Infertility can leave men feeling emasculated' and worthless', a survey found.
Men spoke candidly of how fertility problems affected their mental health, relationships and even careers. But support is scarce as infertility is often seen as a women's issue'.
In the survey of 41 men with fertility issues, 93 per cent said their well-being had been adversely affected.
Comments included that it was the most upsetting, dark and emasculating experience of my life'; that it made me feel less of a man'; I now suffer with anxiety'; and it made me feel worthless'. Others told the survey by Leeds Beckett University and Fertility Network UK that their sex life immediately took a hit', or that seeing a baby I would feel jealousy and anger'.
One spoke of feeling isolated and stuck in a void of society', while others said the stress of treatment damaging their careers. Men even felt excluded during fertility treatment. One said: The whole experience has been focused towards my wife. Even consultant's letters about [me] are addressed to my wife.'
The team said the survey shows men's needs are far too often ignored' and that there is still taboo about male infertility'.