Pregnancy

Unbearable: How To Handle Fertility Treatments That Ruin Your Sex Drive

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Having a child is usually a happy time in a woman’s life. Unfortunately, as we wait longer to have children, infertility and trouble conceiving can become a part of the family making process. Unbearable addresses these difficulties.

To recap, natural fertility treatments turn both my husband and I into miserable wretches.

Alright, the things are getting better. I no longer have to tell myself “Don’t puke,” a dozen times throughout the day. We’ve started eating normal meals again. We’ve both dropped a couple pounds. We’re adjusting to life on bee jelly and horse pills. And hopefully, we’re both getting into our prime baby-making health.

There’s just one small problem with this process. An irritable digestive tract has never been a huge turn-on for me. In fact, let’s just put out a warning that this “Unbearable” is going to get pretty direct. You’ve all been warned.

With these fun fertility treatments, my abdomen has too much going on to be in the mood for another activity. It’s busy trying to process an insane amount of vitamins and minerals. It would rather I wait for the frisky business until it’s all done. Except that it’s never done, because I take the mess every day.

I guess what I’m saying is, how effective can a fertility treatment be if it makes me want to stop having sex?

Let’s get real, I could be the most fertile person on earth, but if I’m not having sex, it’s not going to matter a whole lot. IUI and IVF aside, I still need to sleep with my husband if I want to wake up with a bun in the oven. It’s kind of a part of this whole process, even though it’s a part that we forget about sometimes. But who really wants to start making babies when you’re uncomfortable and nauseous?

I’ve often argued about the effects of stress on infertility. Contrary to popular belief, stress doesn’t stop a woman from getting pregnant, it simply has the ability to slow down ovulation, making the peak fertility time more difficult to predict. Most people I know who have been trying for a while give up on that whole “assuming your cycle is normal” nonsense and start tracking with basal temperature or using fertility tests. That mostly eliminates the possibility of stress influencing your chance at conception.

Unless you count one other key stress factor, it reduces your libido. Feeling stressed or frustrated just makes you a lot less likely to be in the mood for a little naughty business. Once again, no sex means no baby, which then becomes even more stressful. It’s a horrible cycle.

It’s almost ironic the ways that infertility makes it even more difficult to get pregnant. Just coping with the issue or attempting to treat brings about it’s own set of problems that hinder conception. Not “Ironic” in a catchy Alanis Morissette way, ironic in a “Life really sucks sometimes,” kind of way.

I have to go now, it’s time for me to choke down more bee jelly.

(Photo: mast3r/Shutterstock)