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Infertility is a touchy subject. It's a real medical problem and it's not in your head. What other common myths are not true?

Infertility is the woman's fault

The primitive and patriarchal thought that fertility and infertility are a woman's business, and when it goes wrong a woman's fault, is very common. Are you, in any way, affected by this very persistent but wrong infertility myth? Know that both partners in a couple are equally likely to have a fertility problem 35 percent of all infertility diagnoses are attributed to the man, while the same 35 percent is due to female infertility. The rest of infertility cases are diagnosed because both partners have a fertility problem or because the cause of infertility is unknown even after testing. When you have been trying to conceive for a while, do not assume that you are infertile you and your partner would need to undergo fertility testing to find out what is going on.

Most couples get pregnant right away

Many couples start worrying about infertility after only a few months of attempting to get pregnant. The fact is that the average couple takes six months to conceive. Though 90 percent of couples do conceive within a year of actively trying, not all do. In order to get pregnant, you need to get your timing right and be lucky. You may "win the jackpot" during your first try, but it is just as likely that you will not. Ovulation-detecting techniques like an ovulation calendar, ovulation tests, or fertility charting may or may not help you along. Healthy living and regular intercourse certainly contribute to your chances of getting pregnant, though they will not help if you suffer from infertility (unfortunately no, that is not too obvious to point out to some people).

Relax, and it will happen

Every single couple who is struggling with infertility has heard this sentence. We did. Sometimes this thoughtless sentence is genuinely meant to be supportive, but it is always offensive. It just may be true that extreme stress can stop ovulation for a few months, but infertility is a medical problem. Nobody will tell you that your asthma will go away if you just relax, and the same thing goes for infertility. So, how does an infertile person deal with comments like this? My partner and I decided to keep our infertility pretty much to ourselves after we heard this comment once. From my mother in law. I wanted to beat her up, but learned to keep my mouth shut after that. A variety of this theme is people telling you about couples who adopted and than found out they were pregnant. This is even more insulting, because it insults the institution of adoption as well you, for being infertile. Hey, just remember that some people are stupid or ignorant. It is not their fault (at least not always), but that does not mean you have to put up with it.

You will get pregnant if you try harder

You will get pregnant if you have sex at the right time, use an ovulation calendar, use folic acid or... (worst of all) lose weight. The tale about losing weight getting you pregnant was recently debunked by research that showed overweight women who lost weight did not increase their chances of getting pregnant. People who are just getting into the journey of trying to conceive may think it is really exciting to share the fact that folic acid and ovulation tests exist. People with infertility have already been trying, and need medical help.

I should wait for two years before seeing a doctor

It used to be that the advice surrounding infertility testing was to wait for two years if you were under 35, and one year if you were older than that. Now, the official definition of infertility is trying to get pregnant for one year without success. You can see your family doctor for a chat and a referral after that. If you are over 40, you can see your doctor once you have been actively trying for six months. By the way, it always helps to bring a detailed report of your menstrual cycles, when you had intercourse, and when you ovulated to your doctor so they can see that you really have been trying. If you have been using ovulation tests for a while without ever getting a positive test, you could also see your doctor about that immediately for advice on what to do next.

  • Infographic by SteadyHealth.com
  • Infographic by SteadyHealth.com

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