My wife and I have been trying to conceive for a year. What could be wrong? Ask Dr. Doyle

QUESTION: My wife and I decided that whoever becomes pregnant first can carry our first child, so we’ve been trying to conceive with the help of our best [gay] male friend. We’re doing this at home, using the needleless syringe method. We’ve been trying for about a year, and neither of us has conceived yet. I’m 30 and my wife’s 28. Both of us are interested in holistic approaches that may help us but we’ve only just started researching techniques. We both work full-time at this point and only one of us has a stressful job. What are the chances that we’re both infertile? Are there support groups for people like us? We’re grateful for any advice you can give. Thanks!

ANSWER: The chances that either one of you is actually infertile is probably 10-15% so the likelihood both of you having infertility is under 5%. But that doesn’t mean that either (or both) of you doesn’t have a fertility issue that might benefit from some testing and perhaps even treatment. For example, hormonal imbalances and ovulation problems are very common in young otherwise healthy women, and when the success of home insemination relies strictly on doing it at the ideal time, these problems can make all the difference between success and months of frustration.

Therefore it might be reasonable for each of you to have a few tests to see if one of you is more able to conceive sooner than later, and to also determine whether some form of treatment (even a holistic one like acupuncture) could help.

As far as support groups, there are many. Perhaps the best place to start (besides here) is at your local LGBT Center to see what exists in your area.

Ask Dr. Doyle