Many couples think that falling pregnant is something that would happen naturally. However for many, after years of trying to conceive, after several miscarriages, several unsuccessful IVF procedures, different alternative traditional and religious methods, coming to term with living with infertility and becoming childless not by choice can be a depressing choice to make.
The resulting frustration and bitterness can be a destructive force unless it is possible to come to terms with what is truly a state of grief.
Childlessness is a growing issue worldwide, and current estimate suggest that about 5% of women now of childbearing age will not for a variety of reasons ever have a child even after exhausting all infertility procedures.
There are so many ways in which one can channel the yearning to have a child and still live a fulfilled and happy although child free life.
Acceptance after exhausting all options of the inevitability of one’s infertility and acknowledging its existence is a major step one might have to take to change the direction of the rest of one’s life.
There are compensations to be found in the freedom to develop one’s self rather than focusing many years with bitterness of a life of childlessness.
Childlessness is defined as the condition of being without children. Childlessness usually has a personal, social and sometimes political significance.
Childlessness could be voluntary or involuntary. Voluntary childlessness is sometimes described as childfree, and it is a consequence of having made a decision not to reproduce. Voluntary childlessness could be due to personal choice or as a result of celibacy.
To be childless not by choice is define as involuntary childlessness.
Involuntary childlessness is due to infertility, death of a child, medical or gynecological reasons, lack of resources, lack of partner or social infertility.
The options for involuntary childlessness includes all the infertility management discussed thus far, ranging from counselling, to assisted reproductive technologist such as IVF and adoption.
Due to complex organ complications, some individuals cannot produce a biological child and for such people the issues of surrogacy and adoption or fostering becomes an option.
Negative Impact of Involuntary Childlessness
For many couples, the realities of becoming involuntarily childless can be a personal tragedy with severe psychological pain, grief and distress similar to a state of bereavement, with anxiety and a depressive state
There can be a social stigma and financial stress in less developed societies associated with involuntary childlessness. In some society and tribe in Nigeria, lack of a male child is considered unfortunately as a type of childlessness, and can affects succession in tribal royalty.
Positive Impact of Involuntary Childlessness
There are many ways in which involuntary childless couples can channel their yearning for a child into more positive and fulfilled live. There are many compensations to be found in the freedom to develop oneself rather than focusing on the bitterness of a life of childlessness.
It is a fact in many societies that childless couples (voluntary or involuntary trend to have higher education and couples tend to be in a higher professional and managerial positions in life.
Childless couples tend to have higher paying jobs with dual income and financial stability. They enjoy a better quality of life.
They tend to live a healthier life, exercise, eat healthy, take vacations and are generally healthier than their counterparts with children.