What No One Tells You About Fertility In Your 20s

You're supposed to be in the prime of your life. Fertility wise that is, because we all know that guy who clearly peaked in high school.

But there are some things you can't really prepare for in your 20s. You've done what you wanted to and you've already made a headstart into your career by 25 and then the baby-isms begin. Unless you are the said guy who peaked in high school and he still spends every weekend cutting shapes to 'Bits and Pieces' in the ABC. Before you know it you are surrounded by babies and people who have babies, and people you don't even know are having babies and somehow you are like "OMG BABIES!".

Now I'll admit, if you handed me a baby at 21 I would have handed it straight right back to you faster than you could say "It's your turn next" (that single sentence is known to any 20-something that instantly fills them with dread, anger and a whole lot of f*ck you).

But now, 25 and somewhat in my fertile prime, I'll admit, it's actually fucking hard to get pregnant. What was I worried about at 17?! Jesus, it really is hard, and that's when you are somewhat cack-handedly trying.

Now, I'll put this out there now, I'm not pregnant, nor am I "actively" trying, by that I mean yes I have sex for fun (I am kidding, sex is less fun when you're actually adult about it and your pre-sex conversation is about who's taking out the bins and if you've finished your taxes) but if we fall pregnant we aren't going to freak out and have a fit like we would have done when we were 18.

But the rumors you heard at 17 about getting pregnant off a toilet seat (yup, someone apparently did get pregnant from a loo seat), or how you get pregnant faster in a hot tub (who in the sweet baby Jesus is having sex in a hot tub?) are just total bollocks. Yes, some people are naturally super fertile and have the perfect body like a week after giving birth but for us mortal beings, it takes a bit of planning and a bit of effort.

So what have I learned? Well for one, if you are aged anywhere between 24 - 29 you will be asked constantly "you trying yet?", and you are desperate to tell them your sex schedule and if they would like to watch since they seem so interested in your procreation habits, but then you remember you are in company and your mum is within earshot. Which while I'm here, sorry if you are reading this mum. I know in your head I'm a hard-hitting journalist, but really I'm sitting in my jammies writing about sex and the contents (or lack thereof ) of my uterus. Enjoy?

You can't walk through M&S without going to the newborn department (you'll, of course, say its via the food court, but we all know you can't resist looking at baby booties), and you'll genuinely feel warm and fuzzy inside. It's just so small! You can't imagine a human so small.

Or one day a little kid will grab your hand thinking your his mum and you feel like a responsible adult (for the first time in your life), and as you hand the kid back you can't help but think of the relief that went through its poor mother's mind as she is reunited with her little one. You sympathize with her because one day you couldn't find your phone in your back pocket and you totally relate.

You wonder what it could be like to be pregnant, even though you've been nursing a burrito baby since lunch that makes you look at least 6 months pregnant. You see it as a badge of honor, and then you hear the horror stories. You hear about the pooping, the tearing, the hormones and the fact your feet can grow?! You quickly forget about the pregnancy glow and how amazing Meghan Markle looks and you take solace in the fact you don't have to deal with that yet. Even though you might enjoy it.

The other thing that will hit you is the day your boyfriend turns to you and says, "wouldn't it be nice to have a baby?". And you sit there, him looking directly at the TV at whatever game he's playing, you gazing at the cactus sitting on his window ledge that's been dead for about a year and you wonder what in the actual fucking dreamland does he think he's in? You ignore it of course because if another word comes out of his mouth you will swear on his mother's life that you will smother him with a pillow. And also, there are no words to coherently describe your answer to that ridiculously stupid question.

But then a few days go by, and you catch yourself at dinner on a night out making faces to the toddler at the next table, giggling over his chubby cheeks and cooing over his adorable little dungarees. And then you wonder what in the fresh fuck has come over you. Your other half is staring at you, terrified that you will get any ideas despite what he said a few days ago because of course, he doesn't remember. And you look at each other, just about to utter something about babies, and said toddler that was adorable two seconds ago lets out a wail that could make Piers Morgan cry, and you both say "NOPE" and carry on with your dinner.

Because fertility in your 20s is just that, highs and lows of fighting with your hormones on trying to decide if you want a baby. Of course, you can't afford it. You're still paying off your student debts and no one pays your bills anymore. Of course, you know that you'll never have a night out again in the next 18 years, but let's be honest, it's not like you do anything on the weekends anymore anyway is it? Our generation invented the Netflix and Chill. Except "Chill" doesn't mean sex is on the cards, it actually means getting your other half to rub your back because you spent all night making dinner.

Another thing that happens is you get asked by the doctors "could you be pregnant" and you genuinely reply "I've no idea", because you don't know, you've got no idea. Your hormones are on a rollercoaster ride and you are crying at otters one day and throwing up the next, but are you pregnant? Who knows at this point, nothing can surprise you.

So what can we conclude from this? We all talk about pregnancy and fertility in your 30s, but us mid-20-somethings are always left out. We don't have all our shit together right now, we don't even know if we want a baby, but one thing is for sure if we hear the words "you're next" one more time, we will not be accountable for our actions.


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