Do you think infertility ruins women's lives

Unfulfilled desire to have children is a burden on the soul

Despite the desire to have children, around every fifth couple does not become pregnant. According to surveys, only eight percent of Germans made a conscious decision not to have children. Unintentionally childless couples are under enormous pressure. Girlfriends get pregnant, the sister is having a second child and the in-laws want a grandchild. Often the situation leads to a relationship crisis. How couples can learn to deal with childlessness.

The couple has often tried everything: sex on a calendar, hormone treatment, surgery and, as a last resort, artificial insemination. The hope of missed periods and monthly disappointment determine the lives of these women and their partners.

Sex as a means to an end

Formerly a spontaneous sex life, today only after temperature measurement and ovulation calendar - in almost all couples with an unfulfilled desire to have children, the sex changes. "Intercourse by appointment" affects the joy in bed immensely and leads to the fact that sexuality outside of the fertile days is restricted or no longer takes place at all, since the couple has lost the pleasure. If a fruitful day passes unused, the guilty conscience is there. At this point at the latest, the couple must think about how they want to deal with the issue of having children, because in the long term, not only the fun of sex but the entire relationship falls by the wayside.

Do not desperately want to have children

Even if the soul hurts - doggedness does not help. A child cannot be forced, not even by taking temperature or hormone treatment. Even artificial insemination does not always lead to pregnancy. Even if it is difficult: Distance from wanting to have children is the first step towards pregnancy. Many women report that they suddenly became pregnant after having come to terms with a childless life. Of course, the wish cannot simply be ignored. In her book "Unfulfilled Desire for Children", Jutta Fiegl gives the advice not to think convulsively about wanting to have children and thereby change behavior.

Pleasure instead of duty

The psychotherapist recommends women to think back to times when the desire for children and frustration were not yet an issue. The partners should make themselves aware of the lovable qualities of the other, to fall in love again, so to speak. This will take the pressure off the two partners over time, says the author. Further tips from the clinical therapist:

  • Distract

    The higher your well-being, the better your body is. Therefore, treat yourself to something pleasant at least once a day, ensure relaxation, sufficient exercise and a healthy diet.

  • Talk to each other

    Talk about your feelings. That's part of the processing. Trying to protect one another by not addressing the issue is counterproductive. It is also helpful to confide in at least one other person. An outsider can give new food for thought.

  • Choose people you trust carefully

    Don't let yourself be pressured. This also means that you do not share your problems, thoughts and medical measures with everyone. Advice and questions about the unfulfilled desire to have children can hurt. You also have the right to privacy with your parents and in-laws. Respond with counter-questions: "Why is it so important to you whether and when we have children?" or "Did you actually plan your child?"

What if you never want to have children?

How do we deal with not having children? This question is the hardest but also the most important. If it becomes a taboo or controversial topic, couples should seek therapeutic help. If you can discuss the topic openly, consider adopting or having a foster child.

Grief work - an important process

Concluding with the desire to have children means for many unintentionally childless couples: giving up. The "grief work" is an important process of saying goodbye and rethinking. If the life plan was clearly drawn before - wedding, career, building a house, starting a family - at least the last part now has to be reconsidered and an alternative found.

Think about whether you've put hobbies on the back burner lately. Or are there professional challenges that you can tackle now. What is preventing you from pursuing these dreams or activities now, regardless of whether you want to have children?

When is the end of fertility treatments?

Set a time frame for fertility treatments. This gives you options to structure your life, even if it shouldn't work out with the baby. You are less likely to lose your quality of life and only live for a possible pregnancy.

What can the partner do?

It is often forgotten that it is not only the woman who mourns if it does not work to have children - her partner has also wanted a child and has to live with the situation. If the mood in the relationship is already very tense and it is not possible to develop new perspectives without a child, it is advisable to address this in therapy or counseling.

Happy without a child

Couples can find helpful tips in the book "Abschied vom Kinderwunsch" by social worker Iris Enchelmaier. She suggests making a list of all the benefits and freedoms that childless couples enjoy. Write down what you can experience with your partner that would not be possible as a family. Plan these activities - a city trip, an active or cultural trip - and make yourself aware that this is something special. New experiences and experiences give you new energy. Think if there are joint projects that you can tackle as a couple.

If dealing with children is very important to you, think about which children there are in your environment that you can look after from time to time. Parents are sure to be happy about a "godmother" and "uncle" who go to the zoo with the children every two weeks. If family contact hurts you, do more with childless couples. Then at the latest you will notice how free you are without children.