Pregnancy fact or fiction: making baby

Filed under: Just For Moms, Your Pregnancy, Health & Safety: Babies, Nutrition: Health, Sex

Based on my own personal experience, I've decided that getting pregnant is more of an art than a science. Those who've spent some quality time getting pregnant, and perhaps even those who got pregnant after only one attempt (and I find myself in both categories) would agree, even with the factual information out there.

According to the powers that be--scientists, doctors, your health teacher from the 6th grade--pregnancy occurs one way and one way only. A sperm, offered by the male, implants itself in an egg, supplied by the female, and voila'--you make a baby. Science also points out that whether you do it the old-fashioned way, through intercourse, or through other means such as in vitro fertilization, the mechanics are the same. Sperm meets egg, and the rest is history.

But, getting through that simple task can be daunting. It can seem to take forever. Many gals have turned to old wives tales and gossip heard through friends and family to get themselves in the family way. Do any of these methods work? Well, science would argue no, they don't. Experience might say otherwise, however.

For example, with both my pregnancies, the conception of which were decidedly different experiences, I had consumed raw oysters within the month prior to conception. Hmm. Current research holds there might be something to that whole oysters-raising-fertility thing, but not so long ago it was considered a total pregnancy myth.

What about position? I know gals who swear that position makes all the difference. Missionary style is said to be best for conceiving, but I know folks who claim that woman on top works too, even though science would say the physics of that position is off.

What about after the deed? Sources tell me that it's helpful for the woman to remain in bed with a pillow under her lower back. This tilts her pelvis and is said to help move the sperm in the right direction. I tried that. I tried all of that. None of it worked for me, but it has for others.

What about the things that help all of us--eating right, getting enough sleep, destressing? All those things are considered helpful when trying to conceive, perhaps because they make the body more healthful in general. I know for me I simply laughed when everyone kept saying--and when I kept reading--to not stress out about conception, that it would happen. Yeah, right. Tell that to anyone who's been trying for a while without success and see what you get. They're totally stressed. And telling someone to not stress out only makes her stress out more.

Yet, when my husband and I decided to stop trying to get pregnant and just went about our business--he enrolled in grad school, I got a puppy, we started eating oysters--bam, it was nearly instant. We had stopped thinking about it, obsessing over it, and trying all the suggestions of rumor, and get got pregnant.

Some things seem to be spot on: Age matters. Fertility apparently begins to decline at the ripe old age of 27 (although I was over 30 with both my pregnancies). Lifestyle matters--smoking, drinking and being overweight or very underweight all seem to negatively impact fertility according to current research.

So here's what I'd like to know: Did you try any crazy old wives tales suggestions for getting pregnant? And, if so, did any of them seem to work? Truth is we can't scientifically prove that say, oysters were the cause of my getting pregnant (both times--I never eat oysters, really!), but these suggestions linger on even today. They may not be pregnancy fact, but I'm not so sure they're complete fiction either!

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.