Support for childless men on Father's Day

On Sunday it’s Father’s Day in the UK and it’s also, in a strange quirk of media timing, Men’s Health Week.

If you’re part of our community, you maybe well understand that it’s incredibly difficult for men to talk about childlessness and infertility. Social standards don’t appear to have changed to the degree that society can accept that men will be childless by circumstance and many endure a private turmoil. And it’s not just the painful comments around ‘jaffa’ and getting the right woman (all things we’ve heard).

I know that my own husband has exercised caution when he’s seen a child fall or felt he should intervene somehow. Like so many men, he is aware that childless men can be viewed with suspicion, a topic that came up in World Childless Week’s powerful Men Matter Too webinar with Dr Robin Hadley and Michael Hughes, my co-host on The Full Stop podcast.

No wonder then, that male infertility isn’t talked about. The number of men coming to terms with infertility is unknown. WHO periodically check the global data but there’s scant facts. 

We really do need to allow space for men to talk about childlessness not by choice. Through this website men can share their experiences, and over on The Full Stop we’re dedicating our August podcast to men when Michael will lead Episode 3. As friends and family of those coming to terms with involuntary childlessness, you can listen and I’d encourage you to pay attention to all involved and not neglect the men. Sometimes, as my good friend Michael has said, the grief comes later and I have found this to be true of my husband. With this in mind, here’s some resources to help you through the weekend.

I also recommend this article which, whilst written for Mother’s Day, has many useful tips on how to handle social media and the day.

Whatever you do, I wish you love and strength.