The point of this week is to make the subject of infertility less taboo. People struggling through infertility often do so in silence, and we need to change that. It's a lonely disease that takes a toll physically, emotionally, financially, and even spiritually.
Let's get a grasp on the basics first.
What is infertility?
Most of the people in my life who have never dealt with fertility issues directly believe a myth about infertility, which is that infertility means you are barren or unable to ever have children.
The fact is that infertility is defined as the inability to conceive naturally after one year of trying to conceive (TTC). Or after six months if you're over the age of 40.
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Since people suffer from infertility in silence (for the most part), we may not realize how common this is. According to the CDC, "About 6% of married women 15-44 years of age in the United States are unable to get pregnant after one year of unprotected sex (infertility)." But the problem isn't only for the married, the CDC says. "Also, about 12% of women 15-44 years of age in the United States have difficulty getting pregnant or carrying a pregnancy to term regardless of marital status."
Men can have infertility issues too. In a 2002 study, the CDC found that, "7.5% of all sexually experienced men younger than age 45 reported seeing a fertility doctor during their lifetime...18% [of which] were diagnosed with a male-related infertility problem."
Before you assume the 12% of women and 18% of men need to relax and stop trying in order to conceive, you should know there are many physical causes of infertility. Tomorrow's post will focus on causes of infertility since the list is long.
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To those of us going through this storm, if nothing else does, these numbers reflect we're not alone. Our struggles are acknowledged.
Let's break the taboo and create a better world of support.
Thank you for reading and caring! If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave a comment on the blog post, find me on Twitter @Je55ieMullin5, on Facebook (here), or via email at jessie(dot)mullins5(at)gmail(dot)com.