Religious couples' share meanings of infertility: A phenomenological inquiry
Bedard, Christopher J.
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Infertility impacts 1 in 6 couples in the United States alone. This has long been seen as a medical issue that couples face but not seen as an experience they share. Researchers have sought to understand the influence infertility has on the individual spouses without consideration of the couple as a dyadic unit. The purpose of this study was to explore the experience of infertility from the perspective of the couple. Using an interpretive phenomenological analysis, the researcher explored the following research questions: (1) how do couples experience infertility as a dyadic unit, (2) how the experience impacts interactions with family and friends, and (3) how does the experience impact religious belief? Results of the study revealed five major themes: constant experience, incredible drive, sharing the experience, suckiness, and religious belief as protective factor. Clinical and research implications are discussed.