Fertility is a problem. Worldwide, but especially in the industrialized countries. According to the CDC, 12% of women from 15 to 44 years of age have difficulties conceiving and carrying to term. As we know, both male and female factors exist and while this is true, the burden often falls on the woman to seek help.
In The Ancestral Continuum: Unlock the Secrets of Who You Really Are, authors Natalia O’Sullivan and Nicola Graydon include an important section on healing fertility in the chapter Healing the Family Tree. They quoted Dr Christiane Northrup – “Women are almost never told how their family history, beliefs, and emotions affect their fertility. Knowing this information can be very empowering.” When so many fertility challenges have unknown factors, it begs more exploration. Even if male and female factors such as low sperm motility and polycystic ovarian syndrome do exist for a couple, this does not preclude non-physical causes at the same time.
By looking into our past, at our mother’s, grandmother’s, great-grandmother’s experience of pregnancy, we can better understand our own reproductive obstacles. We inherit much more than genetic code of eye colour. We inherit their fears and blocked energies. Were they scared? Did they want children? Did they lose their own mothers to childbirth? Did they suffer a miscarriage, abortion, or still birth? What were the circumstances and the environment in which they conceived and raised their children? There can be so much pain, regret, and shame around something as wondrous as conceiving a child.
Fertility issues can also arise from conflicts with our mothers. Perhaps there was rejection or abandonment. In a patriarchal society, the feminine has been suppressed for far too long, with significant costs to us as individuals and to society. As the authors of The Ancestral Continuum point out, we can feel unsafe in this world and the mind/body blocks conception. Or sometimes we have an issue with receiving. Conception is a receptive act. To become and be pregnant, we are allowing ourselves to be vulnerable, to receive, to let go of control, and to be actively in the cycle of life and death.
We have also been indoctrinated by the media that childbirth is incredibly painful, made worse by the intervention approach that is common today. It’s any wonder not more women are simply scared out of it. According to the women I know, especially the ones who used hypnobirthing and assisted by midwives and doulas, it is about letting go. Rather than pushing, it is breathing, surging, and opening.
No matter the journey to having a child, it necessarily includes facing our emotions and fears and dealing with our concept of masculinity and femininity. This work is not only for women but for men as well. The more we release our baggage, including what we have inherited, the lighter the load we pass onto our children. Understanding better our own emotions also allows us to have a deeper appreciation of ourselves and others, prepping us for the transformative role of parents.
In 2013 What Therapy hosted a day event with speakers from a variety of disciplines to share different perspectives on dealing with fertility challenges. Some of the key points included detoxing the body, mind, and home prior to trying to conceive, working on the cellular level to improve communications and functions of the body, including releasing information of past miscarriages, using relaxation techniques with breathing, releasing energetic blockages with Jin Shin Jyutsu, and understanding and dissolving deeper non-physical blocks.