Fear of infertility haunts twenty-somethings

Delayed marriage, years on the pill, maybe a few sexually transmitted infections -- these are surely among the factors causing British women and men to worry about their ability to have children as they approach their 30s.

Two-thirds of women worry that they will not be able to conceive naturally, according to market research commissioned by a firm that sells vitamin supplements. The survey of 3103 men and women aged 28 to 32 shows men as well as women are concerned about their fertility and if they will meet the right partner. Of the women asked, 56 per cent said they would ask a male friend to father a baby with them, if they felt they had not met the right man and that their fertility could be declining. Half of all women said that they think about meeting the right partner on a frequent or daily basis, and three-quarters said that the stress of trying to conceive could lead to the end of a couple’s relationship. More than one in three men and women said they would reconsider staying with a partner who was infertile.

A psychologist commenting on the findings said they showed that people are much more flexible in their definition of “family” these days.

The Vitabiotics survey comes a week after Dr Catherine Hood, a family planning doctor and media personality, told Cosmopolitan magazine: “In sexual health clinics, we’re increasingly seeing women in their twenties not using contraception. When we ask why, they say, ‘I don’t think I can have kids’ -- but often, there’s no reason for them to feel this way. Women used to be scared of getting pregnant -- now, many are scared they can’t, and are willing to take risks.” ~ The Telegraph (UK), Sep 15; 10



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