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Mental Health Ireland
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Fertility issues IVF treatment

I thought this article was helpful for women considering IVF treatment, and to take an honest look at a woman's fertility health.  IVF is an invasive treatment and is tough on the mind, body and spirit of the woman undergoing the treatment and acupuncture can help relieve the stress, and help the woman’s body to function at its optimum.  IVF can also take its emotional and psychological toll on the men who are part of IVF process.  It can be hard for a man to see his partner endure the procedures, feeling helpless in something he cannot help or fix for his partner. 

There are unfortunately inevitable disappointments after a cycle of treatments, everyone hopes that the first time will be successful, but this is not always the case.  It can be disappointing and distressing to have both been through the treatments with no end result of a pregnancy.  For the woman it is her body that has taken a battering of injections, procedures, pain and then the hope that has been taken away.  For the man it can be hard as he is naturally the problem solver in a situation that is outside of his control, and in trying to protect his partner from suffering he ignores his own needs.

Despite the hardships endured and the financial costs, most couples do try again. Overtime sex can become less pleasurable, as the timings are crucial, sex can, if couples allow it, turn into a chore.  Sex can turn from something that was intimate and an expression of love to purely a baby making procedure.  The relationship can find itself under new strains that were not expected as feelings of guilt, shame, unworthiness, sorrow, loss, or resentment can surface. 

It is important that both parties get supported through and after the IVF treatments, it can be hard to be a support to each other when both of you are going through a difficult but different experience.  Men have a tendency to be strong, to be the rock for their partner after a loss experienced from an unsuccessful treatment, often putting their own feelings aside, feeling their partner’s pain and suppressing their own, not allowing themselves the time to come to terms with a loss from the unsuccessful outcome. 

Talking about your fears, disappointments, frustrations, pain and to acknowledge a loss with someone you trust can be the underlying rock that helps both of you to continue on with your dream when faced with a let-down or set back from the treatment.  As Lucy writes in her article, it is probably the hardest journey you will travel together but through a strong support network the two of you will survive the low points in preparation for the high points, a successful pregnancy.


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