It is a widely held expectation that if and when we choose to, we will be able to have a family. This assumption isn’t challenged until difficulties in conceiving are encountered and for some this presents a major life crisis. It is a multilayered and complex phenomenon and a number of issues are involved for the individual and couple going through it, as it spans the biological, emotional, physical, relational, social, financial and psychological domains. Therefore, infertility is therefore an issue that all counsellors need to be aware of therapeutic support they need.
This differs between males and females, regardless of the cause. It is the nature of these different experiences, in addition to the actual infertility issue, that can exert a significant strain on the couple relationship. The extent to which infertility exerts a negative psychological impact can differ between individuals and couples. These factors are also likely to contribute to whether infertility becomes an experience that prompts individuals and/or couples to seek counseling.
Given that infertility impacts on males and females in distinct ways and that they tend to deal with it in their own way, it follows that they each have distinct counseling needs. The couple unit also has its own distinct counseling needs.
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