For many couples, the introduction of children into a relationship is the ultimate fulfillment and goal of the relationship. Unfortunately for some of the couples, medical conditions may exist that will prevent natural fertilization. In those cases, the affected couple may opt to conceive via In vitro Fertilization. For those couples of decide to pursue In vitro fertilization, the time leading up to the fertilization will be very process oriented - there will be consultations, evaluations, forms, literature and a lot of listening. At times it may seem overwhelming and frightening.
Who is in vitro fertilization for?
IVF is not for everyone; in fact, less than 5% of infertile couples resort to IVF because other infertility fixes are usually tried first. IVF is, however, the treatment of choice for women with blocked, severely damaged or no fallopian tubes. IVF is also used to overcome infertility due to endometriosis, advanced age of the woman or, for men, low sperm count. Lastly, IVF is often tried when all other fertility fixes fail.
As the male participant in the process, your involvement will be largely in a support role, as most of the work that will need to be done will be with the female partner. To help make the process as easy for her, there are a number of facts to keep in mind and a number of actions you can take to help keep your partner's spirits up and to help her in the necessary steps to achieve a successful fertilization.
- You and your partner may struggle with the fact that you are unable to conceive by natural means. However, keep in mind - although it may not be a natural form of conception, the end result and the end goal of the process is the same - a healthy child. The two of you are merely trying to maximize the possibility of a healthy & successful pregnancy. Talk through this point and be open to her feelings.
- There will be a lot of absorb about the process, so take notes and do your research.
- Some of the medications required for the process will need to be administered via injection. Offer to administer the shots if your partner is not comfortable doing so, and keep in mind that she will most likely be very sore in the injection spots because of repeated shots. A little tender loving care will help keep her confident and comfortable. Also, a heating pad may help during periods where her abdomen is very tender.
- Your partner will be asked to take very specific medications, at very specific times and she will need to consult with the doctor on a somewhat frequent basis, often times on very short notice. Make sure to keep your schedule as free as possible so you can assist in transportation and medicine administration as needed.
- Your partner may experience emotional mood swing because of some of the meds. One minute she might be sitting at the table reading the newspaper, the next she is crying about something unrelated. Be prepared, be supportive and remember that her mood will return to normal in time.
- Always remember - you have the easy part of the process!
In vitro is not an easy process, especially compared to natural fertilization. But with care, cooperation and a willingness to help out where needed, you can be active and helpful throughout the fertilization period.
The information in this article is for educational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice or medical services. If you have or suspect that you have a medical problem, promptly contact your doctor promptly.