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Whether it’s your first child or your fifth, when you first decide to try for a baby, it’s exciting. You don’t have any reason to expect any problems and you begin with the process with an “ignorance is bliss” situation. After the first couple of months, it’s disappointing, but it’s not the end of the world. You know these things take time.

Half A Year

After six months of no pregnancy, your mind begins to fill with doubt. You know you shouldn’t be concerned – especially if you came off birth control, which can take six months to work its way out of your system – but the doubts are beginning to curdle in your mind.

12 Months

By the time a year passes, you’re frantic with concern. You have seen the seasons change, winter slipping into summer and then back again, and you’re scared something might be very wrong. You have now passed the point at which doctors believe it suitable to run fertility tests. They will do so while peppering the conversation with phrases like: “just in case of course! We’re sure everything is fine.”

At this point, there might be some relief from your fears. A problem might be identified, and while it’s difficult to cope with, at least you have answers. You can work with your doctors, talk with clinicians to help with your IVF questions and make decisions on the next steps you might want to take.

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The Dreaded “Unexplained Infertility”

Then there are the cases where there is no obvious barrier to fertility. Both you and your partner have had tests run and there is no clear impediment. It’s one of the most difficult blows, as you are faced with just remaining in limbo for the foreseeable future.

Of course, there are plenty of cases where people try for months if not years, and all of a sudden find themselves pregnant. Sometimes, it just takes awhile – for no obvious reason, nothing that you can change or control.

So what do you do – wait and see? And if so, for how long?

What Do You Feel Comfortable With?

If you are tempted to set a definitive deadline and then you will explore other options, it might be the worst thing you could do. That deadline will be chalked into your mind, panicking you, and ultimately resulting in stress. And what’s a major contributory factor to why women don’t fall pregnant? Stress.

The healthiest thing you can do is let the situation progress entirely as you feel comfortable. Perhaps your age will help make the decision for you; the younger you are, the more time you have to wait and see.

By the time you have passed a year of trying and there is no obvious cause for it, however, then your patience might be up. If you feel it’s the right decision to move forward and look at other choices available to you, then there’s no harm in doing so.

But here’s the thing: you have to do what feels right to you. There is no mythical point at which a light will turn on and you’re good to go: the only decision-maker is how you feel. Factor in ideas like your age, but generally, rely on your gut instinct. In some ways, it’s the ultimate trope but the actual truth: if you’re wondering when it might be time to investigate other options for parenthood, you actually already know.

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