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Infertile Will Do Anything for Children

Posted November. 10, 2005 03:34,   


More and more young people these days are unwilling to have children, but there are also 315,000 couples in Korea who cannot have children, even if they want to.

“I understand those infertile couples that are so desperate for a baby that they were even willing to buy ova,” said Park (39), who lives in Seongnam, Gyeonggi Province.

Park went hiking yesterday with eight female friends whom she met two years ago at a website for infertile couples. The doctor at the fertility clinic had recommended hiking because “moderate exercise helps pregnancy and at the same time allows mind control for infertile women who are prone to depression.”

For Park, every single day of the last 10 years was a nightmare. After two miscarriages, she started receiving hospital treatment such as ovulation shots and test tube operations, and even ate whatever was said to be good for pregnancy, such as black goat and abalone.

She said, “Many infertile couples receive psychiatric treatment. I even visited a temple for a 100-day praying session.”

For many couples infertility is a reason for domestic fights.

Kim (28), who lives in Dobong-gu, Seoul, has tried to have a baby since 2001, when she got married to her husband who is 11 years older than her. For three years, however, she could not get pregnant. Three years ago, after confirming that nothing was wrong with her ovum, Kim asked her husband for a sperm check but ended up quarreling with her husband, whose pride she hurt with that comment.

She would even take her husband’s condom and store it in the refrigerator until the next morning when she would wrap it and take it to a nearby clinic.

After giving birth to a baby girl this year, Kim said, “During the time I could not get pregnant I felt indebted to my mother in law who visited me once a month with brewed sagebrush so that I could give birth to the family’s heir. I felt extremely pathetic when I had to wake up my tired husband to have intercourse early in the morning in order to do it at the right time as advised by the clinic.”

Han (34), who had been infertile for seven years, went up a mountain to pray and slept with a talisman by her bedside, because her in-laws said she had to “meet the spirits.”

Infertility also causes one to avoid socializing.

Kang (33), who has been infertile for three years, said, “When a friend who married later than I did invites me to her child’s birthday party I don’t usually go because I feel uncomfortable. I am often distressed when I see my husband avoid high school reunions.”

Gung Mi-gyeong, head of the fertility clinic at Cheil Samsung Medical Center, advised, “Infertility is a problem that we should all think about. The first step in solving the problem is to have couples understand each other.”