A colleague pointed me in the direction of this post this week, about male fertility, stigma and the silence that is often to see to surround this topic. This article, which is both personal and insightful, demonstrates how fertility can be an unspoken issue which impacts on the lives of men.
The challenge of keeping our private lives, just that, private, yet allowing space in society in which its ‘ok’ to talk about more private elements of our lives, including reproduction and (in) fertility therefore seems unresolved.
Events such as ‘Let it all hang out’ which was held in London earlier this year, in which conversations are being started by and for men, around fertility, infertility and the challenges of being a man in the context of delayed conception, show promise in terms of demonstrating that fertility and reproduction are issues which men care deeply about, and that are not, and should not be wholly feminised. This short film from the event is well worth a watch to understand how and why such conversations are needed.
As I have written about elsewhere, men are often overlooked in research about fertility and reproduction, and an important part of getting men onto and into agendas around fertility and reproduction is about having conversations, of society being accepting to such discussions and men feeling that is okay to talk about these important aspects of their lives.
So, lets get talking about, understanding and sharing about fertility and reproduction, lets get men’s views, support men, and in turn offer better more thoughtful space and services for those men and women seeking to have children.