To explore the experiences of social consequences among women suffering from secondary infertility. METHODS:
Descriptive case series of 400 women with secondary infertility attending tertiary care hospitals in Karachi, Pakistan. RESULTS:
More than two thirds (67.7%) of women stated that their inability to give live births or give birth to sons had resulted in marital dissonance. The respondents had been threatened for divorce (20%), husband's remarrying (38%) or to be returned to their parent's home (26%) by their in laws or husbands. Majority (68%) of the women threatened did not have any live births. However, those who had live births (32%) had a girl child only followed by difficulty in conceiving again. Secondary infertility was described as a cause of violence against infertile women. The women reported that they were being physically and verbally abused by husbands (10.5%) and in-laws (16.3%) for being infertile. Nearly 70% of women facing physical abuse and 60% of the women facing verbal abuse suffered severe mental stress. CONCLUSION:
The experience of infertility is a stressful condition itself. This becomes particularly traumatic with previous pregnancies ending up in abortions, stillbirths and neonatal/infant deaths or the live births being daughters only. However, it subjects the woman to contempt and exploitation resulting in severe psychological.
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