I'm going to come right out and say this. It's what every childbirth educator on the planet thinks and what we all talk about in our private forums, but what very few of us dare to say in public.
There have been some tremendous scientific developments over the last three decades in the realm of assisted conception, opening a great number of doors for women and transforming the way we think about fertility. However, I still believe that self-care needs to be front of mind for couples that are trying to conceive.
This must not be mischaracterised as an issue of freedom of speech. The right to free speech must be balanced with the right for women to seek advice and treatment in confidence and free from intimidation. Anti-choice campaigners are free to protest in public spaces, but it is unacceptable for them to be positioned outside clinics where women are trying to enter. These are not political protests. The campaigners' tactic is now to make women feel so scared, ashamed and insecure that they refrain from accessing a service they are perfectly entitled to.
As many readers might already know, exposing pregnant women to stress at constantly high levels can be detrimental to foetal development, placing the newborn at an extreme disadvantage emotionally and intellectually.
Researchers recently discovered the existence of Egg Precursor cells (EggPC) in the outer cortex of female ovaries. These immature egg cells can mature into fresh, young eggs. Scientists even believe that these intact, immature egg cells can be found in a woman of any age.
I remember the excitement I felt seeing that little blue cross in the small square window of my pregnancy test. It seemed surreal. I was 27 years old and pregnant with my first son. I couldn't wait to share the news with my husband but I wanted to find the perfect way to tell him. We both wanted a baby but I sensed that, like many men, he still didn't feel 'ready'.
I highly recommend ensuring pregnant women increase their omega 3 levels, and work towards a healthier balance of omega 3 to omega 6 as this has been shown to increase our brain power, sleep and mood, and may help us fight any addictive tendencies. However, there is a concern from some readers, especially when pregnant, that eating too much fish (one of the most common sources of Omega 3) can be risky.
Men, please don't act like it's your god given right to date a much younger woman and use the phony excuse of children. After all, I've never heard of men's sperm count increasing with age.
Prematurity often comes with few warning signs and mums and dads can be unprepared. Some may not have started attending their antenatal classes or even begun thinking about the birth. Uncertainty about their baby's health and seeing them linked to wires and machines can be an incredibly frightening and scary experience.
Couples can wait up to two years if they qualify for a free round of IVF with their local NHS Trust, but the qualifying criteria varies, and usually excludes couples if one of the partners has a child already, can be age dependent for the female and is basically down to funding, which can run out at anytime regardless of where you are on the waiting list.
Maybe fertility medicine will transform to such a rapid degree in the next 30 years that we will be living in a world previously only imagined by sci-fi writers, where pregnancy is hyper-managed, as Djerassi describes. I think it's far more likely that we will continue to want to have our babies the old fashioned way
Fertility is a peripheral need for the body it is not essential for its survival. Of course as a species we need to be able to conceive but not as an individual. So if the body is under stress the message goes to the brain that this is not the optimal time to conceive and that you are in danger.
We all know that there's more to getting pregnant than just thinking positively. On the other hand, it's not all about having sex at the 'right' time. Scientists are continuing to learn more and more about the powerful connection between mind and body and how this can affect a person's fertility.
Let's start by looking at the financial issues - egg freezing costs around £5000 for a single cycle and then £200 per year for egg preservation, which is a hefty fee for those who do not work at Apple or Facebook.
One of the many reasons that women, and occasionally men, come to see me for weight loss advice is because they want to start a family, but are struggling. Did you know that obesity is a major cause of difficulty getting pregnant - and can increase the risk of miscarriage or problems during pregnancy and childbirth?
In the end, I had to pick the outcome to the situation that would make me hate myself the least. Retrospectively, it was like picking a way you'd like to die. Obviously, you're going to go for the easiest, most painless option you can. But, in addition, you're still going to die. And all of this is quite ironic, seeing as it wasn't my life I was choosing to end.