I am writing today to tell the world out here that #InfertilityNotATaboo. (I still wonder why in our society Infertility is a taboo? Why I cannot speak to my well-educated and modern in most ways family?)
There was a lump in my throat. I was shivering with fear. I had come to know about ‘Un-Dino‘ from her and now this. I did not know what to do, whom to speak to. I cannot approach my elders as I had never heard them say or talk openly about such problems. So I decided to speak to my friend, my wife.
‘What’s troubling you?’ She asked the moment she saw my face.
I stammered. I was taken aback by her question as I was not prepared to answer her straight-away. I simply stared at her for few seconds and mustered the courage to reply her.
‘Baby, D.. Dd… Doo…Don’t you .. think’. She pressed her hand on my mouth signalling me to stop speaking.
‘I know there is tremendous pressure on you and on me to bring our child into this world. I also understand that you fear of the pain while penetrating without using a condom. And I also know that there is no one to whom you can speak and share the concerns.’ She finished, as a matter of fact, placing her hand on mine and holding it tight.
‘So shall we visit an infertility clinic?’ I managed to ask her.
She simply nodded and gave me a warm hug. Somewhere, I felt that even she was worried but was putting up a brave front so that I stay calm.
So upon consulting our family doctor, we visited the recommended infertility clinic. Upon entering the clinic, I heaved a sigh of relief. We were not alone. The clinic was buzzing with patients. Soon our preliminary tests were done and the results were awaited.
Three days later, we went to collect our test results and meet the doctors over there. We held each other’s hand in support.
‘Your wife’s result is absolutely fine’, said the doctor.
I panicked. So it was me. I inferred from doctor’s statement. ‘But there is a problem with you’, stated the doctor meeting my eye. Drops of sweats were trickling down my brows. ‘Your sperm count is way too low. I am giving you few medicines. Take it for 2 months and come once in a fortnight for a sperm count check’, said the doctor monotonously.
I cursed him and my fate. I had heard that those couples who are infertile have to face many difficulties in their day-to-day lives. I shuddered just at the thought of being cursed by relatives, labelled as ‘baanjh‘ and probably even ostracised from family.
After two months of tension, being looked with a suspicious eye by elders in the family, keeping a low profile, not interacting much with anyone except for her, I heaved a sigh of relief. The results were showing improvement and I might not have to go for IUI, IVF and other costly treatments. And finally, I passed with flying colours. She was pregnant without undergoing any treatment. I thanked the Almighty for sending me a friend in the form of my wife who supported me throughout these stressing times.
So what are the key takeaways from my story?
1) Even men can suffer from infertility.
2) Having a guidance and that too a correct one is of prime importance when it comes to infertility. That guidance can be your parents or elders or relatives or even friends. Sadly in my case it was none.
3) A doctor who advises with patience, answers all questions without getting irritated and has a caring attitude will help a lot.
4) Try to stay happy as much as you can. Do not worry much about infertility and other things.
5) Know your days when chances of getting pregnant are high. Also, get to know about sex positions for better results.
6) Have a friend, a dost with whom you can share all your inhibitions and worries openly, just as InfertilityDost.
7) Yes, #InfertilityNotATaboo. Just stay strong and support each other.
This blog is to #SpreadAwareness about Infertility through Infertility Dost, India’s first website that facilitates couples to brave infertility with support and knowledge. You can find other links on Write Tribe.