It is a truth universally acknowledged that some women will fall pregnant easily and others will take a little while long. Sometimes years. Some of us will need extra help along the way and other will need IVF or drugs to help them conceive. Sometimes, nothing is wrong and it’s just time some couples need.
There are plenty of guides to getting pregnant. Here we have tried to give you what we feel is a helpful guide if you have decided this is the right time to have a baby.
It might not happen all at once
It’s temping to think that the first time you have unprotected sex that you have done it. That’s it! You’ve never had unprotected sex before right, so this has to have worked?
It can then be a shock when your period arrives.
And even more so when it happened again a few months in a row. Don’t worry! This is totally normal even though you may have decided that you want that baby NOW. Mother Nature, as we know, doesn’t care what our timelines are not to mention that fact that it is much more convenient for you to get pregnant now so you get the summer maternity leave.
Statistically speaking the people at Babycenter have some good cold hard statistics for you on how long you’ll take to get pregnant on average for couples actively trying:
- 30 percent get pregnant within the first cycle (about one month).
- 60 percent get pregnant within three cycles (about three months).
- 80 percent get pregnant within six cycles (about six months).
- 85 percent get pregnant within 12 cycles (about one year).
- 91 percent get pregnant within 36 cycles (about three years).
- 93 to 95 percent get pregnant within 48 cycles (about four years)
And this heavily depends on your age, health, when you came off contraception and your partners health of course also.
This means 20% of us (and remember, this is looking at women aged from their 20’s to their 40’s) will take longer than a year to conceive. Don’t expect it to happen all at once. But do also be aware it could happen within the first 3 months of trying.
Ok, can i speed it up a bit?
Yes of course. You can tip the odds in your favour with a few sensible changes.
- Track your periods and cycles – if you know when you’re ovulating it makes the job a lot simpler. Make sure you’re always having sex the few days before you ovulate and you’ll up your chances substantially. You have a 30% max chance of getting pregnant each month so really try to make all of that work for you. You can get help tracking here. Try techniques like SMEP (Sperm Meets Egg Plan) which will maximise your timing. The best days for sex are the day before you ovulate and the day before that – if you can keep going until your temperature starts to rise.
- Use ovulation kits – we have a handy guide here to the best ones. It helps to know roughly when you ovulate in the month to help save some pennies.
- Get your partner’s sperm up to spec – even if your eggs are in tip top condition from all those pre-natal vitamins you’ve been taking, try getting your partner to take a similar supplement and stay away from hot baths. We have a guide to sperm here as well for some extra bed time reading.
- Try lube – Even if you’re full of, erm, juice try using a sperm friendly lubricant like Conceive Plus or Pre Seed. These lube’s will lower the acidity up there and provide a sperm friends environment to give the swimmers a little boost on their way up to meet the egg.
- Try lying down after sex (or even better have another orgasm) – while research doesn’t fully agree that staying supine after the dirty has been done it can’t hurt. Orgasms will relax your uterus, calm you down and there has been limited research that felt an orgasm after sex can help the sperm with their upwards journey. So make it clear his job is not quite done yet!
- Don’t panic but equally don’t be complacent – If you’ve been trying for six months (and believe me I understand) and nothing has happened and you’re under 35, don’t panic. Keep going to a year and then go and see your doctor (we went at 11 months in the end). If you have been trying for up to a year please go and see your doctor. Take your charts. Make it clear you’re worried that nothing has happened. Do not allow your GP to side line you. If you think something is wrong, push to be referred to a fertility centre.
Support while you’re trying
It is stressful. It’s fun and it’s stressful. Never let anyone put you down if you’re feeling things are getting hard.
Support forums are great – although it can get quite intense (watching all of the women in my groups ‘graduate’ before me was pretty tough) women on there are all in the same situation as you and there is great support to be found in the right places.
Some good books to read which go from the practical to the slightly more alternative are listed below if you’re finding you want more information.
Talk about it with your partner where you can and explain to them why you are fining it so stressful. If you need to, seek counselling. It was when I found I was avoiding all pregnant women I knew that I realised I needed some help. It did help. Everyone’s journey is different.
Good luck and most of all – enjoy! This is the most sex you’ll have since you first got together so make the most of it where you can even on the days neither of you can face it!
Mind Body Baby – Ann Bracken
The Baby Making Bible – Emma Canon
The Impatient Woman’s Guide to Getting Pregnant – Jean. M. Twenge
Taking Charge of your Fertility – Toni Weschler