How to Cope When your Husband has a Vasectomy

Having a family is considered one of the most important ways building a network of love and emotional support in life. However there are many those who choose not to have children, either as individuals or together as partners. If you have just been made aware of the fact that your husband has a vasectomy, here are a few things you can do.

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Why keep you in the dark

If you both have been married for quite some time and you have only now stumbled onto the knowledge that your husband has had a vasectomy while you were married, the issues at play are quite complicated. Apart from the fact that you can no longer have biological children with your husband, there is the matter of taking such an important decision behind your back. This could imply a lack of trust in your judgment or a serious disconnect between you both. Thus you need to cast an appraising look at your marriage and figure out why your husband should take a decision that impacts you as a couple without your knowing at all. Take steps to improve communication between you and your partner and move on to resolve any issues of conflict that may be pushing you both apart.

Do you have kids?

Men undergo vasectomy usually when they have already had two or more biological children and don’t want anymore. If you and your husband already have kids, you can be more understanding of your husband’s decision though rightfully a little put off by being kept in the dark. On the other hand if you do not have any children in the marriage and still your husband has got the vasectomy done, consider if you had talked about remaining childless at the beginning of your relationship and if it was a mutual decision. If yes, then there is little you can do about it but if no, then your husband’s unilateral decision may be a pointer to a serious lack of trust and support in the marriage. Having kids is one of the basic sources of fulfillment for a woman and a human being in general and taking away that right from you without your awareness is far from an ideal state
of affairs.

If it is a planned vasectomy

On the other hand if it is a planned vasectomy and you knew about it, there is little you can do about it now. Instead acknowledge a man’s right to do with his body as he pleases and respect his choice.

Arm yourself with info

What you can do though is to find out more about the procedure. After all it forms a part of your husband’s medical history and you have a right to know about it since it is going to impact your future together. Vasectomy is a surgical procedure which brings about permanent sterilization in men. It is done by cutting the vas deferens tubes between the testicles and the groin and sealing them either with stitches or cauterization. The procedure is usually done under local anesthesia. Because it is less intrusive than tubectomy, vasectomy is one of the most popular means of sterilization

Do not build resentment

Since your husband has already gone through the procedure, it is no point building resentment over the fact now. Crying, blaming him and emotional blackmail will not only be meaningless at this point but further raise stress levels in your relationship. Instead try and understand why you are feeling this way. The primary cause of sadness at your husband’s vasectomy may be a loss of control over your having a child. By undergoing a vasectomy you feel your husband has taken away your ability – in a mutually monogamous marriage – to have more children. While your emotions are understandable, consider the issue from your husband’s point as well. If this was something planned from before and you had already talked about it, try and accept the decision with good grace.

Before you push for a reversal

One reason why vasectomy is preferred to tubectomy as a more or less permanent method of birth control is because it is comparatively easier to reverse. Thus even if your husband has gone through a vasectomy, should both you wish for another child sometime in the future, having one biologically is not entirely out of the question. A vasectomy can be reversed by re-attaching the tubes that carry the sperm from the testicles into the semen. However keep in mind that reverse vasectomy is a rather specialized procedure and only expert surgeons and urologists are capable of performing one. Also the cost of a reverse vasectomy is quite high, reaching to around $10000 USD and it is rarely covered by medical insurance. And then there is the question of how successful will it be. In the best situation, pregnancy rates are about 75 percent, but the rate drops depending on how long ago the vasectomy was done. Doctors on the whole try to discourage men from having the reversal if it's been 12 or more years since their vasectomies. So if you think you can afford a reverse vasectomy and your husband doesn’t mind his decision being reversed as well as going through a rather difficult surgical procedure, then you should not worry too much about him having put on the brakes, at least for now.

Other options too

Your husband’s vasectomy need not become an impediment if some time in the future, you and your husband would like to increase your family. You can consider other options like adoption which is a great way to enlarge your family and at the same time give a little one a healthy chance at life and love. But this can be expensive as well and it is best to seek counseling before you arrive at any decision. If the time and expense of adoption bothers you, consider becoming foster parents. Opening your home to children who can’t live with their biological parents is a marvelous thing to do when you can no longer have kids of your own.

In the end, how you take the reality of your husband’s vasectomy will depend upon the dynamics of your relationship. While having kids is not the be-all and end-all of a marriage, it is best if the decision is mutual or at least arrived at after a healthy discussion.