Infertility: 6 challenges that a couple can face and how to cope up with it

A couple struggling with infertility has a difficult life! The difficulties of infertility can change your way of life. But here are 6 strategies to cope with them.

challenges with infertility
Infertility can cause several difficulties. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Diana Crasta Published on: 19 October 2022, 08:59 am IST
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Infertility is an emotional journey for every couple. This journey has many ups and downs, long waits, and so, it needs a positive mindset. In India, infertility is still seen and considered as a woman’s issue and therefore, it may affect her more than a man. Dealing with these overwhelming feelings of sadness and anxiety can be tough for both partners. Knowing the challenges that come with infertility and the practical steps you can take to ease the tension will help you cope with the issue better.

6 challenges of infertility

1. Instability in marriage

One of the most important and primary issues faced by a couple facing infertility is having a stable marriage. It is not easy for the couple to accept each other with issues of infertility. Comparison and blaming each other is the most common. Along with this, the couple also experience pressure from the family and relatives, which creates more stress.

2. Not willing to go for a treatment

As compared to women, men may deny undergoing certain medical investigations. The fertility consultant cannot treat the couple unless proper investigations are conducted. This may lead to tough conversations with your partner about your next steps. There can be disagreements on what kind of solution to find, or what kind of help to look for. If you have been trying to conceive for more than a year with little success, it is advisable to consult a specialist.

challenges with infertility
Get regular medical check ups. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

3. Lack of awareness

It is very natural for a couple to have confusion regarding the treatment. It is also true that due to a lack of awareness, they reach the fertility centres or experts very late. Couples usually desire to solve their infertility issues without knowing the scientific reason. For the same reason, they may not be able to start on deciding to visit the fertility expert to start the treatment advised.

4. Physical intimacy or sexual relationships issues

Couples experience stress and anxiety when they are unable to conceive naturally. This will affect their sexual relationships, and thus their overall marital life. Physical or sexual relationships will turn into a task rather than make it pleasurable.

5. Communication problems

In every relationship, it is important to have a space for good and healthy communication. Communication involves freedom to express, active listening, accepting each other and being non-judgmental. Creating a comfortable environment to communicate in, is essential. However, people going through fertility issues either don’t like to communicate or they are not heard when they are willing to communicate.

Also, read: Infertility: 6 lifestyle issues which can delay conceiving

6. Relationship with extended family members can be ruined

Infertility has been made out to be a social issue than biological, and the couple needs to be ready to face the family members as one. Situations like disharmony with in-laws, threats of abandonment, stigma, discrimination, and physical abuse are common factors even today in Indian households. Facing society and still staying strong is one of the most difficult situations for couples, especially women. Even though male infertility is a reality, women face many embarrassing questions from relatives related to infertility and about treatment.

challenges with infertility
Infertility can ruin family relations Image courtesy: Shutterstock

How to cope with challenges that come with infertility?

Every couple dealing with infertility has always been a victim of negative comments, emotional harassment, and pressure from family and society. Negative situations and the environment are nothing new to them. But facing them and living with a positive attitude is not as easy as it looks. Avoiding such situations may not be possible. But it can be managed with certain changes in mindset, a positive attitude, and by making certain changes in life.

Here are 6 tips to cope with the challenges that come with infertility:

1. Communicate

Communication is the first step towards any healthy relationship. Talking to the spouse and listening to each other without any bias or pre-judgmental attitude will help the couple to see things clearly. It is okay to have different opinions or perspectives. However, it is essential to have empathetic communication where you listen to and understand each other’s point of view.

2. Spending quality time

Everyone is busy and will get busy with work and career growth. Taking time for each other every day, even though it’s for a short time, can bring a lot of positive changes. Spending time doing things which both of you like, having at least one meal together, a day off from a busy schedule, planning for a short outing (if that is feasible) and finding small happiness with each other can make this fertility journey less stressful.

challenges with infertility
You can learn a lot from being in love! Image courtesy: Shutterstock

3. Support each other

You are not alone in this journey. Your partner is also going through similar and equal feelings as you. He/she may be finding it difficult to accept and deal with everything about infertility. Be it treatment, expectations from family, relatives, or his/her own feelings, which block her/him from many things. Being supportive and available can bring the emotional support they need to face reality.

4. Seek support

Infertility, for some people, can start affecting their day-to-day lives. People going through these situations need professional help, and it is okay to see a psychologist. Getting rid of the taboo on psychological counselling is an important part of our own growth. Mental health is more important than physical health, and emotionally strong people are in a better position to face anything. Timely help and support are the only remedies for an emotionally healthy life.

Also, read: Heard about fertility meditation yet? Well, it can help you get pregnant!

5. Plan it out

Disagreement, confusion, and misunderstanding are a part of any new thing we decide. These emotions and feelings are good, provided we plan a particle way of facing them. A practical solution to things and a willingness to discuss solutions can bring good results and balance to your marital life.

challenges with infertility
Go out and enjoy. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

6. Seek expert advice

Nothing is better than seeking expert advice. Most of the worries, confusions, and fears can get an answer just by visiting a fertility expert. The expert will examine and find out the best treatment options available. This also helps the couple to be ready physically and emotionally for the treatment.

The last word

According to a famous quote, “A good relationship is when someone accepts your past, supports your present, and encourages your future”. This is very apt for all kinds of relationships. People facing infertility need to have that “extra” for each other. Have trust in your relationship and believe that you can both deal with this tough but temporary challenge.

With time and the needed support, you can deal with these issues. There are several treatment options available that will help you with your partner. The most important thing you should care about is your relationship. Don’t let your partner go through this alone. Communicate and ease it a little for them.

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About the Author
Diana Crasta Diana Crasta

Diana Crasta, Chief Psychological Counsellor, Nova IVF Fertility

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