[beginning fertility issues]

Information for TTC Couples...

Written by TTC Couples.


Low-Tech Ways to Help You Conceive - Chapter 12

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Low-Tech Ways to
Help You Conceive


Starting 3-5 days after ovulation I bleed after intercourse. My progesterone levels were checked twice,is normal. Should I worry ? I do spot two days before my period starts, but I was told this is also normal. Anybody in the same boat ?

My DW and I have this problem from time to time; in our case we're pretty sure it's caused by her cervix being "tapped" or hit during intercourse. At the time of ovulation, your cervix is drawn higher up in your body (i.e., your vagina is deeper), but after ovulation it returns to a lower position, and is therefore more likely to be touched by the penis during sex. For us it just means taking it easy!

BTW, it happens more often in some positions than others; the woman-on-top is the biggest problem -- but that position should be avoided by anyone with fertility problems anyway.

Chances [of conceiving] are more increased right after delivery. [Breastfeeding] doesn't matter. The cervix is loose from delivery so it is easier for the sperm to swim "upstream." This is what my doctor said.:-)

RAH - I'm (nervously) including this item because it's a good example of WRONG information floating around in the medical community! The fact is that it's exceedingly rare for ovulation to resume immediately after delivery. There is also no basis in fact for the idea that the cervix and uterus are better-prepared for conception right after delivery; in fact there are few times that your reproductive system is LESS ready for conception. If your doctor or health-care provider tells you this, politely suggest that he/she take a course in basic reproductive physiology :-). - RAH

I had endometriosis for 12 years, controlled with a laparoscopy and birth control pills - you'd expect me to have taken longer than a month to conceive! In fact, I worried about this for years. Then I conceived the first time we got the timing right, both times we tried, at ages 31 and 35. Endometriosis can be a major cause of fertility problems, but not always.

We got back a [very high sperm] count of 291 million/ml; and close to 800 million total. RE1 said no problem; RE2 said that a high count could cause problems. I will ask RE2 for a reference in the literature. Does anyone know of one? Has anyone had fertility problems attributed to a high count?

I believe there could be a problem with clumping.

TCoYF: Vitamin C 1000 mg with two other vitamins

Has anyone had fertility problems attributed to a high count?

With a count like that would you consider being a sperm donor?? ;) Sorry, professional interest, you know...

The only problem there could be is a "traffic jam". Seriously...

I was hoping to see some mention of the phenomenon of women ovulating in response to intercourse, at various times of the month. We know this happens with several mammal species, and I've found some biology books that mention there is anecdotal evidence this happens with some humans.

Todays informative info from m.k. In the frightening new thought of the day category, this is right up there with the poster who informed me of the possibility of my child removing his diaper during the night.

Today I am ovulating, and the past couple of days we've been occupied with this endeavor. However, last night things just didn't work and nothing this morning either, so the last time we had intercourse was 36 hours ago. I guess there was too much pressure to perform. My husband has also taken the attitude that I have to make it fun for him and get him interested. I really tried, but after a year of this, the fun is pretty much gone, especially on Days 13/14 of my cycle. Is it too much to expect him to take the initiate sometimes? I know if must be hard for him, too - does anyone have any suggestions that might help?

You know, I'm surprised this issue doesn't come up more often, on this group and/or on m.k.p. For us guys, being unable to get or keep an erection is not an unknown occurrence, in the face of knowing that you HAVE to do it!

There's another aspect that can interfere with performance, and adds to the pressure, too: From adolescence onward, a lot of males have this deeply-buried mental alarm system that goes off anytime sex is on the horizon, and this alarm carries the message: "Whatever you do, DON'T get her pregnant." Until it's time to actually start trying, the *last* thing a couple wants to happen is a pregnancy. It can be really hard to switch gears abruptly and start thinking of conception as a favorable outcome. I don't know how often this translates into actual inability to get or keep an erection, but it really is a difficult thought to erase overnight, and it does add to the pressure.

When my DW and I were living together, and in the early years of our marriage, we were not interested in having children. Our only contraceptive method was condoms (with no spermicide except what was on the condoms already.) This was nerve-wracking for me, because I had this constant fear that one of the condoms would break or be defective (It never happened, but I still worry even now...) This did result in a number of occasions where I couldn't perform, out of nervousness. When we did finally decide to start trying, I had the same problem on several occasions, just out of the sheer "strangeness" of taking that big step and doing without birth control. So, be aware that DH's may have that lurking fear -- I think time, and getting used to the idea is the only cure!

