4 years ago I had no idea what on earth POI was. As many of you know, POI doesn’t seem to be a well known, understood or discussed medical condition in the wider world. Many people have never heard of it and this is why I’m extremely proud of the work Daisy Network is doing to help change this. One of the areas though which could be a difficult topic for women suffering with POI, is how do you tell your other half?
Whether you’ve been recently diagnosed with POI or it’s been a condition you’ve known about for years it could be hard subject to talk about… but if you have an understanding, loving and relatively sane boyfriend, partner or husband, they can make it easier than you think!
So I’ve decided to write something from a male perspective to try and help..try being the operative word. Personally having children is not something I’ve ever thought too much about, not that I don’t want children, it’s just how I operate. I don’t like to plan too far ahead and just live in the moment….codeword for being a last minute planner. When my girlfriend told me she had had a condition called POI since she was a teenager, I think I just looked at her with a blank face, mainly because I was trying to work out what the acronym stood for. Once she explained to me what POI was and how it impacts women lives. I wasn’t sad or disappointed, I was more honoured she chose and felt comfortable to share it with me. Over the past couple of years I’ve learned more about the condition with my girlfriend and also by working with the wonderful people associated with the Daisy Network. Through this and my experiences I’ve come up with 3 reasons why POI shouldn’t impact a relationship and why your partner should be the person you trust to tell:
No.1 I love her for who she is and if you also have the right person in your life, they will love you for who you are, having a medical condition doesn’t change that! I’m vertically challenged and can’t be taller than 5’8 for her, so we both aren’t perfect!
No.2 Should we decide to want children, there is the option of IVF and even if that doesn’t work, then why not adopt? Just because a child isn’t genetically mine doesn’t mean I can’t be their father. Unfortunately as we know not all children have the best upbringings so purely being genetically related doesn’t guarantee happiness. Happiness is made not inherited. And we already have a cat baby who we love.
No.3 Who says all my pipes work? There’s no guarantee that I’m fertile so who am I to judge? Unfortunately for women POI’s side effects are usually noticeable and therefore women are typically diagnosed via these. Where as Male infertility can go undetected, more than likely having no side effects and would only be noticed when specific tests are run when couples struggle to conceive.
So in summary, finding out my girlfriend had POI didn’t have a negative or detrimental impact on our future together at all, I don’t think of her any differently than I did before, yes we may have to consider some different fertility options one day, but nothing else has changed. You should be able to trust the person you’re telling and there should be no reason to be scared, afraid or worried. They should be there to love, comfort and help you.
Thanks for reading.