The impact of infertility (part 2)
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The impact of infertility (part 2)

The perspective from adult women mid-thirties to sixties

Four particularly described the fear as a young woman of telling a future boyfriend, as Orten and Orten had found in their study:

  • How will he take me out (4 ft 8 in) when there are girls who are 6 ft, blonde and gorgeous?


  • Once you have a serious relationship, it hits home. The rubber hits the bitumen.

And also:

  • Sometimes one thinks I’m not even going to bother approaching that person.

These words link fertility with sexuality and also seem to suggest that these women saw themselves, perhaps earlier, as diminished in some way by the fact of their syndrome-induced infertility.

Other people were cited as helpful in adjusting to their infertility:

  • My aunt.
  • Having a baby sister.
  • Nieces and nephews. (Echoing Shauna’s reliance on relationships with her very young relatives)
  • Meeting someone really disabled.
  • Joining the Association and talking to others.
  • Friends and new friends.

The women also said they had relied on themselves and their own strengths:

  • Telling myself: ‘Don’t let it overtake your life, there are other things to do.’


  • It’s a private matter, ultimately you have to work through it and deal with it in your own way.

Earlier medical advisors were remembered largely as ‘not helpful’, although all the women Female Viagra Australia were pleased with their current gynaecologists. They said that when they were younger, there was a stigma about counselling. Adoption had been suggested as an alternative route to motherhood for the married older women (when they were younger), and now IVF for the two women in their thirties. One woman referred to a childfree life as an alternative:

  • I’ve travelled my own road… I have been a free agent to go anywhere.

Fostering and inter-country adoption were not mentioned in this discussion and neither were the considerable risks in pregnancy for those with serious heart problems, although they are thoroughly discussed in the scientific literature.

Even though age and experience seemed to ameliorate the effect of infertility, the women’s statements suggested a depth of feeling that was still present from an earlier age. On a one to ten scale of difficulty, with ten the most difficult, fertility was an issue for all five women when they were in the 18–20 age group. Now in the present, one woman in her thirties rated it at four and the second woman in her thirties rated it at nine. The three women 40+ rated infertility at six to eight in their thirties but at one in their forties. This clearly indicates the significant place (as with other women) of fertility difficulties in the child-bearing years of women with TS. One woman’s response resonated with all the other women:

Infertility is one of the cruellest things of Turner Syndrome, the choice was taken from me.

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