Coping Strategies of Women Seeking Infertility Treatment in Southern Ghana
Infertility is a health problem faced by an estimated 15% of women of childbearing age in Ghana. This study explores the coping strategies adopted by 615 women seeking infertility treatment in southern Ghana. Both closed and open-ended questions were used through a survey conducted using face-to-face interviews in three languages at three health sites – a hospital, a health centre and a private clinic. The findings suggest that the majority of the women preferred to keep issues of their fertility problems to themselves. The reason could be due to the associated stigma of infertility. Further, the majority of the women coped through drawing on their Christian faith. Others also coped through the support they received from their husbands, their occupation by way of achieving economic independence, and some avoided situations that reminded them of their infertility problem. The findings should have implications for health personnel as some strategies infertile women use may do more harm than good (Afr J Reprod Health 2009; 13:81-93).