Pope Francis: Let’s Not Promote Further Prejudice

Pope Francis: Let’s Not Promote Further Prejudice

I get the appeal of a world where there is no gray — only  black and white. When there’s only one way there’s no pesky thinking required. The only problem is we live in a complex world where ‘choice’ isn’t always what it seems.  And that’s where things get muddy. Amid the rash of stories this past week with headlines condemning those of us who are not parents: Pope Francis: ‘The choice not to have children is selfish’ * Couples Who Choose Not to Have Children Are ‘Selfish,’ Pope Says…

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…

Blogging From Bed: Is That Acceptable?

Blogging From Bed: Is That Acceptable?

It’s past 10 am on a Thursday. I’m writing this blog post in bed. Acceptable or unacceptable? On any typical Thursday my answer would be unacceptable.  Not allowed, missy!  However, I awoke this morning with stitches and pain emanating from my lower left calf.  I softly adjusted my position and gave myself permission to take it easy. This shift minimized the pressure on the troublesome limb — the one that was the focus of a three-hour Mohs surgery yesterday. The stitches will be in for two weeks. All that will…

The Infertility Stories No One Advertises

The Infertility Stories No One Advertises

Editor’s Note: Updates (10/26) included below from BBC Health. It’s been more than a month since the op-ed prompted by failed infertility treatments, “Selling the Fertility Fantasy,” ran in The New York Times. Infertility stories that don’t end in a baby don’t grab headlines. But this one did. It reverberated across the infertility blogosphere to the bioethics and media communities, as well as the cancer community. For many who had never stepped foot in a reproductive endocrinology practice the 70% failure rate per ART cycle from the latest CDC report and…

When Life is Interrupted By Failed Fertility

When Life is Interrupted By Failed Fertility

Missing from many of life’s conversations where infertility is concerned is the male perspective, which is why I was both pleased and surprised to see that the first questions asked during the Q&A portion of The Cycle: Living A Taboo Forum came from men. While I don’t remember the exact dialogue that unfolded, I do recall the powerful emotions conveyed as one man took the microphone and shared that he and his wife were approaching the end of their fertility treatments. Swallowing hard he recounted the toll treatments had taken…

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…

Teach and Learn: Lift the Veil on a Taboo

Teach and Learn: Lift the Veil on a Taboo

UPDATE: Hat tip to Amy McVay Abbott, the journalist behind Infertility: The Billion Dollar Business & the Heartbreaking Realities and Jody Day for thought-provoking perspectives on our upcoming event The Cycle: Living A Taboo, and the importance of participating in the conversation. Jody wrote: “I get that it’s daunting to attend something where you’ll be filmed. But before you decide you can’t be part of this, not yet… ask yourself this: What have you done wrong? What do you have to be ashamed of? Nothing, that’s what. Nothing.” ~~~ Years…

The Story Behind The New York Times Op-Ed: Selling the Fantasy of Fertility

The Story Behind The New York Times Op-Ed: Selling the Fantasy of Fertility

If you’ve read one breathless headline in popular media about the latest and greatest breakthroughs in fertility medicine you’ve read them all. Articles written about reproductive medicine routinely characterize assisted reproductive technologies (I.U.I, I.V.F., donor eggs, egg freezing and surrogacy) as a “sure thing” when, it turns out, close to 80 percent of the cycles performed annually around the world fail. It took some digging (since clinics are reluctant if not downright misleading about success rates), but the facts are spelled out on the European Society for Human Reproduction and…

Do You Live A Taboo? I Do, Too!

Do You Live A Taboo? I Do, Too!

UPDATE 8/27/2013: For those of you around the world who are unable to join us in person in New York City, we’ve opened up a page on our event website to share your thoughts. Please comment below and we’ll include you as virtual participants. …when a path wasn’t clear, the natural instinct was to go with the herd. Only trouble was finding the right one. I was slowly separating from the ‘Trying to Conceive Tribe’ and from the looks of it I wasn’t ever going to be part of the…

Why Do We Pretend Away Infertility?

Why Do We Pretend Away Infertility?

Humans don’t do well with emotional discomfort of any kind. This has been proven time and time again, but no more so than with infertility. It can be traumatizing on many levels, but I guess I didn’t realize how difficult an infertility diagnosis can be on other people. They just do not want to see it, hear it or talk about it. They prefer to pretend it away. Are you cured? Boy, I sure hope so because that means I can finally relax. This universal sigh of relief was made…