The impact of fertility treatment on your relationship and sex life

Like it or not, fertility treatments affect couples, and if you are one of those couples, you must take action. Even if you have a healthy mind, a peaceful life and no stress at all, when you start your fertility treatment things will probably change. Why? Because you cannot control all the variables, and not being in control causes stress.

For at least 10 days you will be paying attention to the medication, the ovarian response or the thickness of your endometrium. But, the only things that depend on you are the time and dose of the medication, and arriving on time to the appointments. To a degree, the amount of information that you take in during each consultation with the health team depends on you also. Studies have shown that patients forget between 40–80% of medical information discussed by healthcare practitioners (Kessels, 2003).

So, when you get out from that consultation or scan you will naturally reflect on what was said, discuss things with your partner and start to look things up on the internet, instead of calling the fertility clinic to ask them again. This is also a stressful moment.

And what happens with sex? Patients know that getting pregnant spontaneously will not be as easy as they thought, so three things may occur: You may try to have as much sex as you can, in order to get pregnant; you may not having sex at all, because you have too much stress and frustration due to the situation that you are in; or you may have sex for fun and relaxation. The last option is the preferable one, but not the most common.

Today we will give you 7 tips to undergo the fertility treatment the best as possible:

The first one it to understand that it’s fine to feel strange, to have stress and to think that the rest of your life is on pause. The treatment will finish either one way or the other, but finish it will.

This brings us to the second tip. You should be mentally prepared to have more than one treatment. The success rates for each fertility treatment depend on several variables, but they are never 100%. Thinking that the treatment you are undergoing may be the first of two or three, will help you to manage expectations.

If you know that you were stressed before starting the treatment, don’t blame yourself. You are not infertile because you were stressed. Nowadays, there is enough evidence that supports that stress is NOT a direct biological cause of infertility.

Have short-term projects. Simple projects that help you reconnect as a couple. A weekend out in the forest or at the beach or having dinner with friends (that do not have children).

Do not talk every day at every time about the treatment. If you feel the need to talk about the treatment, you should allow a maximum of one hour per day to talk about it with your partner (half an hour for each). Once this hour is finished, it is best not to discuss it until the next day. By doing this exercise you will force yourself to think and talk about other topics not related to the project of having a baby.

Choose a few other people to talk to about your concerns. Try not to tell too many people about your situation, because once the treatment finishes, they will all ask you the result and, if it is negative, you will have to repeat several times that the treatment failed and this will be uncomfortable for you.

And last, but not least, never forget that this is a project of the couple, not only yours or your partner’s. It’s a couple and a life project, so take care of your relationship as much as you can, because the baby will be part of your family but not your whole family.