At RMACT, we're going ALLBLUE this Friday! We invite you to WearBLUE also, to show your support of the health and well being of all the special men in your life, especially the father yet to be.
This weekend, on June 18th, those of us in the US recognize and celebrate Father's Day, as we do every third Sunday in June each year. June is also when we shine a spotlight on the importance of good health and wellbeing of the men in our lives by celebrating Men's Health Month. So as Father's Day nears, and since a large part of our mission focuses on pro-active reproductive health – for both women AND men, today, we focus on the dads and the dads-to-be.
Here are three important health facts that range from issues of fertility and beyond:
Infertility is a disease of the reproductive system that doesn't discriminate between the sexes. In fact while 40% of the infertility struggles can be attributed to female factor, a whopping 40% of those experiencing difficulties with infertility can attribute their struggles to male factor infertility. (Side note - 20% of cases, the exact cause is unknown.)
Men are at greater risk for death in every age group. According to the Men's Health Network (sponsor of WearBlue) & the CDC (Center for Disease Control), "Men die at higher rates than women from the top 10 causes of death and are the victims of over 92% of workplace deaths. (BLS) In 1920, women lived, on average, one year longer than men. Now, men, on average, die almost five years earlier than women." (CDC)
Men don't go to the doctor. The CDC confirms what many of us have suspected: "Men do not see physicians for a physical exam nearly as often as women do. Additionally men are more likely to be uninsured than women. " With just a little more digging, The College of Social Sciences confirm this ascertation with an excellent resource, where they state in the thesis, "It is undisputed in the medical community that men, especially those aged 16 to 44, are in general less likely to visit their GP over medical complaints than women."
What Fertility Counselors Hear About Men, Infertility & Feelings
In addition to these stats, we wanted to share some of the topics that are raised to our fertility counselors and coaches – from RMACT patients.
Many women who are in relationships with men report that men don't like to share their feelings. Whether a man says it or not, father's day can hurt. In fact, many men may try to shield other's from their hurt by either not discussing it or denying it. Sometimes they even laugh it off! The reality is, if you are hoping to build your family and struggling with infertility, Father's Day can absolutely stink. That's plain language and it mirrors the real feelings surrounding this time of year, from men dealing with infertility.
Honor the value of each other as we are right now. While you may not be a father or a parent just yet, you are valuable people nonetheless. Many things will change once your family grows, so acknowledging this time and embracing the feelings you have, will help you with whatever life has for the next chapter.
At RMACT, we want to celebrate all of those men who are working on building their families. That's why we will be participating in Wear Blue this Friday. It is our salute to the fathers to be out there...the men who keep hoping, keep showing up, keep trying. We want you healthy and strong.
We want you just as you are right now.
About Lisa Rosenthal
Lisa has over thirty years of experience in the fertility field. After her personal infertility journey, she felt dissatisfied with the lack of comprehensive services available to support her. She was determined to help others undergoing fertility treatment. Lisa has been with RMACT for eleven years and serves as Patient Advocate and the Strategic Content Lead.
Lisa is the teacher and founder of Fertile Yoga, a program designed to support men and women on their quest for their families through gentle movement and meditation.
Lisa’s true passion is supporting patients getting into treatment, being able to stay in treatment and staying whole and complete throughout the process. Lisa is also a Certified Grief Recovery Specialist, which is helpful in her work with fertility patients.
Her experience also includes working with RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association and The American Fertility Association (now Path2Parenthood), where she was Educational Coordinator, Conference Director and Assistant Executive Director.