Want to start a family

Hi All. My wife and I have been married for nearly three years. I had an instance of erectile dysfunction on my honeymoon that has caused me mental struggles ever since. I’ve gone through periods where sex came easier and more naturally, and I’ve also gone through periods where I really struggled to get/stay hard. I’ve found that planned sex doesn’t work for me. It almost always leads to anxiety/panic throughout the day and erectile struggles. Recently my wife and I have decided to stop using protection and we would like to get pregnant.

When her ovulation time came around, I couldn’t perform. It was extremely frustrating for the both of us. Any one else experienced this? Tips to overcome this? I don’t want this to send me into another rough patch of anxiety.

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Yes, totally. I experienced the most performance anxiety when my wife and I were trying to conceive. It was the first time that my performance really mattered. A few things I found that helped…

Conceiving can be really difficult for couples, and there are a whole host of reasons that conception may not happen even if you do everything right - performance and the ability to ejaculate are just two potential factors. Knowing that even if I “did my part”, we might still not conceive really helped me take that pressure off myself.

Also, there’s a pretty wide fertility window of a couple of days around your partner’s ovulation during which you can conceive. That means you have a lot of chances for success! My wife and I wanted to maximize our chances, so we were having more sex than either of us need (or, honestly, want). So we understood that not every time we had sex would be a slam dunk, and that was ok.

Trying to conceive can be really stressful for both partners, especially if you’ve been trying for a while. Knowing that you have a lot of chances to get it right and that the ability to conceive doesn’t rest squarely on your shoulders can help relieve some anxiety.