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The impact of infertility on men's work and finances: Findings from a qualitative questionnaire study

The impact of infertility on the emotional, social and relational aspects of men's lives is now more widely understood. Yet the impact of infertility on men's working lives and financial status remains largely overlooked. Drawing on a qualitative questionnaire study into men's experiences of infertility (n = 41), this article examines how work and finances are managed and negotiated during infertility, including treatment cycles. Three key themes were identified from our thematic analysis: managing infertility in the workplace; compromised job performance, (in)security and progression; the financial burden of infertility, suggesting that infertility can have significant implications for men's working lives, including their identities as productive workers. The impact had a gendered dimension, with threats to masculine‐relevant breadwinner roles and career ambitions. Awareness and management of infertility as a chronic health condition could be a useful way for employers to support disclosure of infertility and to allow men to navigate infertility and their working lives and identities in less stress‐inducing ways. This article contributes to our growing understanding of the stigma men experience in relation to infertility and how such stigma may intersect with masculinity in general and breadwinning in particular.

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