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More People Talk Openly About Infertility

It is reassuring to read that the topic of infertility is becoming less taboo in today’s culture. Here’s to hoping this openness extends into the future.

Many people dream of having a family. For those struggling with infertility issues, starting a family can be frustrating and disheartening.
More women are seeking help for fertility issues. At the same time, more people are sharing their experiences.

With three children, Jon and Misty DeGroot have a couch-full, but it wasn’t easy getting to this point.

“It’s just patience and waiting, which when you want to be a mom, that’s really hard,” Misty said.

Before giving birth to her oldest child, Max, Misty suffered two miscarriages.

“The first one I was well into my fourth month, so that’s definitely hard. You go in and want to find out the gender of your baby and find out you lost your baby,” Misty said.

Misty was diagnosed with a condition called Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, which can impact a woman’s ability to have children. With medication she was able to have both Max and her daughter Izzy, but she had to try for a year and a half before conceiving her youngest child, 18-month-old Lyncoln.

“I hadn’t been pregnant in a long time. I was a little older, so things were a little more difficult with him,” Misty said.

More people like DeGroot are talking about issues related to infertility, but just a few decades ago women didn’t have that conversation.

“They didn’t talk about periods. You didn’t see Tampon commercials. You didn’t talk about Tampons. You didn’t talk about almost anything that had to do with becoming pregnant,” Avera OB/GYN Dr. Jane Gaetze said.

Gaetze says the increase in infertility conversation can be helpful for patients like DeGroot.

“Once you start talking to women and opening up you find so many of us are going through the same struggles, so it’s nice to know you’re not alone,” DeGroot said.

It’s also a way to share information, but Gaetze says it’s important to give the right information.

“I think there’s too much emphasis for some reasons where people start to say I haven’t gotten pregnant in six months. Therefore, I’m infertile. That’s misinformation being used in a wrong way,” Gaetze said.

While everyone’s pregnancy story is a little different, DeGroot says despite all the struggles, it’s definitely worth it.

“That’s my life. That’s everything to me is my kids. Absolutely, it’s worth it,” DeGroot said.

Doctors typically recommend an infertility evaluation after trying to become pregnant for a year. But if you’re 35 or older or you or your partner has a problem that could impact your fertility, you should see a doctor.


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