The case of the California woman who recently gave birth to octuplets generated an enormous amount of public discussion about infertility treatments. But this unusual case has done little to illuminate the far more common, but usually private, psychological challenges faced by the roughly 1.3 million couples who seek infertility advice or treatment each year in the United States, reports the May 2009 issue of the Harvard Mental Health Letter.
Although the causes of infertility are overwhelmingly physiological, the resulting heartache may exact a huge psychological toll. Individuals who learn they are infertile often experience the distressing emotions common to those who are grieving a loss. Typical reactions include depression, anger, and frustration.
To continue reading this article, you must log in.
Subscribe to Harvard Health Online for immediate access to health news and information from Harvard Medical School.
- Research health conditions
- Check your symptoms
- Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
- Find the best treatments and procedures for you
- Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
I'd like to receive access to Harvard Health Online for only $4.99 a month.Sign Me Up
Already a member? Login ».
As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date of last review or update on all articles.
No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.