On the Other Side of the Infertility Chasm

On the Other Side of the Infertility Chasm

Hellllloooooo! Yes. Still here happily on the other side of the infertility chasm. Won’t bore you with details, but the past several weeks have been busier than usual.  A bit like drinking from a fire hydrant. Absorbing a great deal in all spheres of life.  While I may be very behind on social media and blog reading, the women in our global sisterhood are never far from my thinking. In fact, you’re a calming presence, a daily reminder that we’ve mastered the skills needed to face both change and challenges…

Identity Lost and Found After Infertility and Failed IVF

Identity Lost and Found After Infertility and Failed IVF

Identity — and the loss of it — loomed large 10 years ago as I sat staring at my computer. I didn’t know who I was any more. Scared. Untethered. Unsure of what awaited me. I stared at a blinking cursor. Heart broken. Filled with longing for what might have been. I nursed an overwhelming grief (the full extent of which would come much, much later.) Steady rain beat down on the roof February 3, 2007. It was as if the heavens were crying with me. I searched the Internet…

Two Wiser Women On Society and Motherhood

Two Wiser Women On Society and Motherhood

  Welcome to all on the virtual book tour for Life Without Baby: Surviving and Thriving When Motherhood Doesn’t Happen.  (Don’t have your copy yet? You can get one here. Don’t worry, we’ll wait…) ~~ Right. Let’s get to it, shall we? Author Lisa Manterfield has done a tremendous service for those grappling with this question: “What if I never get to be a mother?” Smart, resourceful and deeply thoughtful, Lisa turned her search for an answer into a book that will undoubtedly benefit many. Take it from one who learned the hard way: you could not fashion a better…

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…

The Change: For Reals

The Change: For Reals

While my recent blog posts have been outward facing — examining the increasingly surreal fertility-obsessed world and the entrepreneurial fertility industry eager to cash in around it  — this post, girlfriends, is kicking it old school. Grab a cup of coffee or your favorite libation ’cause we’re going inside the girl tent. The numbers don’t lie.  Menopause confirmed: FSH: 151! It might be the competitive person I am, but my first instinct upon getting the blood test results was to brag.  Yeah, that’s right. 151. Top that. Those who have…

Dear Abby Strikes Out On Infertility, Childless Not By Choice Question

Dear Abby Strikes Out On Infertility, Childless Not By Choice Question

Dear Abby (aka Jeanne Phillips), Pamela Jeanne here.  Nice to meet you. So let me get right to the point. That 2nd letter you posted today, the one about the woman feeling a void in her life following an infertility diagnosis? Yeah, I’m afraid you struck out. You see the question posed by BROKEN RECORD is a highly nuanced once. Allow me and my crack team of experts to help you with this one.  We in this feisty corner of the blogosphere have had a lot of experience with all…

First We Get Really Uncomfortable…

First We Get Really Uncomfortable…

Life would be a whole lot more comfortable and easier to navigate if it unfolded neatly or predictably. Alas, that’s not the case for most of us. Mix in a contentious, complex topic (e.g. the inability to reproduce) and watch the discomfort rise. It’s understandable. Beyond the biological unpleasantness, there is upheaval to our sense of order and what’s the ‘right’ way to proceed — directly (for those living with infertility) and peripherally (for those made to think about it). Add a dash of conventional wisdom, a little religion, some…

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…

Keeping it 100: Identity Crisis and Emotional Cratering in a Mommy Mad World

Keeping it 100: Identity Crisis and Emotional Cratering in a Mommy Mad World

In Part II of the ‘Bitter Infertiles’ podcast transcript (Part I here or listen to the podcast here), we talk infertility trauma, the assault to identity and misplaced mommy glorification… Mo: One of the big issues we discussed last month with a therapist was the devastating effect that infertility can have on the emotional well-being. There’s a point where you … you can be so far gone that you don’t know how to pick up the pieces. Pamela: Even though our paths are not in any way the same, there…

New Philosophy: Everything To Gain

New Philosophy: Everything To Gain

How is it that the mind is so much more agile and able to turn over ideas and philosophies with such ease … in the pre-dawn? With rain falling softly against the window at 5am, and my iPad lighting up the room, I swiped my screen to find a Sunday Review piece called Abundance Without Attachment. With an engaging narrative, writer Arthur C. Brook challenged readers to consider the ‘Christmas Conundrum.’ That is the competing notions of generosity and goodwill this holiday season juxtaposed with the crass commercialism and related…