Infertility pp 39-49 | Cite as

Therapy of Working with the Childless Woman: The Pathos of Unrealized Dreams, the Psychology of Female Infertility

  • Mariram B. Rosenthal
Part of the Philosophy and Medicine book series (PHME, volume 53)


The inability to bear children when one wishes is considered a developmental crisis in the lives of women and men. Throughout history, fertility has been highly valued and viewed as the link between generations. It is estimated that about ten to fifteen percent of couples of reproductive age in the United States are unable to conceive after a year of coitus without contraception. This represents about 3 million couples (Seibel, 1991) who are making over 2 million visits a year to the offices of physicians in their quest for a biologic child (Speroff, 1989). There does not seem to be an absolute increase in the occurrence of infertility (Center for Disease Control, 1985). Age adjusted rates remain about the same as they were in 1965, but many women are having their first children later in their thirties when fertility is declining. Peak fertility remains between the ages of 20 to 29 when many women today are building careers, and developing lasting relationships. Some other causes for infertility are the increase in sexually transmitted diseases and the possible presence of environmental toxins (Speroff, 1989). About 50% of couples’ infertility problems are female, about 40% male, and the rest, problems in both partners.


Anorexia Nervosa Embryo Transfer Assisted Reproductive Technology Premature Ejaculation Childless Woman 
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© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mariram B. Rosenthal

There are no affiliations available

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