Love, Loose Pants, and the Quest for a Baby

Sometimes people need some relief from the sombre tales of the sub fertile, says Mark Cossey, guest speaker at the Fertility Support Group meeting on 24 June 2021.

Mark Cossey is a writer and TV producer. His first book – Trying: Love, Loose Pants, and the Quest for a Baby – is “a no holds-barred welcome to the world of the sub-fertile written by a man who has lived through it all and come through it… the sex calendar, hostile cervical mucus, IUI and IVF…

“Through a combination of ignorance and outrage, Mark has survived ejaculating into a small jar, stabbing his wife with a needle, pink semen and group sex with whales.

“Mark’s sperm remains lazy. Despite this, he and his wife Martha now have two children.”

Mark Cossey quest for a baby

Ahead of the meeting we caught up with Mark and asked him a few questions about his ‘quest for a baby’.

Q. Did you always want children, or did this come later in life?

A. I always wanted to start a family with Martha. That never changed much – what did was the world around us.

You become more and more aware of what you were missing out on. Purgatory was clearly invented by a childless couple.

Q. Scheduled sex must put pressure on the best of relationships – how did you cope?

We no longer allow calendars in the home. Or mention of the word ‘cycle’. I did grow as a person during those long evenings – unlike that uncooperative, self-serving creature that lives between my legs.

Q. At what point would you have stopped treatment?

My feeling is never. Towards the end, we started to consider adopting. It brings its own challenges, but then you’ve already sat in a clinic masturbating. You’ll be fine.

Q. Looking back, what advice would you have given your younger self?

You’re powerless, she’s powerless; your fundamental right to children is being taken from you. You’re alone, because every other person you know is on their third ‘surprise’ baby.

If you can get through all that, then I guarantee you’re going to be the best parent ever – not that the little terror will ever thank you for it…

Trying - Mark Cossey

Join a meeting

Mark will be talking about his journey at the Fertility Support Group Meeting on 24 June – there is also a group meeting without a guest speaker on 20 May.

At the meetings you can talk if you want to or submit comments and questions to be read out anonymously.

More information

The Fertility Support Group is open to everyone struggling with infertility – see more information about how to register.

See more stories of male infertility and how men are affected by fertility issues in our Men Talk section.

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