither of us has any physical conditions that could be causing problems. The doctor says it’s “unexplained infertility,” which isn’t helpful at all. My wife usually works late afternoons or night shifts (she’s a nurse) and is always tired. Could that be contributing to our difficulty conceiving?
A: “Unexplained infertility” has to be one of the most frustrating things a couple can hear. All it means is that even after spending thousands on diagnoses and fertility treatments, you’re not any closer to having a baby than you were before. But in your case, your wife’s work schedule may provide a clue.
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