Male Factor Infertility – A Candid Look Into Our Relationship

Post image for Male Factor Infertility – A Candid Look Into Our Relationship

by Elle on October 17, 2012

When you’re dealing with infertility, there isn’t one corner of your life that it touched. Infertility tests your relationshipintimacy, patience and hope. It touches upon your financial life, emotional stability and  stress levels. It even touches upon relationships with others – friends and family who are lucky enough to be parents.

Infertility has truly tried our relationship and guess what…

I’m not sure our relationship will survive it.

We started trying to conceive relatively early in our relationship (about 8 months into it). We were just that certain about our future together. We were planning to get married and buy a new house within months… then infertility reared it’s ugly head and everything changed.

I often wonder what would have happened had we been dealt with female infertility rather than male infertility. Perhaps we’d still be where we are today. Perhaps we wouldn’t.

Since the diagnosis, BF has been a different person and I can completely understand, I just wish there was a way I could get through to him.

Male Factor infertility and a sense of Manhood

Infertility has attacked his sense of manhood and I only understood the severity recently. This sense of not feeling like a man has infiltrated every aspect of our relationship and he has a constant sense of not feeling like he’s good enough. He feels as though he’s the ‘weak link’ despite my pleas to convince him otherwise.

He is just as much a man as he was before infertility.

These days, he can’t help interpreting anything I say as a message that he doesn’t make me happy or that he keeps coming up short. Whether I’m talking about groceries or spending more time together, the only thing he hears is that he’s failing.

We’re now at a point where speaking to each other can be tricky – I’m constantly anxious about what I say and how it may be interpreted and he’s constantly defensive.

‘My’ vs ‘Our’

Our biggest issue is that he’s convinced infertility is his problem. I look at it as our challenge (I don’t like calling it a problem). My attempts to discuss it or give comforting words is often met with “you don’t understand how I feel”.

I agree.

Yes, the physical challenge does not lie with me, but does that mean we can’t face it as a team? Was I naive when I believed we could do this together? Was I foolish enough to believe that our relationship would not only survive infertility, but continue to flourish in spite of it?

The decision to put IVF on hold is mine

As desperate as I am to have a child, the decision to put IVF on hold is mainly mine. As you can imagine, this has caused even more friction.

My reason is that I can’t imagine bringing a child into an environment where its parents don’t communicate for fear of misunderstandings. You can’t tip toe around each other throughout the IVF process either. It’s emotionally and physically grueling and I don’t think we’re currently in ‘team mode’ and I believe you need that to go through this process successfully.

My biggest fear is that our relationship will crumble during the IVF process and I’d rather wait it out to see if things improve.

Why am I telling you this?

I struggled with the decision to discuss my relationship here, hence my silence for quite some time. But I feel as though this is one of the possible side effects of infertility. One that I’ve read very little about. Most infertility blogs take take you through the struggle and hopefully success of conceiving. Some have touched on how it affects their relationships.

I want to be candid about every step of this grueling world of infertility.

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

Previous post: