Most women and men want and expect to have children but increasing maternal and paternal ages reduce their ability to achieve this. Most research relating to childbearing has focused on women. The aim of this study was to explore reproductive-aged men’s fertility information-seeking attitudes and behaviours.
Focus group discussions were conducted with younger (18-30 years, 3 groups) and older (31-45 years, 3 groups) men, residing in urban, peri-urban or rural settings in Victoria, Australia. The topics covered included men’s fatherhood aspirations and intentions, and their attitudes and behaviours relating to seeking information about fertility. Focus group discussions were audio-recorded and transcribed, and transcripts analyzed thematically.
Six focus group discussions were conducted with a total of 39 participants. Four key themes were identified: 1. ‘No need for fertility-related information’; 2. ‘Knowledge and awareness of fertility’; 3. ‘Fertility is women’s business’; and 4. ‘Fertility and manhood’. Fertility and fertility information seeking was perceived by many participants as women’s domain. While men did not seek information about fertility unless they experienced fertility difficulties, they reported learning about fertility through the lived experiences of others, predominantly family and friends who experienced infertility.
Fertility-related health promotion initiatives and reproductive health information targeting men are needed to encourage men to be active participants in reproductive decision making to optimize the chance of both women and men achieving their parenthood goals. Narrative health messages may be a successful way to convey fertility information to men.

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