Canadian Infertility Awareness Week, or CIAW, is an annual occurrence intended to generate a better understand of the struggles and frustrations associated with infertility amongst couples and single individuals. This year, CIAW runs from May 7th to the 13th, and I thought I would compose a post addressing the topic of infertility to acknowledge the men and women unwillingly participating in this struggle.
On infertility awareness.org, it is stated that: “… 15% of couples in America [are impacted by infertility]. Infertility does not discriminate based on race, religion, sexuality or economic status. You never know how badly you want something until you are told that it may not be possible”.
Despite being unfamiliar of the emotional pain involved with infertility, I think this quote is absolutely significant in beginning to comprehend the struggle of infertility. In Canada, approximately 16% of couples encounter infertility, with this percentage being twice as high as it was in the 1980s (fertility matters.ca). In 30% of cases, infertility is affiliated with men; in 40% of cases, infertility is associated with women; in 20% of cases, infertility it affiliated with both male and female factors; in 10% of cases, no explanation can be determined for the cause of infertility.
I know several persons who are currently struggling with infertility, and while I cannot begin to understand their experiences with this issue, I do yearn to better my understanding of the topic. Infertility is not something that is selective, inherent amongst specific persons, nor is it something that can pick and choose whom it wishes to impact. It is something that requires discussion in order to generate a stronger awareness of what it entails and what can be done for persons experiencing it.
If you know someone who has been impacted by infertility or is currently experiencing it, be respectful and mindful of their struggle. Do not attempt to understand what they are going through if you have not experienced it yourself, but rather offer a listening ear and allow them to confide in you emotionally.
Please take a moment to do some research about infertility in order to participate in CIAW before the end of the week.