How to "handle" the performance problem? (Sorry, couldn't resist :-) ). I've seen a lot of good suggestions so far; here are a few additional ones that have worked for us:

* I agree with [previous poster]: Lingerie is the single best thing to get many of us in the mood. It doesn't always have to be Frederick's of Hollywood stuff, either -- there are more males than you'd think who get turned on by seeing women in plain, ordinary underwear. (Maybe this comes from looking at the Sears catalog when we were 11 years old -- I dunno, but it works!) My DW usually wears sports bras and regular cotton bikini underwear, but even a minor switch to something like thong panties can have a magical effect :-).

* Change of scenery can be good -- different room in the house, or a different place altogether (try a motel room, or ask to stay in a friend's place while they're away). Or, go to the pool, or the beach if it's warm -- you get the advantage of the change of scene plus the lingerie-like effect of wearing only swimsuits. (You might want to wait till you get to a more private location before you take advantage of the stimulation, however... :-)).

* Alcohol is a tricky thing -- for some of us, the effect of a little alcohol is relaxing, but for others it ruins the ability. And too much is always bad for sex (not to mention its effects on fertility.) For me, a glass of wine or the equivalent can help, but I wouldn't go past that.

* Exercise can help, in a paradoxical way -- it can give me an energy lift, and at thre same time it's a good way to let off stress. It's probably not gonna help to try it immediately after a marathon, but try a low or moderate intensity workout an hour or two before bedtime.

* A suggestion that I hope isn't too graphic: Oral sex. If you can bring him just to the point of orgasm that way, he'll probably be able to finish through intercourse. (This might takes practice; if there's too long a gap between stopping one activity and starting another, it can mean starting from scratch again.)

* Along the same lines, many guys respond to having their prostates touched or gently massaged. It can sustain an erection that's about to wilt, and for some it can trigger an orgasm almost immediately. This doesn't work for me at all, but I think I'm in a distinct minority.

* Try waking him up for sex -- when you're half asleep, it's hard to be stressed, but it's easy to get an erection. You might combine the oral sex, and get things started before he wakes up -- by the time he realizes what's happening, he's halfway there, and won't have time to feel pressured.

Overall, I think [previous poster] is right -- if it doesn't work one month, don't stress over that. It won't help, and can add to the pressure. This might be the one aspect of infertility where the advice "just relax" DOES make sense.

Is it too much to expect him to take the initiate sometimes? I know if must be hard for him, too - does anyone have any suggestions that might help?

About the husband thing, I can relate to that too. My DH isn't as keen on this as I am, partly because he's afraid it will work, I guess. (after 2 years of this, I've lost that 'fear'!) He too fell down on the job when the time was right. What I did that worked was I kept it up all month. I made it habit to be passionate every day (or every other day) so that when it came 'time', it isn't such a big deal. He didn't feel like he had to, NOW. You have to realize that the poor fellows haven't nearly as much control over their reactions as we do and sometimes you just have to work with them.

Lingerie. Yes, lingerie. Wear the sexiest lingerie you can find and then plop down in a chair in front of the tv (or wherever he is) and just chat or relax for awhile. He will notice and become interested and then just go from there...

Try not to blame him for the problems. This sort of thing sometimes happens. Also, it would be nice if he did some of the seducing but you have to work with what you have and under the circumstances it sounds like things are up to you -- at least until you're no longer under such pressure. Try not to make it into anyone's "fault" that sex has more pressure now.

Well, I don't know; I think you're just going to hate this, but here it is: You must back off. Sorry, sorry, sorry, I know, I know, I know, it's hard to let a precious month go by, but pressuring a man to perform is probably THE most counterproductive tactic in the history of civilization. Seriously, it can lead to short-term impotence at best and the break-up of your marriage at worst. That doesn't mean you can't try to tempt him ;-) but if he gives a clear "not interested" signal, you're going to have to let the subject drop.

I agree, 100%. I don't think they do it on purpose either. Something to do with the male sexual response.

Like I said earlier, casually hanging out in sexy lingerie is likely to interest him. Not hanging out in a demanding way. Just casually put a robe on top and make sure its draping open in the right places. That sort of thing.

Greetings. Friends of mine are on year #4 {yee gawds} and here's what, uhm, works:

    1) no pressure
    2) no deadline
    3) no "must"s
    4) showers/baths together
    5) lingerie
    6) massages
    7) making time to be together (ie. not after a horrible day)
    8) occasional wet T-shirt :-)

All the advice in this thread has been right on the money. Guys under pressure generates a similar behaviour as a deer that FROZE and the wolves have absolutely no clue what to do... and might walk away distracted by something that IS moving... Not to imply any of that "prey" stuff... The point is that whatever pressure the guy feels, Mr. Happy feels it 100x magnified [smirk]

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