Acupuncture to help conceive
I spent 10 years dating my now-husband trying desperately not to get pregnant. All through college, his law school and our young professional lives, we doubled up on birth control: I was always on the pill and he used condoms. We were that cautious. Finally, almost three years into marriage, we felt ready to try for a baby.
In February 2014, I went off the pill expecting to get pregnant in about a minute. I'm a healthy, active 29-year-old who eats organic and tries to lead a stress-free life. My period is more regular than any high-speed rail and everyone has always told me how easy it would be to conceive. "You'll be preggers within a month!" friends and family had all shouted with glee well before I was trying. I've even had psychics tell me how fertile I am.
The first month without a period I was elated because I figured we’d been lucky enough to get pregnant with our first try. But multiple pregnancy tests revealed otherwise. Then March, April and May went by and I wasn’t anywhere closer to being pregnant. I still hadn't resumed a post-pill period.
For the first few months I told myself to be patient and not obsess over whatever was (or wasn't) going on with my body. Stressing out is the surest way not to get pregnant, right? But instead of rubbing my pressure points with calming essential oils and practicing some downward dog, I found myself falling down the wormhole of infertility message boards.
By June I was frantically searching for alternative therapies. I had seen my OB-GYN and she assured me that I was healthy and should just be patient. When I told her that I’d been reading about acupuncture and the positive effect it could have on fertility, she gave me the green light to try it. I had heard that acupuncture could help women resume ovulation and preferred to do things as naturally as possible. So rather than step on the gas to a fertility clinic (which was tempting), I decided to give acupuncture a shot. My doc agreed that Traditional Chinese medicine was a good option since I wasn’t in a huge rush to get pregnant. (If I had been, she recommended I take an ovulation-enhancing drug like Clomid.)