By Alicia Moulton
They now have a 9-month old baby boy, but it took more than 18 months of ultrasounds, doctor appointments, medications and treatment to make it possible. After BYU graduates Kendra and Jeremy Johnston?s experience, they returned to Women?s Services and Resources at BYU to suggest holding a panel to help others couples who struggle with infertility.
The infertility panel will be held tonight, 6:30-8:30 p.m. in 3252 WSC. Dr. Keith Willmore, Medical Director of the BYU Health Center, will speak, followed by the Johnstons, and two other couples who have dealt with infertility and now have children through adoption and in vitro treatment.
Information about infertility is not the only resource Women?s Services offers. Today at 11 a.m. they will hold the last workshop of the semester, ?Lifelong Learning: Extend Education Beyond Your Degree? in 3380 WSC, which will include a panel of four women in different stages discussing options to continue learning.
Although very different topics, both events are geared to provide students with information to help them make decisions in whatever stage they are in.
?We want to present different options and have a forum of women who?ve ?been there,?? said Hannah Hamill, office manager of Women?s Services. ?I like to hear what people my age have to say.?
For the infertility panel, Kendra Johnston said she wants to give support to others with similar challenges. While going through treatments she could not find any support groups for infertility in Utah.
?Infertility was a very difficult challenge for us,? she said in an email. ?It was physically, emotionally, spiritually and socially draining.?
Johnston said although 10 to 20 percent of couples have problems with fertility, many are quiet about it and do not know where to go for help. She said the BYU Health Center saved her thousands of dollars and is an important resource for couples with infertility problems.
?I wanted to increase awareness and help other people who are struggling,? Johnston said.
The Women?s Services workshop earlier in the day will address options of how women can pursue lifelong learning, through formal education and in other ways.
?For everyone it [lifelong learning] means something different,? Hammill said. ?We need to be prepared to make a plan for life after graduation or in school.?
Hammill will speak at the workshop along with a graduate student, a single mother who returned to college, and a BYU graduate who is a representative of the Princeton Review.
Women?s Services also provides many other resources for students, including support groups, yoga, speed dating, and a blog at byuwsr.blogspot.byu.edu. They will be giving out copies of their cookbook at the 11 a.m. workshop.