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Fertility New Year's Resolutions? The Time Is Now


a blog by Laurence A. Jacobs, M.D., Fertility Centers of Illinois, January 11, 2012

Les Brown, a famous motivational speaker, often says, “Life is not a dress rehearsal." It's particularly meaningful during the month of New Year's Resolutions.

The desire for positive life-changes is in the air during January. And yet, this desire often doesn’t last long. Men and women have good intentions, but they usually lose steam as they roll through the year. For many of my patients, their infertility makes them feel absolutely miserable. So how can we change that? This article may seem a bit harsh to some, but I am simply being honest … it's tough love, but I'm trying to help.

To quote Dr. Phil: “You need to hear what you need to hear."

To follow are some common themes I hear among my patients:

  • “it’s just not fair … so many young girls who don’t even want a baby get pregnant by accident, doing all the wrong things."
  • “I feel like I no longer have any control over my life or my fertility treatments. Things are just done to me.”
  • “I am so stressed and miserable, I need you to get me pregnant so I can feel better."

The fact is, life is not fair. If you are my fertility patient, I need your help in order to improve your chances of getting pregnant. I recommend to all fertility patients that you take back control, so you can feel better about yourself, your partner and your life in general … and also improve your chances of getting pregnant.

Granted, some things like the “biological clock” and the aging process we have no control over … you or me. Eggs that are 40 years old are not as good as eggs at 35 or 30. It's not fair. However, many lifestyle issues under your control do make a difference in your chances to conceive.

Research indicates that couples who make resolutions together are much more likely to adhere to them (as long as their partner does). So keep helping each other!

Your infertility journey needs to be a team effort — you and your partner, along with a fertility doctor's knowledge and technical skills, and God’s help. Now is the time to empower yourself and take back control over your life and your lifestyle issues. Only you can improve your physical and mental health and make yourself feel better. Picture how much better you will feel in 2012 when you take charge of the physical, mental, personal, financial, sexual and spiritual issues in your life that really matter. Going forward, you need to feel that you are doing all you can to optimize your chances to conceive.

Life is not a dress rehearsal. This is it. Now is the time.

In my next blog, I will outline some helpful tips to get started.


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