'Baby-making' vacations - Family planning takes a detour

Amrita Biswas

This is just what the doctor prescribed for Manisha & Ravi. "I had a problem conceiving and in the first 7 years of my marriage I had already gone through four miscarriages!" looks back Manisha. "Living under the constant stress was taking its toll and both me and my hubby were quietly sinking into depression. The doctor realised this and she adviced us to take a break from our normal routined life and go away for a week long vacation to some quiet place...far away from home and office.

Baby basics
The doctor said that the most important thing to bear in mind was not to think of 'making a baby' but to enjoy each other's company in seclusion. We planned to spend a week at Coorg and as I knew my most fertile days we coincided that period with the holiday," she continues. And flash forward to next month, " I was bang on as I missed my period and the doc confirmed my pregnancy and after eight months my daughter was born!" she gasps.

No time...no baby
Today it is increasingly being felt that the daily grind of hectic lives and work pressure is adding to the rising graph of infertility among couples. In an urban set up it is not uncommon to find the husband and wife meeting each other only on weekends. They hardly get time to enjoy each other's company and when they start thinking of creating a family, the pressure to hit the right cord just in time proves to be a dampener.

Priyanka and Shubhayu Two incomes...less sex?
Such was the case with Priyanka and Shubhayu too who live in Dubai, far away from their hometown Kolkata. After two years of marriage when they planned to welcome a mini member in their family, they found to their dismay that the process of procreation was becoming more like a chore than pleasure. Added to that was the tension of having a baby in a foreign land where they hardly knew a good doctor or any close family or friends to take care of the baby and the mother. All these tensions at the back of the mind somehow hindered Priyanka from conceiving. Fed up with their trials they planned to fly down to Kolkata for a break. In Kolkata, when they were enjoying themselves among friends and family, away from the work pressure and with a completely relaxed and chilled out mind, to their surprise they discovered that they are soon to be parents!

Stress and infertility: A co-relation?
Infertlity specialist Dr Malpani agrees that such situations are common among couples nowadays. "If the reason for the 'infertility' is that the couple has been too busy or stressed out to have sex, we ask the couples to go for a vacation and spend more time with each other."

Take a break!!
This trend, which is already very popular abroad, is fast catching up in India. "Often, many working couples are too busy and tired to even find time to have sex. They come back from work exhausted, and go straight to sleep! So when they find that the stress levels are getting out of hand, such short breaks are recommended. Such holidays allow the couples to focus on their relationship and rekindle love and intimacy," he adds.

There are two types of procreation vacations, says Dr Malpani. One when normal fertile couples take a holiday so they can spend more time together; de-stress; and have baby-making sex. And second when infertile couples travel to IVF clinics outside their own city to take IVF treatment to plan a baby. Such trips can be as short as 2 days - if it is planned around the "fertile time".

Procreation packages
Javed Akhtar, CEO of Travel Port says, "Procreation holidays can be as hit as a honeymoon and we are thinking of starting a holiday package for it too! It's already selling like hot cakes in the West where travel agencies are organising fertility camps for as long as two months so that they can get more time for relaxation. But since it is a bit improbable in our country we are thinking of making it a package of a week or two." Some international tours book an igloo suites for couples because they believe it is auspicious for conceiving a baby while some packages in the Carribean islands include unlimited glasses of sea moss elixir (a marine plant mixed with milk, sugar and spices) for males and bowls of pumpkin soup, rich in vitamins for women. It's the Caribbean answer to Viagra, says some and are believed to promote conception!

Pampered to buy "pampers"
As a part of this trend hotels around the world are luring couples who are trying to have a baby. These 'baby-making packages' offer luxurious massage therapies that are devised to be aphrodisiacal which include: on-site sex doctors, romantic advice and candle light dinners. All of which are calculated to put lovers in the mood to try for a baby. Beaches, hill stations and spa treatments are also on the list for such a package. "In India virgin hill stations like Coorg and Mukteshwar or the beaches of Lakshadweep and Goa would top the charts. Also with the boom in international holiday packages, couples can go to South East Asian destinations like Thailand and Maldives," added Mr Akhtar.

Designer babies n' designer pregancies
It's about 'getting pregnant in style.' And in their efforts to 'make a baby' Gen X-ers are leaving no stone unturned in making it a big moment out of creating their offspring and doing it in a way that will be memorable.

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