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Infertility and Depression

Many couples who cannot have their own biological children suffer from depression. To know more about relation between infertility and depression, just read this iBuzzle article.
Having a child is a beautiful experience for every couple. But not everyone experiences this happiness. Some couples, whose attempts to conceive, fail repeatedly, suffer from severe depression; especially women, who undergo a lot of emotional turmoil due to infertility symptoms. Men too have their share of depression, as traditionally, a man who cannot have children is not considered manly enough. All such emotional and social issues associated with infertility, makes things difficult for people who cannot have biological children.

Depression due to Infertility

According to psychologists, depression due to infertility is quite different from usual depression. This kind of depression includes the melange of myriad emotions, that includes jealousy, obsession, anger, sadness, self doubt, low self image and loneliness. Many infertile women are known to withdraw themselves from social activities and they tend to get isolated. In our society, the notion of a happy family is associated with children and womanhood is associated with pregnancy, so, couples who do not have kids feel incomplete and unhappy. The anger and jealousy increases when other friends of the same age group have children and have a so-called happy family. At such moments, women start blaming themselves. The feeling of guilt becomes strong when they realize, that their spouse or in-laws and other relatives are desperately waiting for the new member in the family. And when women feel that they are depriving others of the happiness, it makes them feel even more guilty and lose all their self-confidence. Dealing with depression becomes difficult in such a mental state.

Sometimes, after one or few miscarriages, couples also start losing faith in the doctor, leading to negligence towards medication. This along with degrading mental health can further reduce their chances of conceiving. Such emotional problems can also trigger differences between the partners. It happens, when one of the partners is desperate and badly wants a child and the other partner is ready to compromise. In such cases, both the partners generally do not come to a consensus, as to which treatment to take or whether they need a treatment or not in the first place. Sometimes, infertility in women, forces them to maintain distance (both physically and mentally) from their spouse and this makes the problem worst. So, it not only affect the couples but also other members in the family. Today there are various treatments available for infertility, but dealing with infertility depression is still a challenge.

How to Cope with Infertility Depression

The basic step involved in coping with any kind of depression is, having a positive frame of mind, that allows you to find out innovative solutions to the pertaining problem. Another important aspect is to accept the problem and find the solution accordingly. According to some psychologists, infertility and depression are correlated. If a woman trying to conceive is suffering from depression, she might lessen her chances of getting pregnant. And the inability to conceive would throw her into the girth of depression. Women are trapped in this vicious circle. Hence, it is important for would-be mothers to be emotionally sound and mentally strong. Women with signs of infertility, undergoing infertility treatment, need to be counseled and they should be provided with support, that helps them cope with depression. At such depression counseling sessions, women should talk about their problems and should express their feelings and opinions frankly. This provides some emotional relief and the pent up emotions are channelized in a better manner.

Following the treatment regularly and having faith in the treatment is very important. Instead of going for doctor shopping, it is advisable to complete one treatment, as simultaneous treatments can have adverse effects on the body. Such couples can also join support groups, where they can meet other couples who too cannot have biological children. This certainly helps them cope with depression better. When they see other people with the same problems, the anger and jealousy is reduced to a certain degree. This also helps in getting back the lost confidence and self respect. The other family members also play a major role in helping the couple to deal with infertility as well as depression and restore hope in their hearts. This helps the couple remain optimistic during the emotional crisis.

And lastly, a couple can give a thought to adoption. Child is after all a child, be it adopted or biological, he or she is sure to bring sunshine to your life. They say, merely having a child does not make you a parent. Parenting is all about care, love, and compassion. So, you can shower other children with love and that should make you happy and satisfied.

Disclaimer: This article is for informative purposes only and does not in any way attempt to replace the advice offered by an expert on the subject.
By Geeta Dhavale
Published: 7/8/2010
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