Readers Are Spellbound & Perplexed…
Dear GWBW — I got pregnant very quickly with my first child. We are now hoping to have a second child, but I haven’t gotten pregnant after six months of trying. Why am I experiencing fertility challenges this time around? — Former Fertile Myrtle
Dear Former Fertile Myrtle,
That 20% of American couples share your experience, likely gave rise to naming the phenomenon: secondary infertility. While some issues are the same as with primary infertility, secondary has its own including that health care providers don’t tend to pay as much attention (or insurance money) to it, relatives and friends can be less aware of it and may appear lesser concerned, and your own emotions may be projected at those for whom it appears expanding their family is easy and breezy.
Reasons for secondary infertility can echo those of primary, and include the lessening fertility of men (sperm motility to ED) and women (fertility or miscarriage) as they age. So, to see a professional or not? I say if the financial resources and time (all IVF is extremely time consuming and protracted. Your job and other life time-off considerations should be carefully measured beforehand) are available and are in balance with desire to grow your family, then yes. Go find out if your situation is, in fact, secondary infertility or a temporary blip of some other (unconsidered) kind. All I know for sure is that when I want something hyper strongly, I’m not known for my saintly patience and this stress undoubtedly affects my physiology.
Above all, love the family you have,
Dear Former Fertile Myrtle,
Secondary infertility can happen for a variety of reasons. Quite often falling into the medical category of unexplained infertility.
Some basic biological issues (like age) or post-baby lifestyle changes (like taking up marathon running or pot smoking) can interfere with pregnancy. Of course, one of the most likely culprits is stress. Stress puts the body on high alert—fight or flight mode. In this state the body severely reduces “on line” status of any body functions not necessary for speedy fight or flight. This means digestion and reproduction are “off line” when we are stressed. Blood flow is restricted. Nutrient supply diminished.
Try some stress relief tactics that can help you focus your energies toward self-care and your goals of pregnancy, like fertility yoga, acupuncture for fertility and fertility stress management and support groups. Now is the time to learn to meditate. Now is the time to add more greens and folates to your diet. Now is the time to assess how you are expending your precious energies and where those energies need to be realigned to support your healthy, glowing body function and your goal of a second child.
Also, discuss the issue with your GYN or a fertility specialist.
And remember, sometimes the challenges placed in our paths to achieve our goal is exactly the training we need to be successful after achieving our goal. Trust. Believe and be good to you.
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