The Human Side of Failed IVF

The Human Side of Failed IVF

So for some time now I’ve been intrigued by the different ways countries treat the infertility experience. In the U.S. there’s a concerted effort by the commercial infertility industry to fund groups like RESOLVE and the American Society for Reproductive Medicine. The objective: to grow the market and extend customer reach. Where’s the Human Aspect in Reprotech? While the industry presents its work under the guise of helping people the ‘helping’ part only concerns the sale of expensive, invasive treatment. Sadly, it’s the exception rather than the rule for clinics…

Male Call: The Head Cannot Heal the Heart

Male Call: The Head Cannot Heal the Heart

Editor’s Note: When it comes to matters of the heart, there’s nothing quite so comforting and validating as discovering you’re not alone in teasing out complicated emotions. Whether in the blogosphere or in society as a whole male voices are in the minority on the topic of disenfranchised grief. It’s rare to hear men give voice to their feelings on involuntary childlessness or the finality of infertility. That’s just one of the reasons why this guest post from Brian Hawker — a self-described teacher, sometimes writer and bad trumpet player…

No More Silencing: Speaking Our Truth

No More Silencing: Speaking Our Truth

This guest post comes from Andrea Rose, teacher and budding artist. Andrea’s first husband became infertile due to cancer in their first year of marriage while they were in their early twenties. She and her current husband struggled with male factor and age-related infertility for over ten years. She has had to make difficult decisions and change her viewpoint about herself, family and friends. After unexpectedly landing on the margins of society, she regained her footing, brushed herself off, surveyed the unfamiliar landscape, and discovered deeper strength and a new…

Hello Strangers: I’m an Infertility Survivor and I’m Not Ashamed to Say It

Hello Strangers: I’m an Infertility Survivor and I’m Not Ashamed to Say It

Here is Part III of the ‘Bitter Infertiles’ conversation — on the anniversary of the day the podcast took place. This where we own up to our experiences as ‘Infertility Survivors.’  Mo:   One of the things I want to ask you ladies … people always focus on the negative of, as Pamela said, it’s not really ‘child-free living’ it’s more choosing not to parent so … Pamela: Let me clarify, I didn’t choose not to parent, I had to come to terms with the fact that parenting wasn’t part of…

Infertility Community’s Black Sheep: Women Who Don’t Achieve Motherhood

Infertility Community’s Black Sheep: Women Who Don’t Achieve Motherhood

Some ‘no-holds barred’ conversations stick with you — like the one Loribeth and I engaged in on surviving infertility and the search for peace in a mommy mad world. (Listen to the podcast here).  Not achieving motherhood is a taboo topic in the infertility community, which is why we were unlikely guests on the tongue-in-cheek named podcast ‘Bitter Infertiles.’  The conversation was all the more surreal because both hosts, Cristy and Mo, were pregnant at the time of our discussion. To their credit, the hosts openly shared their fears and tackled…

With ‘Fertility’ Businesses Booming, Is Now the Time to Go Long on Kleenex?

With ‘Fertility’ Businesses Booming, Is Now the Time to Go Long on Kleenex?

It’s no secret that I was unable to get pregnant during my prime child-bearing years. What I possess today (and didn’t have when I was 29 and just embarking on what became a prolonged medical mystery tour) is a healthy skepticism mixed with a dose of pragmatism. My inability to succeed with Mother Nature, and my direct experience with the deep heartbreak that accompanied promising but failed reproductive medicine makes me highly sympathetic to the plight of infertile couples and those who want to expand their families. I remember very…

We Don’t Heal From Suffering We’re Changed By It

We Don’t Heal From Suffering We’re Changed By It

We usually want to believe we’ll be grace under pressure, stoic and even sunny in the face of adversity. The truth is we never really know how we’ll respond to unexpected, searing pain and loss — being truly in despair — until we find ourselves facing it head on.  Even then we don’t have any confidence that we’ll muster the strength to get beyond it — to push forward. Some do and some don’t. I am reminded how much suffering has the power to change us when I review my…

Generation I.V.F. Shares Lessons Learned

Generation I.V.F. Shares Lessons Learned

We don’t get to choose when we’re born or the era in which we live, but we can decide what  lessons we leave behind for others. Author and fellow former fertility treatment patient Miriam Zoll lays out some truths associated with what it means to be a part of Generation I.V.F. in a piece  posted to Lilith Magazine. Those of us who were mere teenagers in 1978 when the first IVF baby was introduced to the world  listened wide-eyed at what science could achieve. Just 15 years old at the…

One Small Step For Infertility Awareness, One Giant Leap For Society

One Small Step For Infertility Awareness, One Giant Leap For Society

My expectations for September 27 and The Cycle: Living A Taboo were very high — not only for those of us presenting at the forum, but for those who would join us. What transpired surpassed my expectations. As the evening drew near, we speakers assembled in Tribeca from Los Angeles, Silicon Valley, Spanish Harlem, Boston, and Manhattan. After we checked the mics, the camera crew took their positions, and the tall theater doors opened. In came those bringing genuine interest and (later) palpable support. The seats began to fill with…

The Wisdom of Experience and Value of Seeing the Whole Picture

The Wisdom of Experience and Value of Seeing the Whole Picture

Update: You can read the “The Grief of Infertility” #losschat transcript from the Twitter Chat earlier this week. The discussion is contained on Storify. Great sharing — we even had a man’s perspective. I’m not sure when I first started watching but every seven years I tune in for a viewing of a documentary series — the latest being 56 Up. It began in 1964 with a show looking at the lives of adorable seven-year-old British children. It’s unique in that every seven years since most all have appeared again…