"America's Leading Experts in Reproductive Health"
Child-Free Living or
Adoption are Options
for Many Infertile Couples.








Adoption and Child-Free Living

Life without children-Choosing not to have children at all is an option. You can select to live child-free. Remember, child free living is a choice you can make i.e., choosing not to have children isn't the same as having childlessness thrust upon you.

You may find that coming to terms with your childlessness gives you the ability to take control of your own life again. Infertility often means living in a state of suspended animation - waiting and waiting forever through tests and treatments for a baby. If you choose to live child-free, you can get on with living again. Plans can be made to explore the endless possibilities of career, travel, recreation, hobbies and togetherness as a couple when previously all the uncertainty made this impossible. When you are chasing the dream of a baby, it is easy to forget that life has the potential for many other dreams and fulfillment.

It is crucial, however, for both partners, should they choose the child-free alternative, to feel they can happily fill their lives with work and other interests. If the husband has a successful career but the wife has little to replace the parenting function, unhappy consequences are likely.

One of the biggest fears people express when considering a child-free life is that they will regret this decision in their older years and end up being lonely and miserable.Children should not be an insurance policy against loneliness in old age. People also worry that when they die, they will have nothing to leave behind. The truth is that children are not the only ones who remember you, nor are they the only means of establishing everlasting memory.

Remember, there can be real advantages to life without children: more personal freedom, more time to spend on your own interests, and more emotional energy to invest in your emotional relationships. Start enjoying your time with your spouse more - remember the early heady days of your marriage before you were striving for a child? Try to recapture those magic moments again. A new lifestyle may be difficult to think about and many people advise that you try to do many things that interest you to give yourself a chance to spend some of your pent-up needs - the need to be needed and the need to do something. It's a matter of balance.

The answer to wanting one thing exclusively is to be involved in many things - to spread yourself around. Taking a holiday to mark the end of treatment and the beginning of a new lifestyle can be very helpful and allows time to relax and assess the situation.

Acceptance or resolution of infertility doesn't mean putting all desire to have children into the past and forgetting about it. Infertility, your experiences and thoughts will always be a part of you and will be remembered with mixed emotions, including sadness, regret and frustration, over the years. Acceptance is more an acknowledgement that your hopes weren't to be and that you have to make some readjustments. It is not something you can do suddenly. You gradually come to this point, maybe over the course of your infertility tests and treatments or maybe only when treatment has finished.

(Child Free Living ,Continued, )



Child Infant Adoption & Myths
on Adoption :
Adoption - Yours by Choice

from the book How to Have a Baby:
Overcoming Infertility
by Dr. Aniruddha Malpani, MD and Dr. Anjali Malpani, MD.

You don't have to be super human, super kind, super loving or perfect to be able to adopt a child - you just have to be ready. Being ready only happens when you've had time to get used to the idea - and if you are infertile, it is never too early to consider adoption. You can begin gathering information from adoption agencies even though you may not be fully committed. It is always a wise strategy to investigate alternatives in case pregnancy does not occur - after all, statistically, the overall chance of pregnancy for an infertile couple undergoing treatment is only about 50 to 70 percent after one or more years of trying.

Also, because many agencies do not accept people over a certain age as adoptive candidates, especially for infants, it is important to collect information so that you don't discover later that you are too old to fulfill a particular agency's requirements.

To couples just beginning to consider adoption the central concern is: can we love an adopted child as our own? Other doubts include:
· What kind of children is available for adoption? Aren't they all misfits or discards?
· Won't adopted children grow up maladjusted?
· What will our families say and do? Will they love a child we adopt?
· Won't the child go off to find its birth parents once it grows up anyway?
· Why do we have to go through so much agony to build a family? Infertility was one struggle and now adoption with its waiting list is a whole new one.
· What will society say? Will our child be accepted by friends and neighbors?

As you find yourself more ready to accept adoption as an alternative, these questions often lose their importance. Some of them disappear when you finish grieving for your biological child - the child that never was - and resolve this grief by allowing healing. Through grief, you learn to focus less on the process of obtaining children and more on the children themselves. A couple must, together and separately, come to terms with their loss - to learn to say good-bye, before they are ready to consider adoption. The other doubts disappear after you talk with adoption agencies; adoptive parents and their families; read books about adoption; and learn how adoption is accomplished. The question then is no longer "Can we do this?" but becomes " How do we do this?"
You will learn that in many ways families with adopted children are the same as any other families. You'll express love, have disputes and make compromises in your daily lives. Your child will be your child, no matter how you came to have him.
Adoptive parenting may be your second choice but it's just as good as biological parenting. It is different - don't try to compare them, one isn't better than the other. However, you will have to deal with several issues that occur only in adoptive families. Prepare yourself to discuss adoption with your child - and to truthfully deal with the myths and misconceptions that many people have about adoption. You may also find that you and your child will often be faced with questions and ignorant comments which assume that adoption is a second-best alternative for all involved.

(Adoption , Continued)

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