Health Class

A Guy’s Guide To Menstruation, Ovulation And Conception

Timing is everything.

Originally Published: 
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For men, the female reproductive system is often regarded as an unknowable mystery. It even seems like it’s hiding somehow. At least cisgender dudes have their junk hanging out in the open for all to see (though that’s usually illegal). Not so with the cis ladies. What the hell is going on in there?

If you’re trying to make a baby, knowing what’s going on in your lady’s plumbing is actually pretty important. It’ll help you know when the time is right to get it on, and give you the appropriate sense of urgency when she (or her ovulation app) says go. Here’s an overview to make it easier.

The Ovaries

Interestingly, her ovaries are not so different than your testicles. There are 2 of them and they create and nurture the sex cells (her eggs) that need to meet with your sperm to make a kid. That said, the process for how those sex cells are made is a bit different.

In your testicles, there are biological structures that are essentially building sperm pretty much all the time. It’s kind of like a sperm conveyor belt that never stops. However, your lady was born with only a limited number of cells that can eventually become eggs. She lost a ton of them prior to puberty and there will only be about 400 that will eventually reach the ovulation cycle over her lifetime. Of these, typically only one will be released per month as part of her cycle.

The Menstrual Cycle

Basically, you know that you need to give her extra TLC once a month because her period sucks. As you’re bringing her lady-tea and comfy blankets (you are, right?) you may be curious about what’s going down. Here’s how the hormone-driven process works, in general:

  1. The cycle starts with menstruation, or when her uterine lining sheds. She loses up 80 milliliters of blood, starts cramping and craves thin mints. This lasts about 5 days.
  2. Over the next 13 days an egg develops in her ovaries.
  3. The lining of her uterus builds up to accept any eggs that might be fertilized.
  4. On day 14 or so, the ovary (one or the other) will pop out an egg, which travels down the fallopian tube for about 24 hours.
  5. If the egg isn’t fertilized, the hormones that started the cycle diminish and the cycle starts again.


It’s possible to get your lady knocked up at pretty much any time during her cycle. That said, the chances increase or decrease as her cycle progresses. Here’s what you need to know:

During Her Period

There is nearly zero chance you’ll get your lady pregnant during her period. That’s because your swimmers aren’t going to be finding an egg. It’s likely already dissolved and is somewhere near the water treatment plant by now.


Experts suggest you should be getting it on about 2 times a week over the 14 days leading up to ovulation. While an egg isn’t released until ovulation occurs, your swimmers can live up to 5 days inside your lady. So there’s a good chance you could get her knocked up around this time.


This the prime baby-making window. You’ll want your boys to meet the egg in the fallopian tube. You have about 24 to 36 hours to hit the mark. There are very many methods to know when ovulation has occurred, including apps, calendars, and body monitoring techniques.


If your sperm didn’t hit the egg, then your chances of conception decrease significantly as your lady approaches the start of her cycle again. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get it on. Sometimes you just have to have sex for pleasure and release some of the stress of making a kid.

In the end, what’s going on in your partner’s system really isn’t anything magical or mysterious. And understanding the timing is crucial to ultimately conceiving. So get in on the timing game in whatever way you’re able. And be prepared to jump in the sack when she says those 3 magic words: “I am ovulating.”

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