Dear Coleen: So fed up with my partner’s blasé attitude to starting a family


Should I just pursue fertility treatment?

Dear Coleen: So fed up with my partner's blasé attitude to starting a family

Dear Coleen

I’m 43 and my partner is 47. He has a daughter from a previous relationship, who is now 26.

I was told at the age of 18 that I have polycystic ovaries and that I would probably need help with trying to start a family. I am now finding it rather difficult as all my friends and family are having children. Obviously, I’m very happy for them, but feel so disappointed in my own life without children.

We have discussed starting a family and my partner said he’s not against the idea of having another child and “if it happens, it happens”. He has suggested that we start trying next year when we have our new business up and running.

The problem is, he also has problems that would probably affect our chances of conceiving in that he suffers with delayed ejaculation. He also never seems to want to have sex when I’m actually ovulating.

I’m beginning to resent him for this now as I don’t think he is being honest with me about his desire to start a family. I don’t know what to do. Shall I stay with him and just hope for the best or should I go it alone and pay for fertility treatment and a sperm donor?

Coleen says

You’ve probably read all the stats and know that a woman’s fertility declines rapidly after her mid-30s, so time is definitely not on your side. And, given that you both also have health issues that could affect your chances of conceiving, then I don’t think you can rely on getting pregnant naturally.

I think saying “if it happens, it happens” and delaying it to next year is not showing any real commitment, especially when he knows that the chances of you conceiving naturally are slim.

If having a baby is very important to you, then you have to start talking to him now about the possibility of fertility treatment and how he feels about it.

I think it would also be a good idea to have some fertility checks. The chances of IVF being successful also decline with age so, if you did go down the treatment route, you may also have to look at egg donation.

There are, of course, other options – adoption and surrogacy, which you could make part of the discussion. But none of these routes are a walk in the park – they’re all emotionally challenging and, in the case of IVF, physically demanding too – so they require 100% commitment from both partners.

As far as your relationship goes, this is a tough one. If your partner ends up admitting to you that, actually, he doesn’t want to have a child, then you have to decide if you’re willing to live with that decision.

More of our agony aunt Coleen Nolan’s advice on your sex, family, health and relationship problems

Source: Mirror