Fertility after breast cancer
Adjusting to life after breast cancer treatment can be hard. Many people find that navigating through the end of treatment is the most difficult stage of their cancer journey. You may feel pressure to go back to work or bounce back to your life before your breast cancer diagnosis. Your friends and family may not realize the emotional and physical toll that is still present after your treatment.
After treatment you may begin to think of your future and having children. It is important to remember that the chance of having a natural pregnancy after treatment is different for everyone. Your fertility specialist can do tests to determine your chances of having a natural pregnancy.
You may find that you are unable to have a natural pregnancy after treatment. If you decided not to preserve your fertility before treatment you may experience regret and have a hard time accepting your infertility. Even if you froze embryos or eggs before treatment, you still may not be able to have a child. You may find it helpful to talk with someone you trust about your feelings. There are also other parenthood options available including egg or embryo donors, adoption or surrogacy.
Know that you are not alone. There are many resources and supports to help you adjust to life and possible parenthood after breast cancer.
Canadian organizations with specific support on life after breast cancer
After Breast Cancer – www.afterbreastcancer.ca
Organization dedicated to providing prostheses and bras for those who had a mastectomy or lumpectomy and are in financial need.
Canadian Cancer Society – www.cancer.ca
Organization that supports people affected by cancer with printed and online information, a toll-free line to ask questions (1-888-939-3333), an online community and a peer to peer support program that allows you to connect with other people like you.
Rethink Breast Cancer – www.rethinkbreastcancer.com/life-after-treatment
Group that provides tips on how to get through life after breast cancer and has a private Facebook page where you can connect with other people like you.