Could astrology boost your chances of getting pregnant?

After four ­miscarriages and six failed IVF ­treatments, Mandy Parry was no stranger to studying charts in her quest to be a mum.
She knew precisely where she was in her menstrual cycle as readily as she knew the day of the week. In the five years she and her ­husband Mark had been trying to ­conceive, Mandy tried ­spiritual ­healing, feng shui, ­acupuncture, organic diets and a host of herbal remedies.

Then, in a last attempt, Mandy ­consulted a fertility astrologer to help her get pregnant.

‘Mark and I had spent more than £50,000 on treatments and we’d both taken ­second jobs to pay for them,’ Mandy says. ‘All the ­heartbreak had made me ­profoundly depressed – at times I wanted to die. The odds were so stacked against us.’ But now the couple are the proud parents of eight-month-old Violet. And Mandy has no doubt it was astro-­fertility that has helped to fulfil her dream of becoming a mother.

‘Though I was sceptical, I was also ­desperate,’ says Mandy. ‘I don’t even read my horoscope and Mark thought it was a complete waste of money. But when you want a baby as badly as I did, you will ­consider anything. ‘Since Violet was born I feel ­intoxicated with happiness. I still can’t quite believe she’s here. All of my ­scepticism has melted away.’

But can credit for this miracle ­conception really be given to ­star-­gazing – and is there a shred of ­evidence to support it?

Astro-fertility works on the ­assumption that there are only two or three times a year when a woman can become pregnant and go on to ­successfully give birth. Those windows are ­particular to each woman based on her and her partner’s time and place of birth and the alignment of planets at those moments. It is only when the position of those planets is replicated that a woman can conceive.

‘It sounds like nonsense,’ says Mandy, a secondary school teacher. ‘But we’d exhausted all other options so I thought: “Why not?”’ She and Mark, a community safety worker, met in May 2004 when Mandy was 39 and eager to have a family. But, just as their ­relationship got ­serious, Mark, 47, made a confession – he’d had a ­vasectomy a few years back, following the birth of his three sons from his first marriage.

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