Do You Want To Know A Secret?
Infertility does not discriminate based on sex, race, religion, age, or financial status. Everyone from friends, neighbors, coworkers, and celebrities have been touched by infertility, whether they have chosen to go public or not.
April 21-27 is National Infertility Awareness Week. This is a great time to uncover the truth about infertility and get real about providing people with the access and support they need to pursue their fertility treatment options as well as cope with the emotional and psychological effects of infertility.
As we’ve said before in this space, conversations about infertility tend to veer toward stereotypes about who is affected by fertility issues. The assumption is that this is primarily an issue for “older” women. The truth is that, while older women do statistically have a harder time getting and staying pregnant, there are many other factors that contribute to 1 in 8 couples struggling with infertility.
Celebrities, politicians and others in the public eye are not immune from infertility, regardless of their status, wealth, or access to world-class medical care. In her recently released book, former First Lady Michelle Obama opened up about her struggle with infertility, including the miscarriages she suffered before giving birth to her daughters via in vitro fertilization (IVF). Celebrities such as Chrissy Teigen have gone public with their own fertility struggles in an effort to let others know they are not alone.
Raising Infertility Awareness
You don’t have to be a political figure or celebrity to raise awareness of infertility. Arming yourself with information about infertility is a good start and will allow you to speak to your friends and family about the issue. We’ve already mentioned the sobering statistic that 1 in 8 couples will struggle to conceive.
There are also more young women than ever before pursuing options such as egg freezing in an attempt to extend their fertility window while they start a family or as a hedge against medical issues. One of our doctors joined WCCO radio last yearto increase awareness of egg freezing among women in the Twin Cities.
All It Takes Is You to Provide Support
The support you provide friends, family member and colleagues can go a long way. A few kind words, a shoulder to cry on, and a listening ear can make all the difference for someone who feels extremely alone on their fertility journey.